Spud, potato, tater, whatever you want to call it, this simple root vegetable is undoubtedly the oddest ingredient in this candy recipe. It's fun to make this potato candy and see the reactions of folks tasting it for the first time.
I will admit that I had not planned to make this recipe this year as part of my holiday baking and candy making. However, I uncovered this old fashioned gem while leafing through the ragged, stained pages of my grandmother's cookbook while looking for another recipe for a friend of mine. When I saw this recipe, I was immediately transported back to my childhood and visiting Grandma and Grandpa's at Christmas. I couldn't wait to try the recipe.
Research to find the origin of potato candy resulted in a lot of stories and claims, but there seems to be nothing definitive. This is an old recipe and very likely passed down from generation to generation. I presumed it was maybe a depression era recipe since it is made of very simple ingredients. If anyone has any history feel free to post a comment and share it with all of us.
Don't let the potato throw you. This recipe works and is super simple to make and you have to trust me, you will not taste the potato!
One important word of caution. Do not, I repeat do not, use a large potato. One about 1/3 the size of what I used would be sufficient, unless you have a very large family!
As with many of the recipes in my grandma's recipe book, it lists ingredients, not necessarily measurements and not much in the way of instructions. So there aren't quantities included, I had to make things up as I went along. Don't let this deter you from trying this recipe. I'll share my tips from the lessons learned and you can adapt and have some fun too!
1 small potato - I would recommend one no larger than 2" in diameter
1 Tablespoon butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Powdered Sugar - Make sure you have 2-4 pounds on hand; it's better to have too much on hand than not enough!
Creamy Peanut Butter
Peel the potato. Slice it and cover with water and bring to a boil. Cook until tender.
Drain the water from the potato.
Mash with a potato masher or fork.
Add the butter and vanilla and continue mashing until the mixture is smooth. You do not want any lumps.
Add a cup or so of powdered sugar, staring to incorporate it into the potato. The consistency will be very liquid like as a result of the sugar dissolving.
Continue to add the sugar, stirring it in to blend well. Eventually, the mixture will thicken. Continue to add sugar until the mixture forms a ball. You are going for a pie dough consistency. I ran out of powdered sugar so mine wasn't quite the consistency it needed to be and it was a bit too sticky.
Divide the dough into smaller amounts.
Place a sheet of parchment paper on the counter and spray it with non-stick spray. Place the first ball of "dough" on the parchment and cover with another sprayed piece of parchment. Use your rolling pin to roll the dough evenly to a 1/4-inch thickness.
Remove the top sheet of parchment. As you can see from the photo, mine was a bit sticky. I learned the trick of spraying the non-stick spray onto the parchment paper after the first couple of rollings.
Spread peanut butter over the top of the dough.
Starting on the long side, roll the peanut butter covered dough up jelly roll style.
Wraps the roll in waxed paper and refrigerate overnight.
Slice into 1/2" slices and serve. Enjoy the sweet smoothness of the candy along with the favorite memories it invokes.
.....and that's What's Cooking at Cathy's ~ Enjoy!