Irish Potato Candy

Have you ever heard of such a thing?

I'm using this recipe as a part of my St. Patrick's Day series, but I believe it originated as a Pennsylvania Dutch or Amish recipe.  A few years ago, I traveled to Philadelphia for a work conference and stayed with my college friend, Ralph.  Ralph is a native Pittsburgher, much like myself, so we weren't as knowledgeable about the western part of the state and their food traditions.

When we got to a certain storefront, Ralph urged me to try this chocolate-covered truffle.  I did, and it was delicious.  It had a sweet, fluffy white center - kind of like a fluffier mounds bar.  He exclaimed, "It's potatoes!"  From then on, I always thought it was a creative and yummy way to use potatoes.  I bet sweet potatoes would work well too!

I "healthed up" these potato candy treats; traditionally, they often have tons of powdered sugar in them.  My recipe uses maple syrup to sweeten it up.  In that way, it sacrifices a bit of the fluffiness, but overall it's a bit better for you.  The finely shredded coconut adds a bit of texture and fluff to the candy.

Irish Potato Candy
1 c. mashed potatoes, cooled
2 T. coconut oil, softened
2-3 T. vanilla-infused bourbon (learn more about infusing your own!)
1 c. unsweetened coconut, finely shredded
6 T. pure maple syrup

dark chocolate, for coating

In a food processor, combine all of the ingredients and puree until smooth.

Grab a small cookie sheet and line it with parchment or wax paper.  Using a cookie scoop, scoop out at least 12 individual dollops of batter.  Freeze the batter for 20 minutes.

In the mean time, melt some dark chocolate for your coating.  After the 20 minutes have elapsed, dunk each piece of candy in the chocolate with a spoon.  Place the candy back on the parchment paper.  Repeat with the rest of the candy.  Stick the candy in the freezer for 10 more minutes to harden the chocolate.

These candies are best enjoyed in the fridge.  Before I eat them, I let them sit out on the counter for 10 minutes or so.  Yum!

Enjoy these easy truffles!