Watch How Victorian Hard Candy Was Made in the 19th Century

At one ice cream and candy shop in Tallahassee, Florida, old-fashioned confections serve as a sweet little piece of history. Lofty Pursuits still uses a candy press made in 1871 to shape its acid drops and cinnamon hearts. And in this quirky video, spotted on Boing Boing, you can take a behind-the-scenes look at how the shop recreates the Victorian hard candies as they were made back in the late 1800s.

To make the cinnamon hearts, the sugary candy base made with cinnamon oil is mixed with food coloring and laid out on a candy cooling table made in 1891. As it cools, the substance develops a rubbery texture that the candymaker in the video describes as “a bag of molten sugar.” To make some of the candy white, he lays a portion of the yellow, hardening liquid over a hook, pulling the solidifying sugar down repeatedly and folding it over on itself to create air bubbles that will reflect the light and make the candy look white instead of yellow. Strips of the different colors of candy are then fed into the press, which flattens them into a thin layer and stamps them with hearts.

Once these strips of candy fully cool, the confectioner goes through the process that gives drop candy its name: He drops them onto a table from above to break apart the hearts. Then, all that’s left to do is eat them. (Or bag them and sell them, if you really must.)

The candymaker in the video also explores why Valentine’s hearts don’t look anatomically correct, which you can learn more about here (and in video form here).

[h/t Boing Boing]

Amazon's Under-the-Radar Coupon Page Features Deals on Home Goods, Electronics, and Groceries

Stock Catalog, Flickr // CC BY 2.0
Stock Catalog, Flickr // CC BY 2.0

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Now that Prime Day is over, and with Black Friday and Cyber Monday still a few weeks away, online deals may seem harder to come by. And while it can be a hassle to scour the internet for promo codes, buy-one-get-one deals, and flash sales, Amazon actually has an extensive coupon page you might not know about that features deals to look through every day.

As pointed out by People, the coupon page breaks deals down by categories, like electronics, home & kitchen, and groceries (the coupons even work with SNAP benefits). Since most of the deals revolve around the essentials, it's easy to stock up on items like Cottonelle toilet paper, Tide Pods, Cascade dishwasher detergent, and a 50 pack of surgical masks whenever you're running low.

But the low prices don't just stop at necessities. If you’re looking for the best deal on headphones, all you have to do is go to the electronics coupon page and it will bring up a deal on these COWIN E7 PRO noise-canceling headphones, which are now $80, thanks to a $10 coupon you could have missed.

Alternatively, if you are looking for deals on specific brands, you can search for their coupons from the page. So if you've had your eye on the Homall S-Racer gaming chair, you’ll find there's currently a coupon that saves you 5 percent, thanks to a simple search.

To discover all the deals you have been missing out on, head over to the Amazon Coupons page.

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McBroken: This Website Saves You a Trip to McDonald's By Telling You If Their Ice Cream Machine Is Down

McDonald's ice cream remains an elusive treat.
McDonald's ice cream remains an elusive treat.
Mike Mozart, Flickr // CC BY 2.0

Fast food is about indulgence, and there are few menu items that promote cravings more than the soft-serve ice cream cones and McFlurry treats at McDonald’s. These pseudo-dairy desserts have an ardent fan base despite the fact that the machines dispensing them are frequently out of service for maintenance or cleaning.

Now, a new website can inform customers when a McDonald’s ice cream machine may be down. It’s called McBroken, and The Verge reports it was created by 24-year-old software engineer Rashiq Zahid. The site maintains a map that displays in real time which restaurants are able to offer ice cream and which aren't.

How does Zahid gather this information? A program attempts to place a McSundae order at every McDonald’s location in the United States via their app. If it’s added to his cart, the location gets a green dot and is prepared to dispense ice cream. If not, a red dot indicates there will be no ice cream forthcoming.

McBroken also keeps a running tally of the percentage of all restaurants without a working machine. At last glance, it was at 10.93 percent.

According to The Verge, Zahid was inspired to create McBroken after failing to retrieve a McSundae while in Berlin, Germany, over the summer. His program, or bot, originally attempted to order a McSundae every minute, but the McDonald’s app declared the activity suspicious. Now, he has set it to attempt an order every 30 minutes. The system works, Zahid said, because he verified the results against locations he visited in Berlin in person.