Author of Ed Engoron’s Choclatique, Running Press, 2011
It was in the late ‘60’s. Jim Jordon and I hopped on to a United Airlines plane—first class no less—and headed off to Chicago. Jim was a famous commercial director and I was the house art director at Cascade Pictures. We were going to meet with the president of the Curtiss Candy Company about designing and producing their first television commercial for Baby Ruth Candy. I had my sketches and story boards all packed up and Jim had his smile and wit. The meeting went well and we were hired. When we left, we were both given a gift box of Curtiss Candy products (Baby Ruth, Oh Henry, Butterfingers). I was never bashful about eating candy bars of any kind (still not), and a Baby Ruth was no exception. I loved the flavor combination of real chocolate, nougat and peanuts. The following recipe is a very good imitation of a great American tradition—Baby Ruth.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Ready In: 30 minutes
Yield: About 18 bars
1 cup peanut butter (I like Skippy)
1 cup light corn syrup (Karo)
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
6 cups corn flakes cereal (or you can also use crispy puffed rice)
1 cup Choclatique Dark Chocolate Chips
1 cup salted Virginia peanuts
2 cups of Choclatique Heirloom Milk Chocolate Pastilles, melted
- Butter a 9 x 13-inch baking dish.
- In a large saucepan over medium heat, combine the peanut butter, corn syrup, brown sugar and white sugar. Cook, stirring occasionally, until smooth. Remove from heat and quickly mix in the corn flakes, chocolate chips and peanuts until evenly coated.
- Press the entire mixture gently into the prepared baking dish. Allow to cool completely before cutting into bars.
- Melt the milk chocolate chips in a double boiler or in a microwave oven.
- Roll the bars into individual round logs and dip them into the melted milk chocolate to enrobe.
- Place them on waxed paper to let them set-up. Eat immediately or twist-wrap them in wax paper to savor later on.
The Baby Ruth Back Story: Do you know how the Baby Ruth got its name? Although the name of the candy bar sounds a lot like the name of the famous baseball player, Babe Ruth, the Curtiss Candy Company claimed it was named after President Grover Cleveland’s daughter, Ruth. The candy maker named the bar “Baby Ruth” in 1921, as Babe Ruth’s fame was on the rise, over 30 years after President Cleveland had left the White House. The company did not negotiate an endorsement deal with the Babe. Was the story true or was it a devious way to avoid having to pay the Babe any royalties? Or, was it actually named after the granddaughter of Mr. and Mrs. George Williamson, the candy makers who actually developed and sold the original formula to Curtiss Candy in 1921?
Note: Baby Ruth is a registered trademark of NestleUSA.