That Honeycomb Challenge on Squid Game Has Spurred a TikTok Trend

Plus, here's how to make it at home!

squid game
PHOTO BY Screenshot/Watch Right now ILLUSTRATION Warren Espejo

(SPOT.ph) Had a stressful weekend? We're guessing it's because you binge-watched the Netflix survival drama that is Squid Game—it definitely kept us on the edge of our seats episode after episode, not least for its many twists, turns, and thrilling yet brutal scenes. If you love food, though, one particular aspect of the show likely caught your attention, and that's the challenge that entails carving shapes out of Korean honeycomb candy. It's gone on to spark a trend on TikTok, too—and the best part is, you can make the candy at home!

Also read: 10 Survival Game-Themed Titles to Watch If You Liked Squid Game

squid game
One of the highlights of Squid Game is the honeycomb challenge that had the contestants carving and licking their way to saving their lives. 
PHOTO BY Netflix / Squid Game
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Here's the deal on the honeycomb challenge from Squid Game, its spread on social media, and how to make the dalgona candy yourself:

How Does It Work?

The honeycomb challenge is based on a real traditional Korean children's game that involves Korean honeycomb candies also known as ppopgi or dalgona candy—yup, the same traditional toffee-like confection that inspired the trendy coffee in 2020!

In Squid Game, each participant is given a tin can bearing a candy with a different outlined shape—either a triangle, circle, star, or an umbrella. The players are then meant to carve the shape out using a needle while keeping the shape intact. The catch? Break the shape, and you're instantly shot dead.

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The participants received tin cans with honeycomb candy in different shapes, like stars...
PHOTO BY Screenshot/Watch Right now
squid game
...And umbrellas.
PHOTO BY Screenshot/Watch Right now
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They then had to carve out the shapes and try and keep them intact... or else.
PHOTO BY Screenshot/Watch Right now

Our protagonist Seong Gi Hun was in for quite the challenge as he received an umbrella-outlined candy—but he discovers a neat trick that helps him survive the game. Out of nervousness, he has a drop of sweat land on his candy, and that drop lent its moisture to the candy and made the shape's outline thinner and (relatively) easier to cut. With that eureka moment, he licks the honeycomb and manages to pull through—at least for that particular stage of the survival game. (No spoilers here, folks!)

Also read: Reimagining Squid Game in Metro Manila

The TikTok Trend + Dalgona Candy Tutorial

With the popularity of Squid Game, it's no surprise that the honeycomb challenge is making waves in real life! On TikTok, you can find a good number of videos of the show's fans trying their own hand at the challenge. 

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@mardyandbum

safe ???? ##squidgame##dalgonacandy

? original sound - lifeqiun
@misojenkitchen

have you watched Squid Game? ##squidgame ##dalgonacandy ##koreanetflix ##korean ##squidgamenetflix ##????? ##koreancandy ##netflixkdrama ##korea ##dalgona ##kr

? SQUID GAME RED LIGHT GREEN LIGHT - miso jen

Many others have also uploaded tutorials on how to make the candy at home—and with a few tools and basic ingredients, it's pretty doable even for non-pastry chefs! Check out this example from user @franziee_v:

@franziee_v

???? #squidgame #dalgonacandy #eatstraveltime #eatskorea #MYfoodie #foodtok #foodie #franzie_v #easyrecipe #foodtiktok #food #foru #fyp #sweet

? Squid Game - Green Light Red Light - Yovinca Prafika

As per the tutorial above, you can begin by putting a tablespoon of sugar into a ladle. Put the ladle over low heat, stirring with a chopstick until it liquifies and develops a glossy golden hue. (Note that caramelized sugar is very hot and you can burn yourself if you're not careful—be sure not to touch the hot caramel with your bare fingers or let it get in direct contact with your skin.) From there, add a pinch of baking soda, and stir again as the honeycomb mix starts to foam up slightly. Pours the mixture into small circles on a baking-paper lined sheet, and let it set for 20 seconds—just enough to cool and harden a tad—then press a cookie cutter onto the surface to get an outlined shape!

When completely cooled, you can then try cutting into it with a needle or by licking it a la Gi Hun. Or heck, just bite into it and enjoy its burnt-sugary flavor and crisp yet light bite! Thankfully, this real-life version doesn't involve you losing your life if you fail the challenge—so carve and/or lick away.

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