Combine sugar, Corn Syrup, water and salt in heavy saucepan . Over Medium heat, cook to hardball stage (248 degrees F on candy thermometer) Remove from heat and let stand with thermometer still in place until the temperature drops to 220 degrees F WITHOUT STIRRING.
Place egg whites in mixer bowl, turn on to speed 8 (high) and whip until soft peaks form, about 1 minute. Gradually add syrup slowly in a fine stream (taking about 2-3 minutes). Reduce speed to 4 (medium) and add vanilla. Continue mixing until mixture starts to look dry and hold its shape.
This may take 20 to 25 minutes. Quickly stir in nuts and drop mixture from spoon onto waxed paper. Try to enlist a helper for this step, as it sets up rather quickly. Store in a covered container after it is cool.
*In place of vanilla and nuts you could use almond extract and candied cherries. or peppermint oil and crushed candy canes.
I have even added a package of sugar free strawberry jello as flavoring with success. Just add it to the egg whites as you whip them.
A candy thermometer will insure good luck with this recipe.
By Harlean from Arkansas
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