P.E.I. potato fudge is big hit
By Kathy Birt
A recipe for potato fudge that has been around forever
By Kathy Birt
A recipe for potato fudge that has
been around forever and a day has prompted a former Ontario woman to
capitalize on a novel idea in Prince Edward Island.
|Mary Capper, owner of Spudj Truffles and Treats in South Pinette, P.E.I., is proud of this basket filled with quarter pounders of potato fudge which proved very popular throughout the fall leading up to Christmas at the Charlottetown Farmers’ Market. Photos by Kathy Birt|
|It’s not the first taste of potato fudge for Pat, partner to Mary Capper, owner and operator of Spudj Truffles and Treats in South Pinette, P.E.I. Capper is a regular at the Charlottetown Farmers’ Market where the unusual, but tasty, potato fudge is catching on with customers. |
A recipe for potato fudge that has been around forever and a day has prompted a former Ontario woman to capitalize on a novel idea in Prince Edward Island.
Spudj is the name Mary Capper, of South Pinette, P.E.I., has given to the combination of P.E.I. potatoes, chocolate and sugar, with a mix of flavourful additions.
Capper says she tasted potato fudge about 25 years ago when she lived on the Island for a brief time. “I decided that I would move back to the Island after retirement (from my other life) and this is what I would do for a living,” says Capper.
With a little research, Capper discovered no one else was selling potato fudge and she started her business called Spudj Truffles and Treats. Wanting to have some type of signature, she named a summer shop on her home property The Gingham Basket, and had gingham boxes and bags designed that offer, what she calls, “a real country feel.”
She tied everything into the design, selling the fudge truffles and treats in the gingham bags and boxes.
As well, she designed a mascot – Mr. Spudj. “I do crafts and tole painting, so came up with the design. We have Mr. Spudj on our shop sign outside of our store and at the farmers’ market.”
Getting a booth at the Charlottetown Farmers’ Market has extended the selling season of Capper’s sweet and savory product. She says most people hesitate when trying the fudge, but notes, “As soon as they taste it, they love it.”
And why not? With truffle and treat flavours like orange coconut, cranberry almond, maple walnut and peanut butter to tempt one’s sweet tooth, people are coming back again and again. “On top of all that, we make potato fudge brownies,” says Capper. “With the maple flavour, we make little maple leaf shapes.”
Telling customers that the truffles and fudge have a third less sugar than a traditional recipe is even more enticing. “I see so many articles written in magazines that say potato is a good sugar substitute,” she notes.
Capper bakes and designs special seasonal treats for Thanksgiving, Halloween and Christmas. She also produces a special treat called the “quarter pounder,” a molded quarter pound of fudge decorated with yellow and white chocolate and bits of liquorices. When finished, it looks like a dressed baked potato wrapped in foil.
Capper says the fudge is easy to make, but it’s labour intensive to do all the rolling of the truffles. “We are able to do them in large batches and freeze then as we go. They freeze very well, and come out of the frozen state very fresh.”
She only uses Russet potatoes for the fudge. “It has the best starchy quality,” she claims.
Capper is in the process of putting a new building on her property to accommodate a separate kitchen for the fudge making, and she is working with the Food Technology Center on the shelf life of the product. “Right now, it lasts about two to three weeks out of the fridge, and about two months in (the fridge). I’d like to have the fudge in more craft shops around the Island, so we are hoping to double the shelf life.”