Fluff It Up!
Apparently not everyone is familiar with the brilliant Fluffernutter. That needs to change.
You may think you know what I’m talking about but, no, I’m not referring to the band that I’d never heard of before googling “fluff n nutter” or that black cat listed on petfinder.com. I’m talking about a peanut butter and fluff sandwich — peanut butter slathered on one piece of white bread, marshmallow Fluff on another, smooshed together to create the ultimate sticky-soft-sweet-salty snack of my childhood.
I was a peanut butter and jelly fiend when I was younger and, even as such, was all too familiar with Fluff, jelly’s ‘fruitless’ competitor. Sold by the jar in any neighborhood supermarket, this bright white, gooey-sweet spread occasionally found its way into my kitchen as an addition, not replacement, to jelly. When we made fluffernutter sandwiches, I ate my PB&J as a main course and the fluffernutter as dessert. I’d scoop the stuff on top of ice cream sundaes and spread it on chocolate chip cookies as the glue between stacked cookies. Fluff is messy. Fluff is addictive. Fluff is fun.
Some people may know of Fluff as Marshmallow Creme, as produced by Kraft and Solo, but the original “Toot Sweet Marshmallow Fluff” has been a Durkee-Mower company product since 1917. Invented and sold to Durkee-Mower by Archibald Query in Somerville, Massachusetts, Fluff is now celebrated by its founding city at the Annual Fluff Festival held in Somerville’s Union Square. One Massachusetts State Representative even proposed to make Fluffernutter the official Massachusetts State Sandwich.
Maybe Fluff is a strictly regional treat. Maybe it can’t be found on the shelves of just any grocery store chain. Lucky for those in a Fluff Desert, Baked’s Marshmallow Cream is Fluff, which is easily made with just a few pantry ingredients: sugar, corn syrup, egg whites, vanilla extract, salt, and cream of tartar. Egg whites are whipped, stabilized by salt and acidic cream of tartar, and then fluffified by beating hot sugar syrup into the mix. Don’t forget the vanilla extract at the end, which dramatically transforms the otherwise bland fluff into Fluff with a capital F.
I hadn’t eaten, seen, or heard of Fluff in at least 10 years — for all I knew, it was merely a thing of the past — until I came across Baked’s recipe for Velvet Chocolate Walnut Fudge with Olive Oil and Fleur de Sel. How does one have any relation to the other, you ask? Well, as it turns out, Fluff makes this fudge, both literally and figuratively. Granted, I couldn’t enjoy the final nut-laden product, given that I’m allergic to nuts, but my friends and colleagues described it as “decadent,” “rich,” and “sophisticated.” While they contentedly devour the fudge, I’ll gladly hoard the fluff.