I’ve recently learned that most people have no clue what Irish Potato (Candies) are. Upon looking it up, I found that it’s a treat that has originated (and stayed) in the Philadelphia area. Since I’ve always lived in NJ, I just figured that they were as universal as cookies or cupcakes. My bad.
(While I’m on the subject, does anybody know what a hoagie is? I’ve used the term “hoagie” my whole life- yet, when I went to NY, nobody had any clue what I was talking about. It’s so strange how dialects work).
Anyway, back on topic. For those who don’t know, Irish Potatoes become popular where I live every March, around St. Patrick’s Day. Growing up, homeroom mothers would always make them for any classroom parties we had in March. Typically, they are small potato-shaped treats made with lots of powdered sugar, coconut, cream cheese, butter, vanilla, and cinnamon. They are neither potatoes or Irish. Regardless, it’s one of those things everyone eats around this time of year, kinda like the Shamrock Shakes. To find the recipe for this, you can just google it.
When I began cooking for myself, however, I became turned off by the ingredients used to make these “potatoes.” Instead, I’ve made my own “potatoes.” Since this candy is not an Irish tradition, I feel no guilt with remodeling it. And I mean by a lot. So, does it taste like the Irish Potato candy? A little. More important, does it taste good? Yup.
Still, if you have eaten Irish Potatoes before, don’t expect the stuff you find in the stores. If you’ve never had it and have nothing to compare it to, feel free to still try.
Hey, you can’t miss what you never had, right?
“Irish Potato” Candy (Redone)
2 cups unsweetened shredded coconut
1 tbsp vanilla protein powder
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
In a food processor, combine coconut, protein powder, and vanilla. Blend until coconut becomes moist and sticks to the sides of the processor, about 5-7 minutes. (NOTE: you want to stop blending right before it becomes a butter. If it does become coconut butter, simply harden slightly by putting in the fridge for a few minutes). Pinch into little balls or press into a tbsp and slide out in order to get a uniform shape. Roll in cinnamon until coated. Keep at room temperature.