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Illinois Pastry Chef Sets Record For World's Longest Candy Cane

By Chuck Sudo in Food on Dec 10, 2012 8:30PM

On Dec. 8 the Chef Alain Roby of All Chocolate Kitchen in Geneva, Ill. set a Guinness world record for longest candy cane when he unveiled a 51-foot long candy cane as part of Geneva’s Christmas Walk and House Tour.

The candy cane marks the third Guinness world record for Roby; he also holds the title for cooked sugar building (12 feet, 10 inches) and chocolate sculpture (20 feet, 8 inches). Roby, a regular guest on Food Network programs and The Martha Stewart Show, trained under renowned pastry chef Gaston Lenotre and celebrated the first anniversary of his shop’s opening in August. Chicagoist spoke with Chef Roby about why he decided to make the candy cane, the process and if he has any other record projects in the works.

Chicagoist: Why did you decide to make so long a candy cane?

Alain Roby: I thought it would be a fun piece to do as a world record and it would fit perfectly with the art walk that was happening in Geneva, which is very festive this time of the year. After the Mayor of Geneva declared it a world record, we broke it up with a hammer so that people could leave with a piece of the cane.

C: How long did it take you to design and build the candy cane?

AR: The process took about three weeks and I estimate I used at least 900 pounds of sugar to make the cane. I built the cane in four- to eight-foot segments.

C: Did you need to use a special stove or make any molds for the cane’s segments?

AR: I used a large copper pot in the kitchen of my shop and twisted and rolled the segments by hand. Each one took at least 90 minutes to 2 hours to twist and roll.

C: I thought you would have needed to use a mold to make a candy cane.
Oh, no. Even the smaller candy canes, like those made in candy factories, are elongated and rolled by hand. It’s very much like making glass.

Do you feel drawn to doing these projects as record-breaking challenges?

AR: I like to call it “uncharted territory.” The records I hold are projects that hadn’t been done before or only done once or twice previously. I like the challenge of making these projects come to life.

C: Do you have any future projects in the works to add your name to the record books?

AR: Not right now. This was an exhausting project and I just want to take my time to enjoy it and get back to work.