Caffeinated mint candies
Okay so my latest project is making caffeinated hard mint candies. I finished the first batch the other day (pictured below). I worked out a safe and easy way to remove the binders and fillers from the caffeine tablets I picked up, and the stuff tastes pretty good too. The candies apparently work pretty well too; they kept me awake through two early morning chemistry classes on Friday. Unfortunately, there's a couple of problems I'm having that I'd appreciate a bit of help with, if there are any candy-makers out there.
First, the mint and vanilla extracts I'm using seem to vaporize out of the candy too quickly, and the blue colouring decomposes when the candy gets to the correct temperature. Does anyone know if it would work to take the pot off the stove and leave it a few minutes before adding flavourings and colour?
Second, to make the actual candy pieces, I stretched the candy mass into a long rod and chopped pieces off with a cleaver, but the pieces vary wildly in size (and therefore caffeine dosage). Does anyone know of a way to make more uniform pieces, or do I just need more practice?
Thanks, with any luck, I'll be able to make an instructable of the second batch.