Buttermilk Candy rich, with a hint of tartness

Recipe Finder

January 10, 2001|By Ellen Hawks | Ellen Hawks,SUN STAFF

V. Hartman of Baltimore is seeking a recipe for Buttermilk Candy, which she calls "a sinfully rich treat."

Beth Hunter of Timonium responded. "Here is the recipe that V. Hartman wanted," she wrote. "It comes from `Southern Heritage's Gift Receipts Cookbook,' 1985. This is a wonderfully rich candy with just a hint of tartness from the buttermilk.

"Pay special attention to the temperature of the soft-ball stage; too low and the candy won't harden, too high and the candy will be too hard."

Buttermilk Candy

Makes about 20 pieces

3 cups granulated sugar

1 cup buttermilk

1 teaspoon cream of tartar

3 tablespoons butter

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

2 cups coarsely chopped pecans or walnuts, if desired

Combine sugar and buttermilk in a medium saucepan, mixing well. Slowly bring to a boil, stirring constantly, until sugar dissolves. Cover and cook 2 to 3 minutes to wash down sugar crystals from sides of pan. Uncover and cook, stirring occasionally, until mixture reaches the soft-ball stage, 234 degrees. Stir in cream of tartar.

Remove from heat; stir in butter and vanilla. Beat by hand with a spoon 2 to 3 minutes or until mixture is creamy and begins to thicken. Stir in nuts, if using. Working rapidly, drop mixture by rounded tablespoons onto waxed paper; let cool. Remove from waxed paper and store in an airtight container.

Tester Laura Reiley's comments: "Be careful when you add the butter and vanilla. The mixture bubbles up fiercely before you stir it to combine. This would make a wonderful ... gift. The buttermilk gives the candy an old-timey charm."

Recipe requests

Eleanor Nichols of Longmont, Colo., is looking for a recipe that her mother made when she was a child. "I'm 65 and it was called Snippydoodle or Snickerdoodle. It was a batter coffeecake Mom made in a pie plate and topped with a covering of sugar and cinnamon."

Mary Ellen Psaltis of Olympia, Wash., wants an eggplant parmesan recipe that she writes, "was printed in the Esquire magazine some 20 years ago. It was a World's Best Recipe by Walter Mondale, and apparently the sauce for it was superb."

If you are looking for a recipe or can answer a request for a hard-to-find recipe, write to Ellen Hawks, Recipe Finder, The Sun, 501 N. Calvert St., Baltimore, Md. 21278. If you send more than one recipe, please put each on a separate sheet of paper with your name, address and daytime phone number. Important: Please list the ingredients in order of use, and note the number of servings each recipe makes. Please type or print contributions. Letters may be edited for clarity.

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