I am my father’s daughter.
I inherited his sense of humor, his compassionate heart, the way his hair silvered as it grayed, and his temper
ament. I inherited his inventive spirit, although I don’t use as much duct tape. I also inherited his love of candy.
Sears sold all sorts of candies, roasted nuts, and popcorn. The smell of the popcorn wafted throughout the store, beckoning to us like a fragrant pied piper. Eventually, when Mom couldn’t stand our whining anymore, she would release us to Dad, who would take us down to the candy counter and let us buy a quarter’s worth each of candy.
The candy counter sold candy from bulk bins. The person behind the counter would scoop up an appropriate amount of candy and put it on the scales, adjusting the quantity as needed, and then slide it all into a paper bag — a bag full of potential.
Sometimes I would get the chewy, coconut Neapolitans. Sometimes, the fruit slices. Sometimes I would get the bridge mix, although Dad would usually buy a big bag of it for all of us to share. (Not knowing anything about the card game, I thought it was a funny name for a bag of chocolate.) I would pick out as many malted milk balls as I could and eat those first.
The milk chocolate melted smooth on your tongue. Finally you gave into the urge to bite into the soft crunch of the malted milk insides. They were big. Almost too big to put a whole one in your kid-sized mouth. Dad loved them too, but I usually won the most-malted-milk-ball contest, because he loved the chocolate-covered peanuts more.
Thanks for all the quarters, Dad. Here’s some malted milk fudge in your honor. Happy Father’s Day!
3 cups sugar
1/2 cup butter or margarine (1 stick)
2/3 cup evaporated milk
4-6 tbsp malted milk powder (depending on how malty you want the fudge)
1 package milk chocolate chips (12 oz. or so)
1 jar (7 oz.) marshmallow creme
- Heat sugar, butter, milk, and malted milk powder over medium heat to a full, rolling boil in 3 qt. heavy sauce pan, stirring constantly.
- Boil on medium heat until the candy thermometer reaches 234 degrees F, stirring constantly.
- Take the pan off the heat and add the chips to the mix.
- Stir in the marshmallow creme.
- Stir until the mixture thickens and starts to look dull, and pour it into the foil-lined or buttered cake pan. Let it cool for a couple of hours, then cut it into bite-sized squares.
- Store the fudge in air-tight containers.
NOTE: This is a soft fudge because of the added malt. You might want to keep it in the refrigerator between servings.