This very pretty strawberry candy is named after a not-so-pretty insect, the chigoe flea (bicho-en-pé or "foot bug" in Portuguese). This tiny flea can burrow into the skin of the feet and lay eggs, which can cause swelling and redness, sometimes with a tiny black dot in the middle. Not all that appetizing, but the appearance of these sweet candies must have made someone think of these annoying insect bites - especially when they are decorated with a black clove, which is sometimes the case.These candies are often served at parties, alongside chocolate brigadeiros and coconut beijinhos. They are easy to make and look quite pretty when rolled in granulated sugar and served in tiny paper cups.
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Yield: About 25 candies.
- 1 14 ounce can sweetened condensed milk
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1/2 of 3 ounce package of strawberry gelatin
- Pinch of salt
- 1/2 teaspoon raspberry extract
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
- Granulated sugar, shredded dried coconut, or candy sprinkles for decoration.
- Place all of the ingredients in a heavy sauce pan.
- Cook mixture on low heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon or heat-proof spatula.
- Continue to cook until mixture thickens and pulls away from the sides of the pan, about 15 minutes. When the mixture is thick enough, if you pull the spatula through it, you should be able to see the bottom of the pan for several seconds.
- Remove mixture from heat and pour into a heat-proof bowl to cool, until cool enough to handle.
- With buttered hands, pinch off pieces of the mixture and roll into 1-inch balls in the palm of your hands.
- Place granulated sugar (or coconut or sprinkles) on a plate, and roll each ball in the sugar to coat. Place each candy in a small paper cup. Decorate as desired.
- Store candies in an airtight container for up to 3 days, or in the refrigerator for up to one week. Let candies warm up to room temperature before serving.