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Mooncake Filling: Maine Needham

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Based on Maine’s famous Needham candy. A russet baking potato works best, still warm from the oven. Use a large potato. Remember it will weigh less once baked and peeled than when uncooked.

Active Time: 15 minutes

Yield: 12 mooncakes (~25g filling each)

Total Time: 2 hour 15m


  • 1 cup baked, peeled potato | 4.5 oz | 129g

  • 2 cups + 2 tablespoons powdered sugar | 9 oz | 257g

  • 1 cup unsweetened, shredded coconut | 4.5 oz | 129g

  • 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder | 0.1 oz | 4g

  • ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract

  • ⅛ teaspoon salt


  1. Preheat your oven to 400°F. Prick a large potato with a fork a number of times, then bake it for about 45 minutes or until you can easily pierce it with a fork. If you have an instant read thermometer, the center should be 205°F. Allow the potato to cool for 10-15 minutes.
  2. While the potato is cooling, you can weigh out your other ingredients.
  3. Cut the potato in half, and scoop out the inside. You don’t need the skin. Add the potato to a medium mixing bowl. Mash the baked and peeled potato. Do not add milk/cream or butter to make traditional mashed potatoes. You just need plain potato, mashed. If you prepared your potato in advance, reheat it in the microwave so it’s warm.
  4. Add a cup of the powdered sugar and stir to fully incorporate the sugar. When the sugar is fully incorporated, repeat with the remaining sugar. The mixture will become very wet and runny. That’s OK!
  5. Add the coconut, vanilla extract, and salt. Mix util everything is fully incorporated. The coconut will thicken up the mixture. It will set more fully once cooled in the refrigerator.
  6. Divide the mixture into two batches by transferring 60g into a small bowl. To the small bowl, add the cocoa powder and stir it in.
  7. Cover and refrigerate both bowls for 45 minutes or until cooled and the mixture has set. 
  8. Lightly oil your hands, and form 12 equal sized balls of the vanilla filling, 20 grams each. Set aside.
  9. Form 12 equal sized balls of the chocolate filling, 5 grams each. Set aside.
  10. To each of the vanilla balls, gently press your thumb into the ball forming a cup. Place a chocolate ball into the depression, and then enclose it, forming a chocolate filled vanilla ball.
  11. Assemble the mooncakes.

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