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Entries in candy (48)

Saturday
Nov012014

What Happens When You Melt 15 Candy Bars in a Pie Crust

Have you ever wondered what happens when you fill a pie crust with 15 candy bars* and then bake it?

* = if we're talking about Fun-Size candy bars, which I personally so often am around this time of year, you want to make that 30-36 or so. 

Well, if you have ever found yourself plagued by this candy bar quandary, you're not alone. I too have been baffled-- but lucky for you, I recently rolled up my sleeves and proactively worked to find out. 

Not only was I seeking a piece of tasty pie--but peace of mind.

First, I made up a pie crust. I used the recipe and method I mastered via King Arthur Flour. 

Next, this is where I must make a confession. I didn't specifically have the number fifteen in mind with my candy bars. Basically, I just kept unwrapping the bars I had received in the mail from Legit Organics, cutting in half, and adding candy bars til the pie crust was full.

It was full at around 12 candy bars. But it occurred to me (I'm always thinking, see) that once the candy began to melt, it would reduce in volume. So to be safe, I added three more candy bars. I'm not going to keep you in suspense: it was the right decision.

I put the whole thing in a preheated 350 degree oven. At 30 minutes it looked mostly done, but at 35 it was perfectly toasty. 

When I took it out of the oven, it looked like this. What the picture doesn't convey is that it was making a snappy bubbling sound that lasted a good minute. It was beautiful. 

I can pretty much say this is the best use ever of 15 candy bars (more Fun-Size). The pie is one of those desserts that makes you say "oh, it's too much!" but then somehow you're reaching for your second slice. Don't say you don't know what I mean.

(note: This pic had a bit of ice cream on top but I wiped it off to get a clear shot of the pie (hence the small white mark on the front).

Here's how you do it.

15-Candy Bar-Pileup Pie 

  • 1 unbaked pie crust
  • 15 regular sized candy bars, cut in half, or 30-36 Fun-Size candy bars, in harmonious flavors

 Procedure

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Place your candy bars in the crust. Pile them high enough so that they slightly form a  crown over the edges.
  3. Just for safety, put the pie plate on top of a baking sheet. Place the whole thing in the oven.
  4. Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until the bars are melted and bubbly and the crust is browned to your liking.
  5. Remove from the oven and let cool to room temperature before serving. This can take up to an hour. 

Enjoy!

Wednesday
Oct292014

Trick or Sweet: 33 Amazing Halloween Recipes

Halloween is all about sweets, right? And costumes, I guess. But I am most concerned about the sweets.

Here is a collection of 33 (cos that's how old I am this year) Halloween recipes that are bound to make it a year of trick or SWEET for sure!

1. Mega fun-size candy bar.

What happens when you melt together a bunch of fun-size candy bars to make a mega mass of chocolatey goodness? Find out here. (CakeSpy)

2. Candy corn pecan pie.

What could make pecan pie even sweeter? How 'bout a nice serving of candy corn? (CakeSpy for Serious Eats)

3. Frankenstein monkey bread.

Monkey bread gets Halloween-ified with this spooky treatment. (Pillsbury)

4. Candy corn cookie cake.

It looks like a pie, but this spy knows the truth: it's a cookie coated with candy corn! (Culinary Concoctions by Peabody)

5. Candy corn cookies.

This clever adaptation of Kaleidoscope cookies is sweet and cute. (CakeSpy for Serious Eats)

6. Homemade mellowcreme pumpkins.

Because the homemade version blows store-bought out of the water! (CakeSpy for Craftsy)

7. Candy corn boston cream pie. 

Even fancy desserts like to play dress-up on Halloween. (CakeSpy)

8. Cake baked in a pumpkin.

Are you still eating cakes baked in pans? Not this month, sucker! Make yours in a pumpkin for Halloween. (CakeSpy for Serious Eats)

9. Microwaved halloween candy.

How do different treats fare when put in the microwave at high power? (CakeSpy)

10. Glow in the dark buttercream.

Illuminate your treats--um, literally. (CakeSpy for Craftsy)

11. Pumpkin bread.

Plain and simple. In case you like more wholesome treats, no tricks. (CakeSpy)

12. Homemade candy corn.

An awesome DIY version of everyone's favorite Halloween tricolor triangles! (Shauna Sever via CakeSpy!)

