I am constantly amazed at how animated and talkative people get when you mention food. The mere aroma of certain foods can evoke memories that transport us back to a special place and time. Food can bridge the gap between all ages, races and ethnicities.
Let's face it, the only thing that should ever come between people is a table and some serving bowls.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Sweet Memories

I miss the days of penny candy, not just because you could get a bagful for a quarter. But also because some of the candies I loved are just nowhere to be found. I have been able to find some like; Zotz and black Jack Gum to name a couple. There are some great places to get nostalgic candy these days such as; ‘Hometown Favorites, Groovy Candy, Vermont Country Store, just to name a few. But even with that, I’ve noticed that some of the recipes have changed and they are not exactly as I remember them.
One of my favorite candies in the world is Sponge Candy also known as Molasses Puffs. Granted, you can find Sponge Candy just about everywhere. They even have it in the bulk section of my supermarket. But it just isn’t like the one I use to get as a kid.
We use to get our candy from a store called “Franco’s” it was about three blocks from our house. This store had Sponge Candy that came in a bag the size of a deck of cards. When you opened the bag there was this one big solid piece of Sponge Candy (without the chocolate coating) and it actually looked like a sponge (kind of like an O-Cello sponge you get in the supermarket for cleaning). I wish I could remember the name…..
Oh well! It’s a great memory never the less and I can still get my Sponge Candy fix when necessary.

Sponge Candy A.K.A Molasses Puffs

1 c. sugar
1 c. dark corn syrup
1 tbsp. white vinegar
1 tbsp. baking soda

1. Combine sugar, corn syrup, and vinegar in a large saucepan. Cook, stirring constantly until sugar dissolves. Cover pan for 1 minute to allow the steam to wash down the sugar crystals that cling to side of pan, or whip down the crystals with a damp cloth.
2. Uncover pan; insert candy thermometer. Cook without stirring until candy thermometer reaches 300 degrees (hard crack stage).
3. Remove from heat; stir in baking soda. Pour into a buttered 9 inch square pan. It's not necessary to spread, as the mixture will bubble and spread itself. Cool in pan on wire rack.
4. Break cooled sponge in pieces. Store 2-3 weeks in a tightly covered container with foil or plastic wrap between layers.

If you like yours dipped in chocolate all you have to do is melt some chocolate chips in the microwave. Coat each piece in the chocolate and let cool.


Susan said...

Occasionally I will see these done up in squares dipped in chocolate. They are quite good, BUT not as good as home made, I'll bet. After tackling Turkish Delight yesterday, I think I can do these, too. You've got a really cute blog here.

Julie said...

You've got that right Susan, homemade is always better.