How To Make The Honeycomb Candy From Squid Game

On September 17, 2021, Netflix released "Squid Game," an original South Korean drama show that quickly achieved global success faster than any other Netflix original series. Co-CEO of Netflix Ted Sarandos shared that "Squid Game" is on track to become the most-watched series on the entire platform as it continues to climb in popularity (via Observer). The series, with dystopian themes similar to those seen in "The Hunger Games," covers a series of challenges to be completed as the cast of characters compete for the chance to move up in society. The story has captivated audiences as hype spreads across the internet like wildfire, and a sweet treat seen in the series has even inspired a Tik-Tok challenge (via Mashable).

During the second challenge in the series, honeycomb toffee, also known as dalgona candy, is featured. The candy shares a name with the also-popular dalgona coffee TikTok trend that swept the internet in 2020. According to Parade, the word "dalgona" comes from "dalguna," the Korean word for "it's sweet." Dalgona candy is shown in the scene in a disk-like shape. 

Viewers decided that the Korean delicacy looked good enough to eat and took to the internet to share recipes for making candy at home. With a little effort, you can make your own dalgona candy at home.

Dalgona candy has traditional roots

At first glance, the recipe for dalgona candy looks fairly simple. It contains only two key ingredients: sugar and baking soda. It might be hard to believe that such a simple selection of components for the candy can make such a delicious flavor and texture, but it's all in the technique. The process has origins in Korea with a major rise in popularity in the 70s and 80s, according to Beyond Kimchi, at which time dalgona candy was enjoyed as an inexpensive street food.

Before the TikTok recipes came into existence, the treat was made by filling a ladle with sugar and holding it directly over a heated portable charcoal stove before stiring it with a chopstick. When the sugar started to caramelize, a little bit of baking soda would be added to the ladle. Once it bubbled, the candymaker would transfer it to a flat surface and press it flat. The finishing touch is the shaped cutter used to embellish the surface (via Beyond Kimchi).

While dalgona candy probably tastes best made by skilled hands in a setting more aligned with its origins, TikTokers have claimed to find success using at-home recipes.

You can make it in your kitchen

While dalgona candy doesn't have many ingredients, you will need some tools to make your own. A ladle will also be necessary, as well as cookie cutters for the shapes and a silicone mat to press your dalgona. You will also need a chopstick and a hoettek press, but if you don't have those things, a popsicle stick and a flat pot lid will suffice (via Beyond Kimchi).

Patience is key, so you'll want to use low or medium-low heat to caramelize your sugar, according to Beyond Kimchi. Make sure it's completely melted, then take it away from the heat and add your baking soda. All you need is a little bit to get the desired effect. If you use too much, it will make for a more bitter flavor profile. Be sure to wash your ladle with hot water between batches to avoid messy buildup.

Making the famous dalgona candy from "Squid Game" and TikTok is simple yet challenging, and absolutely worth it. If you haven't watched the series yet, make yourself a big batch and curl up on the couch for a Netflix binge. With nine episodes to get through, you'll need a lot of candy!