13. Creamy Candy Bar Sauce.

It's just such a good idea. (the Kitchn)

14. Candy corn Nanimo bars.

Nanaimo bars like to get dressed up for Halloween, too! (CakeSpy for Serious Eats)

15. Zombie graveyard cake.

Make a ghoulish cake for people, not zombies! No brains included in the ingredients. (CakeSpy for Serious Eats)

16. Deep fried halloween candy. 

Take Halloween candy...and deep-fry it. Like, whoa. (CakeSpy for Serious Eats)

17. Homemade halloween oreos.

They have orange filling = instant Halloween! (Smells Like Home)

18. Scaredy-cat brownies.

Oreos become cute cats on this adorable brownie presentation. (Martha Stewart)

19. Candy corn and spider web cake pops.

She's the queen of cute cake pops, and these ones are a good example of just why she's considered royalty. (Bakerella)

20. Creamed candy corn.

Yes, I went there. You'll like it more than you think you will, I promise. (CakeSpy for Serious Eats)

21. Candy corn milk.

If creamed candy corn is too thick, perhaps you will like the easy drinking quality of candy corn infused milk.(CakeSpy)

22. Candy corn cupcakes.

These are just adorable: tricolor delights of cake! (Chocolate Moosey)

23. Glittery pumpkin cupcakes.

Add a little glitz and plenty adorableness to a Halloween party with these dazzling cupcakes. (Real Simple)

24. Candy corn tuxedo cake.

I don't know if I can express how worthy this is of clicking over to see. It's truly stunning. --> (Sprinkle Bakes)

25. Pumpkin Pie Milkshake.

I say it's appropriate through all of the pumpkin holidays: Halloween thru Thanksgiving. (CakeSpy

26. Crescent witch hats.

These crescent witch hats are not only cute, but they're easy. Really! (Pillsbury for CakeSpy)

27. Ghost cupcakes.

These are ghoulish, but the taste is all sweet thanks to an enrobing of white chocolate! (CakeSpy)

28. Brownie spider web cake.

Yummy, easy, cute, Halloween-y, and brownies are included. What more do you need? (Heather's French Press)

29. Peanut butter haystacks.

It's the eyes that make them look like little monsters. Delicious little monsters, that is. (The Girl Who Ate Everything)

30. Candy corn upside down cake.

Like pineapple upside-down cake, but replace "pineapple" with "candy corn". Yes indeed. (CakeSpy for Serious Eats)

31. Halloween fudge.

It's not only super-sweet, but also highly adorable. (Crazy For Crust)

30. Halloween jell-o Jigglers.

These are amazingly easy to make, and they will make everyone happy when you serve them. (CakeSpy for Serious Eats)

31. Candy corn popcorn balls.

Like popcorn balls, but with the added Halloween joy of candy corn. Hooray! (CakeSpy for Serious Eats)

32. Bell pepper jack o'lanterns.

This savory treat is allowed because they LOOK so sweet (figuratively, of course). Promise me you'll check 'em out. (itsyummi.com)

33. Leftover halloween candy pie. 

It's awful and awesome all at once. Just like a horror movie. Gulp. (CakeSpy for Serious Eats)

Wednesday
Oct222014

Sugar Cookie Dough Cups from Dessert Mash-Ups

I felt a shiver of excitement upon receiving a review copy of the new book Dessert Mashups by Dorothy Kern of Crazy For Crust (a site well worth checking out if you ask me). Before I even opened the book, I already loved the concept. Upon opening it, I just got more excited: s'mores cakes, cheesecake cookie dough truffles, carrot cake-coffee cake...the tasty mashups prove that if some is good, more is amazing (something I have long suspected).

Basically, I'm going to tell you that if you liked my first book, CakeSpy Presents Sweet Treats for a Sugar-Filled Life, then you absolutely need to buy Dessert Mashups

In case I haven't made myself clear enough, I'll bring the point home with an excerpt from the book, for sugar cookie dough cups. This excerpt, including headnote and photo, is reprinted with permission from Ulysses Press. Thanks dudes!

Sugar Cookie Dough Cups

My father-in-law was a sugar-cookie fanatic. Every Christmas I’d make our family sugar cookies and I’d have to make him his own extra batch so he wouldn’t eat all of ours (and he would have!). Over the years I started making lots of other sugar-cookie treats, from bars to candy, to give him for every holiday and birthday. I made these in his memory, and I know that he would have loved them (and eaten them all without gaining an ounce).

