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Desserts Eat Snacks

Old Fashioned Potato Candy

Have you ever heard of candy made from a potato?

For years my mom has talked of this mysterious potato candy that she loved as a little girl. She would spend magical summers at her grandparents house gleefully running through grapevine arbors, relishing in the homemade jams and jellies made from the grapes. Hours would melt away watching and helping her grandmother work her magic in the kitchen. Whenever homemade mashed potatoes were served with dinner my mom knew that delicious potato candy wouldn’t be far behind.

My mom and I have been planning to make this sweet treat for, well, more times than I care to count. Somehow life always seems to get in the way and we never seem to get it done. While at the cabin last weekend, the earth, sun and stars of potato-making-candy aligned and a rich, decadent fudge-like candy was the result.

Oh. My. Heavens. Was it good.

It all began while antiquing.

My beloved antiquing.

Something marvelous always comes from antiquing. We couldn’t believe our eyes when we stumbled upon this little darling…

 

What is that you ask?

It’s an antique potato masher.

Everybody needs one, right? 

After spying this precious find, we looked at each other knowingly and said, “guess we’re making homemade mashed potatoes for dinner tonight!”

I must say that I enjoyed the daylights out of that sweet little potato masher. It made homemade mashed potato making all the merrier.

The next day we set to work to recreate the simple yet delicious candy.

Leftover homemade mashed potatoes, powdered sugar, vanilla, salt and peanut butter is all you need.

Homemade mashed potatoes are key. They are thicker, heartier and act as a better binder than the boxed mashed potatoes.

Put homemade mashed potatoes, vanilla, and salt into a bowl and add one cup of powdered sugar at a time, while kneading with your hands, until mixture becomes a firm fudge-like consistency.

We played around with the ratios and found that 1/2 cup of mashed potatoes mixed with 5 cups powdered sugar made the perfect batch. Evidently depending on the way in which the mashed potatoes are made, can effect how much powdered sugar you may need. So feel free to use a little less or more than my recipe suggests. Just make sure that the mixture is firm enough to hold its shape and not so dry that it crumbles. Does that make sense?

I recommend dividing the mixture in half. I found that it was much easier to work with a smaller amount when rolling and cutting the candy.

Sprinkle powdered sugar on your work surface and rolling pin then roll into a 1/4 inch thickness.

Spread a thin, but not too thin, layer of peanut butter on top, about 1/4 inch. If you use too much it will squish out the sides when rolling it up.

Then carefully roll into a loaf and cover with plastic wrap or wax paper and chill for at least 1-2 hours before cutting into 1/2 inch slices.

That’s it! Let me just tell you that I had no idea how divine this potato candy would actually be. It tasted like peanut butter fudge.

 

I can’t wait to experiment with some other favorite combinations, like chocolate, or Nutella! Mmmmmmmmmmmm. Seriously, the possibilities are endless!

Now go ahead, impress your friends & family with some good old fashioned love today! Wait till you see the look on their face when you tell them that it’s made with mashed potatoes!

xo-

Wenderly

Old Fashioned Potato Candy

(makes 24 slices)

What You’ll Need:

1/2 cup leftover (preferably homemade) mashed potatoes
5 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon salt
4 Tablespoons Peanut Butter (approximately)

What to Do:

Put mashed potatoes, vanilla, and salt into a bowl and add one cup of powdered sugar at a time, while kneading with your hands until mixture becomes a firm fudge-like consistency. You may need a tad more or less of the powdered sugar depending on how the mashed potatoes where made. Make adjustments depending on the texture of the mix, you’ll want it to be firm & dry enough to keep its shape but not too dry that would cause it to crumble.

Divide the mixture in half, sprinkle work surface & rolling pin with powdered sugar and roll the potato candy into a 1/4 inch thickness. Spread a thin, but not too thin, layer of peanut butter on top, about 1/4 inch. If you use too much it will squish out the sides when rolling it up.

Gently roll into a loaf and cover with plastic wrap or wax paper and chill for at least 1-2 hours hours before cutting into 1/2 inch thick slices (approximately 12 per loaf).

Enjoy!

 

 

 

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Eat Main Courses Sides Snacks

P B & J Snowman Sandwiches

I look out the window at the moment and all I see is snow, snow, snow.

Beautiful, quiet, white snow stretched out over the grass like one big blanket.

When my girls were younger *sniff* and would get all bundled up in their darling snow gear, eyes glistening while anxiously dancing around until they could finally skip outside for a day of winter wonder, I was always thinking of fun ways to welcome them back into the warmth. Hot cocoa with fluffy marshmallows was a must but one day I decided to get creative with lunch. I peeked outside to see them working diligently on a snowman and thought how fun it would be to bring their creation inside! It was then that the snowman peanut butter & jelly sandwich was born.

As I’ve been watching it snow here in suburbia I’ve been a bit nostalgic remembering those carefree-snow-fun-filled-days as I run my teenage daughter to mall & organize play-dates for my 10 year old rather than bundle them up their darling snow gear.

*sniff*

Then I remembered the precious little snowman sandwich…and a smile spread across my face (and heart) and I got to work.

A little food therapy.

What could be better than that? It’s not a culinary breakthrough mind you but rather a sweet reminder of being a kid again, in the snow, without a care in the world building snowmen until your cheeks turn pink and numb.

This is all you need! Your favorite peanut butter & jelly, 2 slices of bread & 2 circular cookie cutters (1 small & 1 medium size).

There is just nothing like a fresh jar of peanut butter is there? That sound of the seal breaking as you unscrew the lid…

that intoxicating smell of peanuts wafting up into your nostrils as you remove the paper seal.

That first virgin dip of the knife into the smooth surface…

Heaven.

See? I really do find food and the process of making food to be therapeutic…anyone else with me?

Spread the peanut butter on one slice of bread.

Then open the gorgeous sweet jelly…

O.k. actually that happens to be strawberry preserves because I prefer preserves over jelly but a “peanut butter & strawberry preserve sandwich” just doesn’t have the same ring to it, ya know?

And spread the jelly (or preserves) onto the other slice of bread.

Place the two slices of bread together, push your small cookie cutter into the bread,

and you’ll get a sweet little circle that will become the head of your snowman. Repeat with the larger cookie cutter for the body.

Next you’ll need some fun little candy embellishments!

I used sprinkles, silver dragees, non-pareils and some fruit tape, but you could use whatever you like!

You’ll definitely need some snow…

That’s how all this fun started after all! I used powered sugar.

Now for some creativity! It’s time to decorate the little fella! Let your imagination run wild! Kids love this part as well!

I made a cap & scarf out of the fruit tape and topped with a cotton candy pomp.

An orange sprinkle as his nose and 2 blue non-pareils for his eyes,

some dragees for buttons and then a sprinkling of powdered sugar for snow!

The final touch, puffy cotton candy clouds from which a few candy snowflakes fall and you’ve got yourself the perfect little wintertime lunch for all the kids to enjoy.

I mean who wouldn’t enjoy that?

No matter what the age.

AND you get to play with your food!

Happy snowman making!

Wenderly