Sunday, December 27, 2009

Maine Potato Candy

Potato candy. Weird, right? Weird, but delightful. Also known as needhams, this is a candy I made for the holidays. I didn't have a recipe and really wanted to use a recipe from a Mainer. Marg Standish pulled through again.

You would never ever know that this sweet coconut candy has potato in it. The recipe for the middle is perfect. I wouldn't alter that at all. The chocolate coating could use some altering. Marg uses wax in her candy coating. I find this really tricking to use. I ended up removing some of the unmelted wax when the coating looked really thin but I could have removed even more. Once you dip the coconut mixture into the chocolate and remove it the coating starts to solidify immediately. It just made things really messy. They were still quite pretty and of course tasty, but I would use a little less wax next time.

Source: Marjorie Standish
Yield: 4 dozen or so

3/4 c. mashed potato
1/2 tsp. salt
2 (1 lb.) pkgs. confectioner's sugar
1 stick butter
1/2 lb. flaked coconut
2 tsp. vanilla

Pare and cook potato to make 3/4 cup mashed potato (not seasoned). Add salt. Using a double boiler place stick butter in it and melt over boiling water. Add mashed potato, confectioner's sugar, flaked coconut and vanilla.
Mix well, then turn into a buttered jelly roll pan. Spread evenly. Place in a cool place to harden. When hard, cut into small squares and dip in the following chocolate mixture.


1 (12 oz.) pkg. chocolate bits
4 sq. unsweetened chocolate
1/2 cake paraffin (2 1/2 x 2 1/2) ) Yes, the same paraffin you melt to use on top of jelly)

Use double boiler, again. Place paraffin in top over boiling water to melt. Then add the 2 kinds of chocolate. Allow chocolate to melt. Stir well to mix ingredients.
A toothpick or cake tester may be used to dip the needham squares. Hold each square above chocolate mixture after dipping so the square drains well. Place on waxed paper to harden. Recipe will make 66 good sized needhams. Halves easily.


Anonymous said...

Hello, I have thought about giving these a try and I was just wondering where I could find cake paraffin, is it available in grocery stores or only in specialy stores? I am new to candy making and have never seen that item before! Thank you.


Anonymous said...

I just leave out the works and tastes fine...great recipe

Stan Brown said...

Growing up in Maine I remember the Needhams well. My mother showed me her recipe and I've made a few batches over the years. Recently I've decided to change up the recipe by adding Habanero peppers! The last batch I added 4 peppers, finely chopped and mixed it in. This will give the candy a very low pleasant burn but nothing that will make you run for a drink. Try it out and see for yourself.

Stuttgart, Germany

~CAT^..^ said...

My Dad made this every year, I'm talking 50 years ago. My brother makes pounds-and-pounds every year for gifts. The easy way: make the filling thick enough to roll out onto a board lined w/ wax paper....cover with a thin layer of the chocolate...let that dry in a cool place....flip over onto another board and coat the other side....cut into 1"squares. We called it Potato Fudge...I've seen it called Pioneer Candy in a very old cookbook.