Friday, December 15, 2006

Tuesday, December 15, 1925

Tuesday, December 15, 1925

Decided I would have to make the candy for Christmas this year to make the money last, so as this is the last week of school had better get at it. So this AM while the two boys were at school and Albert in kindergarten, I made a batch of peppermint. Then ironed all afternoon.

(Aunt Marjorie called me a week or so ago and suggested that I post some of Grandma's candy recipes with the diary, and I agreed that was a great idea. She wrote that she thinks the peppermint candy Grandma made was probably the fondant candy with food coloring added. So, here is the recipe...

Fondant Candy
3 Cups Sugar
1 Cub Water (cold)
Nut Halves
1/4 Teaspon Cream of Tartar
Flavoring (Peppermint, Vanilla, etc.)
Chocolate coating (optional)
Have 2 - 3 inches of cold water in the sink. Have a marble slab or space on counter greased with butter.
Heat sugar and water slowly while stirring to dissolve sugar.Then cook quickly without stirring. While the liquid is boiling, drop in cream of tartar and food coloring (if you want it to be a color).
Cook to soft ball (236 degrees F.), then remove from heat and set pan in cold water in sink. When cool, add flavoring (1 tsp. vanilla, or about 4 drops of peppermint, or any flavor you wish).
Remove pan from water and beat mixture until no longer shiny. Turn onto greased counter, grease hands with butter, then knead and make into small balls (size of large marbles - aggies, like little boys played with) and either push nut halves on each, or coat the balls with melted chocolate.
When firm, store in tins.
Aunt Marjorie wrote, "As long as I remember the whole family helped make candy. The big boys helped Mother beat & knead and form the candy into balls, and we little ones could push the nuts on to the balls".
My own mother, Eleanor, also made candy every year and our teachers loved to get a box of the homemade candy. She still helps make candy each year, and has gotten several granddaughters interested in the family recipes.)


  1. sister with the homestead and the bell3:15 AM, December 15, 2006

    Let the candy making begin! Candy making is as traditional for the family as putting up the Christmas tree. I am not a cook, but I have made it a point to learn to make the Christmas candy - cinnamon roll, divinity, home-made caramels, fudge, and on and on and on. My daughter, age 9 is very intrigued with the process and is well on her way to mastering the secrets of successful candy-making. We've already made 2 batches of caramels, a batch of fudge and a batch of cinnamon roll (those seem to have disappeared already - hmmmm.... wonder what happened to them?). Last year, cousin Maureen (Marjorie's youngest) came over and we made candy together, comparing and arguing over the different techniques we have both learned from our mothers, Marjorie and Eleanor. It created a wonderful Christmas memory. I am grateful to have this wonderful tradition to be able to hand down to my daughter.

  2. Apparently the candy making ability skipped a generation in my part of the family. I cannot make candy at all. But hope is not lost, my youngest daughter is a great baker and candy maker. I guess I got the sewing, quilting, gardening genes instead. I just eat the candy that everyones else makes.
    The older sister

  3. Kathy may have missed out on the candy making genes, but she has the special touch needed to make breads. Kneeding bread is a talent I don't have

  4. Just wanted to let you know that I've been reading every day and just love these posts! Thank you.

  5. This posting is so sweet, in more ways than one! I love that you've included the recipe that Ruth probably used. What a great tradition to hand down.

    I don't remember my mother ever making candy when I was a child, but I do recall rolling out cookie dough and cutting them out and the fun of decorating with colored frosting. When I got married, I learned candy recipes from my mother-in-law and I still make them with my daughter every year. Great memories!