Everyone and their grandmother has a recipe for fudge, but the best one comes from a congressman’s mother in York, Penn. Or so says President George W. Bush. In 2003, he was on Air Force One with U.S. Representative Todd Platts, who bragged that his mom made the best fudge in the world.
Bush took him up on the boast and tried the fudge on the eve of the State of the Union address. He liked it so much that he hand wrote a thank-you letter:
Thanks for the fudge, it was great. If you see me running mile after mile after television, please know you’re the cause.
Besides being an insider’s secret amongst politicians (like John McCain, the speaker of the house and a local mayor), “Babs” Platts presents her fudge to new neighbors and friends in nursing homes. This March, you could even buy it on eBay when Auction Inn, a local fund raising organization, sold it.
The fudge is coveted by many but obtained by a few. Luckily, I found the recipe in a regional magazine, Susquehanna Style. The secret is Jif peanut butter and marshmallow cream from Weis supermarket. Non-Pennsylvanians will have to make do without that brand of fluff, but I second the Jif recommendation. It’s my favorite commercial brand of peanut butter because of the deep, molasses flavor. I haven’t had a chance to try the recipe yet, so I’m taking all this by faith.
Regardless of how you feel about politics or the election tomorrow, you have to love the homey story behind this fudge. When I spoke to Platts for an AP story about weird foods appearing on eBay, it was clear that he’s a family man. Some people carry pictures of their kids in their wallet; Platts lets his 10-year-old son record his voicemail greeting on his cell phone. It goes something like, “Hi, this is Todd Platts’ son. He’s not here right now, so leave a message.” Even though it’s two years old, Platts won’t dare delete it because he thinks it’s perfect. How cute is that?