  • Yield 12
  • Prep Time 45 minutes
  • Chill Time 1 hour 15 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1⁄4 cup (1⁄2 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1⁄2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons whole milk
  • 1⁄2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 12 to 16 ounces vanilla-flavored melting chocolate
  • Sprinkles (optional)

Procedure

  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or with a hand mixer in a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar. Beat in the vanilla, milk, and flour.
  2. Form the dough into a disk. Place between two sheets of waxed paper on a cutting board. Roll out to 1⁄4 inch thick. I like to peel the waxed paper off the top, then flip the dough over and peel it off the bottom after every few rolls so that it doesn’t stick. Refrigerate for at least 15 minutes.
  3. Using a 2-inch round cookie cutter, cut 24 circles of dough, rerolling as necessary. Place half the dough rounds on top of the other half, for a total of 12. Refrigerate until ready to assemble cups.
  4. Melt the melting chocolate according to the package directions. (See Candy Dipping Tips.)
  5. Line a standard 12-cup muffin pan with paper liners. Spoon about 1 tablespoon of melting chocolate into the bottom of each liner, enough to coat the bottom. Tap the pan to settle the candy and release any air bubbles.
  6. Place one cookie dough round in each muffin liner. Top with
1 to 2 tablespoons more melting chocolate, spreading as necessary to make sure that the two edges of chocolate meet. Tap the pan again to release air bubbles. Top with sprinkles. Refrigerate until set, about 1 hour. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to one week. These can also be frozen.
  7. Tip: These are a big dose of sweet! To make them more bite-size, use a mini muffin pan, with mini muffin liners and a 1-inch round cookie cutter. You can also make these with your favorite flavor of cookie dough. Just substitute 1 tablespoon of milk for each egg called for in the recipe to make an eggless cookie dough, and you can omit any leavening that is called for. Use vanilla or chocolate candy melts, depending on your cookie dough flavor.

Someone come over my house, because I feel like I could eat the whole batch!

Monday
Feb032014

Sta-Puft in Style: How to Make Funfetti Marshmallows

Marshmallows

Recently, I was making homemade marshmallows for an upcoming Craftsy post, and during the process, I found myself slightly hypnotized by the bubbling of the boiling sugar mixture.

Can't you see why? Just look:

mallowboil

So. It was during this time that I thought these magical words: "I'm going to make these marshmallows funner." How exactly? Well, the typical way one would usually make something funner:  ADD FUNFETTI. 

The process of funfetti-ing something up, I have determined, is pretty simple: all you have to do is stir in rainbow sprinkles. Yup. Science.

Marshmallows

So when I finished the marshmallow batter, I stirred in some rainbow sprinkles into the mix, then let them set. Miraculously, the sprinkles didn't bleed too much--I was a little worried it would look like rainbow soup. But nope. They were pretty as could be.

Marshmallows

So after they set, I further funfetti-ized them by dusting them in a sprinkle and confectioners' sugar mix. I had tried just sprinkles, which was pretty, but the coverage was spotty and they crunched too much in the mouth. 

Marshmallows

Listen, if you decide you'd like to make funfetti marshmallows, here is how I suggest you do it.

Funfetti Marshmallows

Makes about 64 marshmallows

Step 1: Follow the instructions for making homemade marshmallows from this post, for the brilliant marshmallows from  Butter Baked Goods: Nostalgic Recipes From a Little Neighborhood Bakery. I will have a step by step tutorial coming up on Craftsy--I will post a link when it's up, OK?

Step 2: When you've finished mixing the batter but before you pour it into your pan, quickly stir in a hefty handful of rainbow sprinkles. I used the translucent kind--you know, the kind you'd find on a pop-tart. 

Marshmallows

Step 3: Let the marshmallows set as specified in the recipe. When finished, dust them with a mixture of confectioners' sugar and about 1 tablespoon of sprinkles, mixed together to evenly distribute everything.

Marshmallows

And there you go. Fun! Both inside and out. 

 Marshmallows

Look at that! Couldn't be easier, and now you have magical marshmallows. Watch out--you just might make your s'mores and hot chocolate jealous.

Friday
Mar292013

An Introduction to Cactus Candy

YEAH! That is the coolest kind of parcel to receive, let me tell you. How did it happen that I was on the receiving end of such a treasure? Well, let me tell you, I did the best thing ever: I put two children on the job for me! Seriously, it was like having my own personal Oompa Loompas. Two very cool kids that I know were headed to Arizona for vacation. I told them to keep an eye out for cactus candy for me. A couple weeks later I received a parcel containing the above. AWESOME! 

