I acquired Three Georges Candy Shop in 1992. I also got married. It was a big year. Three Georges was a treasured Mobile southern confection tradition, so I wanted to soak up all I could from the Pappas (Pappolamporous) surviving family members about the company they had owned since it began in 1917. Euple, George's widow, Myro, George's sister, and Earl, George's little brother, were well into their seventies and they filled me with seventy-five years worth of candy stories.
The whole family was training me to make candy. The time had come for my first batch of divinity. I was nervous. We checked the weather. It had to be a dry day. Out came the big copper kettle. We opened George's small, fragile, hand-written notebook and read his instructions. The sugar, corn syrup, water and egg whites had to be measured to the tape mark on George's glass jar. I imagined that precious glass jar falling off the shelf and George's recipes lost forever.
We mixed the divinity ingredients in the copper kettle and then it was time for Suzie Q, the big, old mixer. We added egg whites, filled them to the tape mark and whipped them until they peaked. Next we waited for the syrup to reach molten lava stage.
The little book said, "Take it off the fire and put it on the barrel." What? George had an old wooden barrel he would set the kettle on while the syrup cooled enough to add the whipped egg whites.
We changed the whip attachment to a paddle, put Suzie Q on low, slowly drizzled the syrup, then added vanilla and a dash of salt. The trick is in the beating. There will come a point when the mixture sets like fudge. If you miss it, you will beat all the fluffiness out of the divinity. We looked really close to see that moment and then added a fresh crop of pecans from The Nuthouse.
I was so lucky to have those times with the Three Georges family. I felt like I really became a part of them. Visit our store today at 226 Dauphin in Mobile, Alabama (251.433.6725). Like us on Facebook to receive discount coupons. We're celebrating our 95th Anniversary! Taste our divinity, made the same way George did, way back when.