Taffy is a slang term for a native of the country of Wales.

It's origin is from the Welsh pronounciation of David, which is spelled in Welsh Dafyd, who is the patron saint of Wales. Another probable source for the term is the word Taffia, meaning beloved in Celtic.

Thanks to BlueDragon

Not exactly non-offensive. Calling a Welshman Taffy in a crowded Cardiff pub is very likely to earn you a punch on the nose. As with Jock for Scottish or Mick for Irish its use these days would generally be frowned upon.

Immortalised however in the famous piece of doggerel which exists in a variety of versions, commemorating the Welsh cross border raids of centuries past;

Taffy was a welshman, Taffy was a thief
Taffy came to my house and stole a piece of beef
I went to Taffy's house, Taffy was not at home
Taffy came to my house and stole a marrowbone
I went to Taffy's house, Taffy wasn't in
Taffy came to my house and stole a silver pin
I went to Taffy's house, Taffy was in bed
I took up a poker and flung it at his head

I failed at making taffy the first three times I tried, but it is worth it in the end. It is a good idea to keep your cooking space clean with this one so that you can repeat it if you fail. Kids will love this, the pulling of taffy is a great afternoon project.

There are recipes that call for more sugar and less syrup, but the corn syrup is vital. This goes back to the crystal structure bit, the corn syrup serves as a form. This is also not salt water taffy, the two have many differences that start with taste.

Combine vinegar, syrup, and sugar. Bring to a boil without stirring. Cook to between 250 and 252 (Just beyond firm ball and in the early hard ball stage). Pour into the pan and let it sit until it's cool enough to handle (doesn't have to be cold).

Add a small amount of your flavoring and coloring at this point.

Take a handful of the taffy and pull it out into a thread, double it up and pull it again. When you have pulled it enough it'll be opaque and white (if you colored it it'll be that color). You can test it, just pull off a bit. At the desired consistency use clean scissors to cut off inch lengths, wrap them in wax paper.


i.e. Davy. A general name for a Welchman, St. David being the tutelar saint of Wales.

Taffy's day ; the first of March, St. David's day.

The 1811 Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue.

Taf"fy (?), n. [Prov. E. taffy toffy.]


A kind of candy made of molasses or brown sugar boiled down and poured out in shallow pans.

[Written also, in England, toffy.]


Flattery; soft phrases.



© Webster 1913.

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