Fudge. Just saying it makes me smile. Thinking about this thick, sweet confection makes my mouth water. Fudge brings back wonderful childhood memories of summers on the beach in New Jersey, wandering into every sweets shop I came across and marvelling at all of the varieties of salt water taffy and fudge. There was of course the standard chocolate fudge and it’s partner in crime, the chocolate-walnut version. Then there was the peanut butter, the marble, the peppermint, the rum-raisin, and the maple (plus all of the half-and-half fudge slabs that give you two flavors with each bite). We’d often load up one of their little paper boxes with 3 or 4 flavors, slicing off thin slivers at a time to make the pleasure (and the sugar rush) last longer. This time, say it with me: Fudge. What thoughts and memories come to mind? Leave your story in the comments below.
This is an excellent fudge recipe, because of the perfect texture. I’ve tried other fudge formulations and they frequently result in a grainy texture. Half of the joyful experience of eating fudge is the texture, so no compromising here. The secret to the silky texture is using sweetened condensed milk instead of a granular sweetener, like white sugar. If you’re not nuts for nuts (couldn’t help myself there), you can remove the walnuts from this recipe and sub in dried fruit, candied ginger, or even crumbled up mints (York, Andes, or After Eight mints will all do the trick). Don’t omit the mix-ins altogether, the fudge will not have the optimal texture.
The fastest fudge in the west. Appropriately called 15-minute fudge, this recipe is both fast and reliable. Use the best quality chocolate you can find for the optimal texture. Also, the walnuts are essential to the proper texture.
- 1 lb (450 g) semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
- 2 oz (57 g) unsweetened chocolate, finely chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 2 cups walnuts, coarsely chopped
- Cut a 12-inch length of extra-wide heavy-duty aluminum foil, and fold the edges back to form a 7.5-inch width. With the folded sides facing down, fit the foil securely into the bottom and up the sides of an 8-inch square baking pan, allowing the excess to overhang the sides of the pan. Grease the foil with a neutral vegetable oil (or vegetable oil spray).
- Combine the chocolates, the baking soda, and the salt in a medium heatproof bowl until the baking soda is evenly distributed.
- Stir in the sweetened condensed milk and the vanilla.
- Set the bowl over a large saucepan containing 2-inches of simmering water, making sure the bottom of the upper bowl does NOT contact the simmering water.
- Stir the mixture with a rubber spatula until the chocolate is almost fully melted and a few small pieces remain, about 2 to 4 minutes. Make sure to remove the fudge before the chocolate is fully melted or you could end up with a greasy result.
- Remove from the heat and continue to stir until the chocolate is fully melted and the mixture is smooth, about 2 minutes.
- Stir in the walnuts.
- Transfer the fudge to the prepared pan and spread it into an even layer with a spatula.
- Refrigerate until set, about 2 hours.
- Remove the fudge from the pan using the foil sling and cut it into squares.
Store the fudge, tightly wrapped in plastic, in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks or in the freezer for up to 3 months. If frozen, allow ample time to let the fudge reach room temperature before cutting it into pieces.
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Recipe from Cook's Country.