Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Fudge Fudge Fudge

I decided to whip up some fudge to give out as spot prizes at a recent event I was running.  So I looked all over for some quick and easy recipes for fudge that also looked like they would be great tasting with smooth results and I found these. 

Now fudge is of course a great thing to have under your belt, especially at holiday time, when you can also make it up and package it as gifts for friends or work colleagues.

One little trick when making fudge, to make it super easy to cut into pieces, is to always line your pan with wax paper and leave an inch or two over hanging from the sides.  That way you can easily lift out the fudge and cut it on a chopping board rather then trying to cut it in the tray and then jimmying it out with a knife and ending up with a mess.

I also suggest using a little cooking spray on your paper lining for that extra peace of mind for removal of the paper from the fudge! So for clarification sake please assume you should prepare your pans this way for the following recipes.

Also if its a little tricky or sticky use a knife which has been run under hot water for slicing, it will give nice clean lines.

Now I make no apologies for the fact that the following recipes can be called 'cheats' fudge.

Fudge where you have to boil sugar, use thermometers and then beat furiously for specific times until your arms about fall off... quite frankly do my head in!

Why take something as fun as fudge and turn it into a chore... Well no more! These are super easy you can even do them with the kids.

The first recipe is courtesy of Jo Cooks

Nutella Fudge with Pistachios
1 tin condensed milk (395 ml)
227 grams dark chocolate - broken up
42.5 grams butter - cubed
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
1 C nutella (Hazelnut/chocolate spread)
3/4 cup pistachios - shelled and whole
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sea salt for sprinkling on top

Prepare a 8x8 inch pan
In steel bowl over a pot of hot water (Ban-Marie style) melt together the condensed milk, chocolate, butter, vanilla, nutella and the first 1/2 teaspoon of salt.
This will take about 5 minutes, stir frequently, you don't want it to stick or burn so keep an eye on the temperature.
Eventually the nutella will melt and the whole lot will become smooth and glossy.
Take the bowl off the pot and off the heat* ( I pop a folded up dish towel or place-mat on the table to set it on in advance) then add the pistachios stir a little then pour into the prepared pan help spread into corners if needed.
Sprinkle over the 2nd amount of salt.  I was able to do this easily because we use rough sea salt in our grinder so I just ground it right on top.
Then set in fridge at least 2 hours till firm.
Cut with warm knife and serve.

This one was surprisingly not as sweet as it may seem, especially with the nutella, but it was very rich!

*TIP when taking the bowl off the heat take it off the pot - don't just take the pot off the element - because then you will create a vacuum the minute the water stops simmering and this makes a seal and then you cant get the bowl off the pot! I had to re heat the whole lot just to get the bowl off the pot - Doh!! Yes, feel free to laugh at my blonde moment.

Cookies and Cream Fudge
575 grams white chocolate - broken in chunks
397 gram tin of condensed milk
1 pkt Oreos broken up

Prepare a 9x9 inch pan
Simply pop your condensed milk and white chocolate into a bowl over a pot of water and heat gently
Stir occasionally until its all melted and amalgamated
Take off the heat , add in the Oreos and stir gently

Pour into your prepared pan.
This mix is a little thick so you may need to give it a hand into the corners.
Pop into the fridge for 2 hours or over night to set
Cut into squares and serve

This particular fudge well and again was able to be sliced into nice clean squares, which looked great.

I also made a batch replacing the white chocolate with Dark chocolate and replacing the Oreos with chopped up dried apricots, and a sprinkle of coconut on the top, which worked just as well.  I love it when you can find a basic recipe which you can play with to suit what flavours you may be after.

Until next time ... Happy Home Baking!

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