It is important to calibrate your candy thermometer and prepare your work station ahead of time, before starting the cooking process. I recommed you put the lollipop molds on a baking tray and add the sticks to the molds. This is very important because recipe can be tricky to work with as the sugar heats up and hardens very quickly.
Add the sugar, corn syrup, water and tincture to a heavy-duty 1-quart saucepan. Place over medium heat and then stir until the sugar dissolves.
Attach the candy thermometer to the side of the pan, ensuring the bottom of the thermometer does not touch the bottom of the pan.
Allow the mixture to come to a boil. Do not stir. If sugar crystals form on the sides of the pan, wash them down with a wet silicone brush.
Continue to allow the mixture to cook until the temperature reaches 260°F.
Without stirring, drop in your desired amount of food coloring (2-5 drops). Continue to allow the mixture to cook, watching the temperature carefully.
When the temperature reaches exactly 300°F, remove the pan from the heat. When the boiling has ceased, add in your flavoring. Be careful when pouring this into the hot sugar, rising steam may cause burns.
Carefully pour the mixture into molds. If there is extra, pour it onto parchment paper for candy. Let cool completely.
Once cool, wrap the lollipops in bags and secure with twist ties.
Enjoy! Store in a cool, dry place if not enjoying immediately.
This process is sticky and once cooled, the harden sugar will be very difficult to get off of your pan and utensils. The easiest way to clean them is to soak them in hot, soapy water, until all of the sugar has dissolved.
A note from my reader Christy for high altitude cooks: "since water boils at a lower temp in high altitudes, don’t forget to decrease your temps in this recipe. I follow the “2 degrees for every 1,000 feet above sea level” rule. I’m am 6,500 ft so I reduce the temp by 13 degrees. So for instance, instead of my candy going to 260 degrees, mine should go to 247 degrees. And 287 instead off 300. This has solved my problem of my candy being ridiculously hard to work with! I was overcooking!"