But seriously. We need to address something more serious than your jealousy about my awesome mail. It's possible not only that you've never heard of Cactus Candy, but that you've never even considered its existence. It's possible that the possibility of it has never even entered your mind.

And that pains me, sweet friends, because I really think you should know about this stuff. So...for your continuing life learning...

Cactus Candy

Photo: Flickr user Branflakez

Cactus Candy: A Primer

What is cactus candy? Quite simply, it is candied cactus: pieces of cactus which have been coated and treated with a simple syrup mixture to make it immortal. It sort of resembles pate de fruit or gumdrops (but flat) in texture and look. However, keep an eye on the ingredients. As one candy blogger noted, in a sea of a Cactus Candy flavor assortment, only one flavor (Prickly Pear) actually contained cactus. 

Where can I get cactus candy? In Phoenix, there is a cactus candy company. They have a store. They also sell cactus jelly and salsa and the like. But you don't have to visit the store to buy--they also wholesale to a lot of tourist type operations, so you'll see it in the greater Phoenix area. If nowhere else, you'll find it in the airport gift shop. 

When is it in season? Well, prickly pear season is late Spring and summer, but really, in candy form, you can enjoy it just about any time. 

Why is cactus candy a thing? Cactus is a pretty big deal in Arizona. Prickly pear, as it is called, is in frequent rotation regionally as an ingredient. It is used as a syrup, stand-alone ingredient, beverage component (prickly pear margarita, anyone?). It stands that the candy made from this local ingredient would feature prominently in local cuisine. 

Cactus candy inside

Photo: Flickr user Seldo

How is Cactus Candy Made? I'm not sure how the commercial candy is made, but I have seen recipes for DIY Cactus candy online. It basically goes like this: chop down a cactus, remove thorns and simmer in simple syrup for several days. You weren't busy, were you?

How does it taste? This is a fruit-ish flavor that isn't strongly recognizeable. It almost tastes like a few different fruits you can't quite put your finger on. It's not overwhelming or as signature as, say, lemon. But it's pleasant.

Curious to learn more? Check out cactuscandy.com

Wednesday
Nov212012

Season's Sweetings: A Sampler from Willamette Valley Confectionery

Willamette Valley Confectionery

A while back, I wrote about some sweet treats I enjoyed from Willamette Valley Confectionery. Well, apparently this was a great idea, because they not only took notice but decided to send me a big ol' sampler of their holiday offerings. Thanks, dudes!

I'm so excited to tell you about the joys that came my way via priority mail. When I opened up the package, here's what I saw: 

Willamette Valley Confections

First up was the "Basket of Cranberries", pate de fruit cleverly packaged in a berry box. 

Willamette Valley Confections

I have to say, these candies surprised me. Usually sweet and not much else, pate de fruit has a reputation of underwhelming me. But these ones, with the tartness of the cranberry, were a far more interesting thing to eat. Willamette Valley Confectionery Next up were the barks. Peppermint and Oregon Hazelnut, to be exact. Willamette Valley Confectionery The Peppermint was a very nice version of what has become a holiday classic. Very well executed--I'd call this one a people pleaser and a good gift idea.

Willamette Valley Confectionery

But given my personal preference for nutty chocolates, I found the hazelnut bark disappeared far quicker when in my kitchen. Deep dark chocolate with toasty nutty hazelnuts--sign me up as a lifetime fan. Willamette Valley Confectionery

I thought the bark had been bitten, but there was yet more to be had. For cleverly packed in a carton... Willamette Valley Confectionery

Was some very tasty white chocolate hazelnut cranberry bark! Once again, the tartness of the cranberry was very nice against the super-sweet white chocolate, and the hazelnuts are always welcome, in my book. This was a little bit different but quite tasty. There were a few other little gifty items that would be cute for Christmas stockings, such as the "Apple Pie" pate de fruit, which is shaped like a mini pie and has a spicy, pleasant flavor:

Willamette Valley Confectionery

and the "naughty and nice" sugar plum and candy coal packs: Willamette Valley Confectionery

I've got to say, this was a HIGHLY delightful parcel to receive, and everyone with whom I shared the spoils of my sweet treasure agreed, they'd be happy to be gifted by Willamette Valley Confectionery again. 

Luckily, even if you're not in Oregon, they'll ship to you--find them online here.

Tuesday
Oct162012

Trick or Sweet: Candy Corn Upside Down Cake

Recently, I asked my favorite Pineapple Upside-Down Cake recipe a serious question: "What would you like to be for Halloween this year?".

