Try the viral challenge yourself to find out!
The massive success of Netflix's “Squid Game” introduced the sugary South Korean candy dalgona to many around the world. Dalgona candy was a popular street food in the 70s and 80s in South Korea and remains a staple today. After purchasing this candy from street vendors, customers can try to carve out the shapes that are stamped into the candy. If they are successful, they get a second piece of candy.
On TikTok, users attempt to replicate a version of this game featured in the series, in which players must carve out the shapes stamped into the candy without breaking it before time runs out. If they didn’t succeed, they suffered permanent consequences.
The candy is quite simple to make, requiring only two ingredients, sugar and baking soda. Different recipes use different ratios of sugar to baking soda, so you can experiment to see what works best for you.
To make the candy, line a cookie sheet with parchment paper to prepare. Pour sugar into a ladle or saucepan and hold it over a medium flame. Keep stirring the sugar until it is fully melted, or else it will burn. Once the sugar is an amber color and completely melted, remove it from the flame and immediately add the baking soda. Mix the sugar and baking soda. The mixture should now be lighter and more opaque.
Pour the sugar mixture onto the cookie sheet and flatten it with a greased spatula. As quickly as possible, stamp the candy with the shape of your choice. If you have cookie cutters, you can use those to make the shapes. You can also try to trace shapes using a knife or even just use a small cup or bowl.
Let the candy cool down before you remove it from the parchment paper, and be very careful when you do. You don’t want it to break before you’ve even tried to carve it out.
Once the candy is finished, it’s time to attempt the challenge. There are many different strategies you could use to carve out the dalgona; some are more successful than others. The players in the series use a needle, while others use toothpicks, or even just their hands.
You can also try heating a needle and tracing the shape. This will melt the candy and make it easier to break off. This is how the show’s cast members attempted the challenge in a video by Netflix’s The Swoon.
Whatever you choose to use, the best strategy is to take it slow and gentle. If you go too fast or get too excited, you’ll likely end up with your candy in pieces. So stay calm, and don’t worry too much about any kind of time limit.
Regardless of whether or not you succeed, once you finish you will still have some delicious candy to snack on.
Josey Merolli. Hey, I'm Josey (she/her) and I'm entertainment editor! More »