Jessie Oleson (aka Cakespy) drops by every Monday to share a delicious dessert recipe. —The Mgmt.
Desperate times called for desperate measures, and in the 1930s, candy was often made using an unlikely ingredient: mashed potatoes. No, really.
Potato fondant, rolled candies filled with peanut butter, and Potato Fudge were among the potato-rich candies referred to as "depression candy."
Of course, even in less depressed modern-day kitchens, these recipes are worth revisiting: turns out, potato is a surprisingly versatile candy filling, working very well with a variety of flavors and textures and making for a texture that is surprisingly creamy. This recipe for Potato Kisses is one of my personal favorites, rich with sweetened coconut. And of course, like so many things, it tastes even better with a rich coating of dark chocolate.
About the author: Jessie Oleson is a Seattle-based writer, illustrator, gallery owner, and cake anthropologist who runs Cakespy, an award-winning dessert website. She is currently at work on her first book.
- 1/2 cup unseasoned hot mashed potatoes
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 pound confectioners' sugar, sifted
- 1 teaspoon brown sugar (optional; for flavor)
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
- 3/4 cup sweetened flaked coconut
- Up to 2 teaspoons cream or milk, to thin (optional)
- 1 bag (12 ounces) chocolate morsels
- Sprinkles, to top (optional)
Cover a countertop area or large baking sheet with waxed or parchment paper.
In a medium mixing bowl, combine the mashed potatoes and butter, mixing well. Gradually add the sugar(s), blending until smooth. Stir in the vanilla extract and coconut; if the dough is too thick or won't hold together, add the milk or cream. Roll into balls (about 1 inch in diameter) and put in the freezer for about an hour.
In a medium saucepan or double boiler, melt the chocolate morsels over low heat. Once melted, remove the truffles from the freezer and coat each one in chocolate, using a skewer or fork, tapping each against the side of the pan to drip off excess.
Transfer to your sheet of parchment or waxed paper; add sprinkles if you'd like them to have a decorative finish. Let set for about 2 1/2 hours before serving.