After considering various options, such as Doughnut Upside-Down Cake, Tarte Tatin, and various other options for the inverted dessert, we decided to go with something festive: Candy Corn Upside-Down Cake.

It was simple enough to do: just substitute candy corn for the pineapple requested in the original recipe. But what happened when I baked it up was a surprise: the brown sugar and butter topping fused with the melted candy corn to form some sort of unholy, monstrous Halloween caramel-sugar topping, which dripped back into the cake when inverted. The result? The entire buttery cake tasted like it had been basted in candy corn. And if you're a candy corn lover, that might just be a beautiful thing.

Even Unicorn agrees!

Candy Corn Upside Down Cake

9 servings

  • 1/3 cup (about 5 tablespoons) butter, plus 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened and divided
  • 2/3 cup (about 6 ounces) packed light brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups candy corn
  • 1 1/2 cups (7 1/2 ounces) all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (about 7 ounces) granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup milk (whole or 2 percent)

Procedure

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Place the butter in a 9-inch square baking pan, and set it in the oven until melted (it is fine to do this as the oven preheats). Remove the pan from the oven and gently tilt so that the butter coats the entire bottom of the pan. Sprinkle brown sugar evenly over the butter. Sprinkle candy corn evenly on top.
  2. In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt.  
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and granulated sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the eggs, mixing until incorporated. Add the flour mixture alternately with the milk, in 2 to 3 additions, pausing to scrape down the sides of the bowl with each addition. Beat on low speed until fully incorporated. Pour the batter into the pan, taking care not to dislodge the carefully planted candy corn.  
  4. Set a cookie tray under the cake in the oven, in case the candy bubbles or drips. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out mostly clean, 45 to 50 minutes.  
  5. Immediately place a heatproof serving plate upside down over the pan; in one swift, sure motion, flip the plate and pan over so that the cake is now on the plate. Leave the pan in place for several minutes so the gooey mixture can drip down over the cake. After the dripping is done, lift off the pan. Serve still slightly warm. Store, loosely covered, at room temperature.
Wednesday
Apr112012

Regional Sweets: Mom Blakeman's Creamed Pull Candy

Mom Blakeman's

How can I describe Mom Blakeman's Creamed Pull Candy in a way you'll understand?

Well, here goes. First, imagine taffy.

 But not sticky like taffy. Maybe the smoothness of taffy, but with the melty texture of a butter-mint.

...but even more butteriness. Like a dab of buttercream frosting in there, too. But not a fancy meringue buttercream...more like the grocery-store birthday cake frosting that you probably would never admit you like to your foodie friends.

Imagine all of these separate aspects, and now swirl them into a sort of nugget of candy. A deliciously rich nugget of creamy candy. Now you're getting the idea of the magic that is Mom Blakeman's.

Mom Blakeman's

I honestly forget where I first heard about this candy. Maybe my college roommate, who was from Kentucky? Or perhaps one of my awesome friends in KY like Brigitte or Stella? I don't know. But I definitely know how I first tasted it: a reader, Melanie, sent me a tub of the stuff. Related: I like Melanie.

Naturally, I got curious about this sweet treat's pedigree. Founded in 1961, the company was founded by Mom herself--here's what I learned:

The website told me a little more about the candy itself: "The candy is better-known in local community as "cream" or "pull" candy. Creamed Pull Candy is a team effort involving several people to cook, pour it on cold marble, pull, cut, cream, pack and seal the candy. Making creamed pull candy is an art passed from generation to generation."

And then it told me the fascinating story of how the company took off.

 Maxine "Mom" Blakeman started making her creamed pull candy in her home in Lancaster, KY in the 1940's. She had a restaurant on the public square and made her candy available to her patrons. She was known for her generosity. During World War II, she always served any armed service men who came into her restaurant a free meal.

Residents of Lancaster who knew Mom Blakeman still talk of how she always had some candy for any school children who stopped by. After her husband passed away, she sold her large house to a couple on the condition that she could live in and make her candy in the two story garage on the property.

Mom Blakeman's candy was well known throughout central Kentucky. Mom Blakeman was encouraged to market her candy in 1961 by her good friend, Colonel Harlan Sanders, founder of Kentucky Fried Chicken. Upon her death in 1970, the business was passed down to a friend who worked with Mom. Changing owners only a few times, the company is family owned and operated with one focus...making great candy.

