The food trend I’ve seen circulating the interwebs lately is “fooling” your guests by serving them savory-looking food that’s actually sweet.
Aside from April Fool’s Day, I didn’t really the see a point, but when I sampled Irish “potatoes” from the The Original Fudge Kitchen in Cape May, I decided to try this trend myself.
Despite its name, this coconut confection wasn’t created in Ireland, but originates from Philadelphia.
Since the candies do not contain potatoes (although some do), this recipe requires no cooking – a huge bonus given the sudden surge of hot weather we’re experiencing – and you probably already have most the ingredients in your pantry, making this one of the easiest recipes I’ve posted.
It’s perfect for Saint Patrick’s Day, of course, but the coconut cream base makes a nice addition to a summer soiree.
If you’re not a cinnamon fan, swap it for cocoa powder, and you’ll get a similar “potato” skin effect.
I used vegan butter (Earth Balance) and cream “cheese”, but you can also use regular butter and cream cheese (preferably Philly) if you like.
Vegan/Not Vegan Irish Potato Candy
- ¼ cup butter (or Earth Balance), softened
- 4 ounces cream cheese (or vegan cream “cheese”), softened
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 4 cups powdered sugar
- 2½ cups unsweetened flaked coconut
- 1 – 1½ tablespoons cinnamon and/or cocoa powder
- pine nuts (optional)
- brown paper bag (optional)
- In a large bowl with an electric mixer, beat butter, cream cheese and vanilla.
- Slowly add powdered sugar and continue mixing to incorporate – scraping sides when necessary.
- Add coconut and continue to mix until combined.
- Roll mixture into tablespoon-size balls.
6. Once coated, roll candies into a potato shape – if desired.
7. Set on a parchment or foil lined cookie sheet and chill until set.
8. Store candies in refrigerator until ready to serve, and serve them in a brown paper bag – a.k.a. a potato sack.