For years, I got invited to my cousin Carol’s house for Christmas dinner. Her only request was that I bring my homemade fudge. Although I used the Fantasy Fudge recipe on the back of the Kraft Marshmallow Creme jar, she said that nobody could make it like I do. (When I make fudge, I’m old-school and use the soft ball method of determining when the substance has cooked long enough to harden properly when cooled.)
Fudge lends itself to experimentation when it comes to flavors. Blending favorites or even a moment of inspiration will create a new delicious kind of fudge. Adding bits of candy, nuts or sprinkles can bring just the right celebratory burst of excitement to an old favorite.
In the late 19th century, some shops on Mackinac Island, Michigan, began to produce similar products as the Vassar College fudge and sold it to summer vacationers. Fudge is still made in some of the original shops located on the famous island.
Three other fudge holidays entice us to celebration, too. Check out May 12th to celebrate all those nutty fudges. July 22nd marks Penuche Fudge Day. Finally, on November 20th Peanut Butter Fudge Day is celebrated.
Fantasy Fudge Recipe
3 cups of sugar
3/4 cup of butter
1-small can (5 oz) of evaporated milk
Mix together in a pan, keep stirring so the mixture does not stick or burn. (I use a wooden spoon to stir the mixture). Cook for at least 5 minutes after the mixture comes to a complete, rolling boil.
Soft-ball stage refers to a specific temperature range when cooking sugar syrups, occurring between 235 and 245 F. In addition to using a candy thermometer, this stage can be determined by dropping a spoonful of hot syrup into a bowl of very cold water.
After the mixture reaches the softball stage, add the following:
1 12oz bag of semi-sweet chocolate morsels
1-7 oz jar of marshmallow creme
1 tablespoon of vanilla
Stir in one 12-oz bag of semi-sweet chocolate morsels (you can use peanut butter morsels or butterscotch morsels is you prefer that flavor of fudge.)
Once the chocolate is thoroughly melted, add 1-7oz jar of marshmallow creme. Continue stirring constantly because the marshmallow creme will take longer to blend into the easily melted chocolate.
Add the vanilla. (Sometimes instead of adding vanilla, I will add Gran Marnier to give the chocolate a lovely orange overtone.)
Add ground pecans or walnuts if desired.
When everything is thoroughly mixed, pour into a buttered pan and let sit until hard.
If your conscience permits, lick the bowl and spoon before washing them out.