Sweet! I always love a good backstory with my delicious treat. And this is certainly a sweet one--I can understand why Mom Blakeman's is sought out from far and wide! It's exactly the type of treat you'd really miss if you moved away from a place where it was readily available.

Mom Blakeman's

Of course, happily, in the age of the internet, we can order online and get it delivered to our door. Should you want to do such a thing, hit up the Mom Blakeman's website here. I also found a creamed pull candy recipe here.

Wednesday
Mar072012

Sweet Potatoes: An Introduction to Irish Potato Candy

Image: Flickr user srbth

Sure, you've heard of potatoes from Ireland. But have you ever heard of Irish Potato Candy?

 

Image: Oh Ryan's Candies

No, they're not made of potato (although candies made with potato do exist!). 

Comprised of coconut cream coated in cinnamon, they're a Philadelphia tradition, with varieties produced by just about every confectioner in town (Whole Foods even has their own version!). 

But one of the most ubiquitous specimens around town is the version made by a company called Oh Ryan's. As they say on their website, 

Irish Potatoes are not Irish and there is no potato in them. A Philadelphia tradition for over 100 years, they are a coconut cream center rolled in cinnamon. Because they are rolled in cinnamon, they look like small potatoes. They traditionally come out for St. Patrick's Day, hence the name “Irish Potatoes.”

In spite of it being a long-standing Philadelphia tradition, Oh Ryan's has only been around since 1989--

Oh Ryan's Irish Potatoes is a family-run company that has been making Irish Potatoes since 1989. We named the company after our 1-year-old son, Ryan, since he has such a nice Irish name.

Now that Ryan is all grown up, he works alongside his father in the company that has grown to be the largest producer of Irish Potatoes today. 90% of our sales have been in the Philadelphia area, but we have shipped them all across the country from Massachusetts to Florida, to California, and as far away as Nome, Alaska.

But in that time, they have established themselves as the largest purveyor of the sweet potatoes.

201103march 010

But I digress. The point is that the candies are labeled "Irish" more because of their look than because of any Irish ingredient or candy-making tradition (not unlike the "Potato" pastry made by Nielsen's in Seattle). And, to that point, here's a recipe from the 1920s that I found on The Food Timeline:

"Candy Irish Potatoes for St. Patrick's Day Take five pounds of bon bon cream and into knead one pound of almond paste, stiffening it with XXXX powdered sugar while working, if necessary. When thoroughly kneaded, shape into small spuds about the size of an ink bottle, and while moist rub with powdered cinnamon. Use almond paste or pignolia nuts pressed in side to represent eyes or sprouts, or simply make little dents for the eyes. Care must be taken to bet the cinnamon to stick good." ---Rigby's Reliable Candy Teacher, W.O. Rigby, 19th edition 1920s? (p. 208)

Interestingly, the site also mentions that "Curiously, we do not find any potato candies in our historic British confectionery texts, candy reference books, books on potatoes, or Irish culinary sources."

Unlike another potato-inspired candy, the Idaho Spud, the Irish Potato seems to proliferate primarily around St. Patrick's day time. And while it is most popular in the Philadelphia area, California-based See's Candies also makes a version. As I learned from Serious Eats, 

But the West Coast confectionery See's shouldn't get all the credit for the spud trompe l'oeil. Just outside Philadelphia in Linwood, Pennsylvania, Oh Ryan'sships about 80,000 pounds of these spud-candies per year, mostly within the state. It's a Philly-area tradition that spans back 100 years, also made from scratch. They start with a special sugar made for candy-makers, then make vanilla buttercream and add coconut flavoring and macaroon coconut for flavor and texture.

As the Serious Eats article concludes, "File this under another Americanism that Irish people in Ireland probably have no clue about."

To obtain some Potato Candy for yourself, go to See's Candies or buy Oh Ryan's Irish Potatoes online here. To make your own, here's a recipe. 

Thursday
Dec152011

Sweet Idea: Chocolate Covered Candy Canes Recipe for Serious Eats

Candy canes are great and all. But they're even better when they're coated in chocolate.

Coating your candy canes in a rich robe of chocolate raises the bar for the classic holiday sweet, imparting both a delicious flavor contrast and adding a festive visual appeal. They're a sweet party favor, an easy way to make your hot chocolate more awesome, and--bonus--they're really easy and quick to prepare.

Note: This recipe works best with candy canes that are about 6 inches long, or peppermint sticks; if using mini candy canes, use extreme care so you don't burn yourself with the hot melted chocolate!

For the full entry and recipe, visit Serious Eats!

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