Oh MY GOSH! Now I'm craving these darn things! We have a cottage in Georgetown and I only get these Needhams once a year when I visit there. The rest of my family goes crazy for her Whoopie Pies, but me, I covet these delicacies! This is worth the drive from anywhere...and I don't even like candy much!
Potato candy? That's sweet. - The Boston Globe: "GEORGETOWN, Maine - 'What's a Needham?'
MAINSWEETS 284 Five Islands Road
(Route 127), Georgetown, Maine. 207-371-2806. www.mainsweets.com.
That's a question Patty Mains gets countless times a week at her trailer-sized candy shop and bakery in this woodsy coastal town.
For the record: Needhams are chocolate candies - Mains dips hers in dark Belgian Callebaut - filled with coconut, confectioner's sugar, butter, vanilla, and mashed potatoes. You read that correctly. A key element is potato - a fitting secret ingredient in a state famous for its spuds.
Also called 'potato candy,' Needhams are a vanishing treat, but they're still beloved for many native Mainers. The vegetable tempers the sweetness, and the butter and coconut add richness.
'The mashed potato makes it much more moist and not so sticky-sweet,' says Mains.
Mains got her Needham recipe from her grandfather, and the chubby little chocolates have become a signature item. She launched the business two summers ago after retiring from Bath Iron Works, where she had worked for 32 years.
For much of her life, Mains was known as 'the little candy girl,' the relative and co-worker who brought sweets to family gatherings and office events.
Before opening MainSweets, she took....