How do I make candy shells like M&Ms or Reese's Pieces have?
You can give your candies hard shells by dipping them into a melted mixture of one part water, two parts sugar, and 1/2 part corn syrup. Melt those ingredients together over medium to medium-high heat until the sugar has totally dissolved and the mixture is at the hard crack stage (295-310° F./146-154° C.). Remove your pot of glaze from the heat and place it into a waiting metal bowl of ice water. Once the glaze has stopped bubbling, begin dipping your candies immediately. Once dipped, set them on an appropriate, lightly greased surface to cool (use a flavorless oil or kitchen spray for greasing).
You'll want to skewer your candies to dip them; never attempt to dip candies into hot glaze by hand. You'll also want to set everything up for dipping before you make your glaze: have your bowl of ice water ready; have a greased tray or marble slab/counter ready to receive your dipped candies; have your kitchen to yourself (distractions aren't good when working with hot glaze).
Your glaze will cool very quickly, so work carefully but efficiently.
How would you do this if you were useing a candy coating panner. I keep trying but as soon as the syrup hits the chewing gum peices they all want to stick together.