Monday, March 4, 2019

A Gift from Granny

by Tally Holt

from the Vintage Sweets series by Kaye George, coming 2020


My grandmother left me a treasure! When my mom told me that my granny wanted me to have her recipes, I thought, “That’s nice.” Little did I know.

When I returned to my Austin apartment from her funeral in Fredericksburg, Texas, two boxes arrived. The first was marked fragile and contained mostly packing material. Nestled in the middle was the ornate mantel clock that I remembered being over my grandmother’s fireplace. As a child, I had sat on the floor in my granny’s house playing paper dolls and listening to its comfortable ticking for many hours.

I carefully lifted it out and ran my hands over the smooth wood, then traced the carvings around the face. I opened the door on its back and wound it. After I set it on a shelf and heard the ticking in my own apartment, tears sprang to my eyes.

I wiped my eyes and opened the second box to find several more things from my grandmother’s estate. I was charmed by the faded one-foot square hooked rug of a yellow rose that I had made for my granny when I was small, and by some of the dangly earrings I’d been permitted to use for playing dress up. But I was enthralled by the old-fashioned metal box of recipes. My granny had been the best candy maker ever. And these were her old-time candy recipes. I had my granny’s candy recipes!

My friend Yolanda Bella had been after me to move back to Fredericksburg, to sell my bakery and open a shop in the vacant space next to her basket boutique, Bella’s Baskets. Maybe I could open a vintage candy shop. I started trying out recipes. Here’s one. I’ll interpret because Granny’s notes are a little hard to read. NOTE: Don’t add too much Bailey’s. If you do, it will taste good, but you’ll have to eat it with a spoon.


1/2 can condensed milk
2 cups chocolate chips
1/4-1/3 cup Bailey’s Irish Cream

Spray a 12x6 bar pan and line with foil (you’ll be glad you did both).
Melt the chocolate in the microwave for 1 minute, stirring after 30 seconds. Use a Pyrex 1 quart   glass measuring cup.
Microwave the milk and chocolate together for about 3 minutes, stirring halfway through.
Mix in the Bailey’s.
Pour into the lined bar pan and set. Either leave it to cool at room temp, or set it in the fridge.
Cut, eat.


  1. What a touching story, thank you for sharing. I remember sitting on the floor in my grandparent's house listening to the Cuckoo clock while coloring or playing. I now have that clock, but have yet to get it fixed. I do love to look at it though. This sounds delicious and can't wait to try it.

  2. I love this story about the gifts left to you by your grandmother. I remember some of the things I played with at my grandparent's house. This fudge sounds delicious. Thank you for sharing.

  3. I'll answer for Tally, since she doesn't make her appearance until March of 2020. Thank you, Marci and Eileen! I'll admit that I, the author, gave Tally that recipe (and said it was from her grandmother). It works great. As long as you don't add too much Bailey's. More is not better in this case!