Over high heat we dissolved 4 cups sugar -- one cup at a time -- into 2 cups of water in a saucepan. This was interesting in and of itself for my kids to see how sugar dissolves, and to note that it took much longer for the 4th cup of sugar to dissolve than the 1st.
After it was all dissolved, we took the pan off the heat and added a teaspoon of flavor and enough food coloring for the hue we wanted. We chose almond extract because who doesn't LOVE that stuff?! We let it cool off for 10 minutes or so, and then poured the syrup into a clean mason jar. Because I have two children who strongly love blue, and two who strongly love pink, I made two batches: pink and blue. I'm such a pushover.
We dipped a wooden skewer into the syrup mixture, then rolled it in sugar, and submerged it again the the syrup jar. I taped the skewers to the top of the jar, leaving about an inch of clearance at the bottom. You can fit two skewers into a mason jar, but try to keep them from touching each other because when the crystals begin forming, they will grow together if they're too close. (See example at the end)
|Crystals in process of growing|
Hope someone else enjoys this as much as we did!