I have it in my head that I like fudge. I mean, shouldn’t I like fudge? So when we are traveling and I see a fudge shop, we usually pop in and buy a little slab or two. I’m inevitably disappointed. All the fudge I’ve tasted is grainy, overly sweet, and has the texture of aged wallpaper paste. I think I’ve finally figured out that I don’t like fudge, I like my mom’s fudge. And so does she. I once called her and she told me that she was having a pan for dinner. She was kidding, of course, about the whole pan thing. But it’s good enough to eat the whole pan. And once I’ve made it, I have to practice serious restraint. The funny thing about this fudge is that it really shouldn’t be this good. It’s made with Nestle chocolate chips, not a particularly delicious chocolate, but it comes together with the sugar and milk and butter and vanilla and it’s pretty incredible. And it takes only about ten minutes to make.
Music for making fudge
One of my mom’s favorites, and mine, too: Johnny Mathis’ Christmas Eve with Johnny Mathis
I think the flavor of this fudge is greatly improved by buying fresh walnuts and toasting them in the oven for a few minutes. Place them on a baking sheet in a 350 degree oven for about 10 minutes until they are fragrant and toasted.
Use a very large pan when you make this. It boils up.
Carnation evaporated milk used to be sold in a 13-ounce can. Buy a 12-ounce can and a little five-ounce can, and measure 2 ½ T. from the little one to make up the extra ounce.
When you pour the fudge out of the pan and onto a baking sheet do not scrape out the pan with a spatula or spoon. This will cause the fudge be become grainy. You can eat the remaining fudge in the pan with a spoon if you don’t want it to go to waste. It’s kind of fun to have the pan to yourself, too.
Work quickly to spread the fudge to the edges of the pan. If you overwork it it will become grainy and lose its smooth appearance.
To cut the fudge into servings, run a knife around the edge of your pan and lift the entire sheet with its parchment liner onto a large cutting board. Trim the rough edges and slice the fudge into squares.
This recipe is part of the Cookie Baking and Candy Making Plan for Christmas 2010 (here).
Chocolate Fudge with Walnuts
Yield: about 50 2″ pieces
4 ½ c. sugar
13 ounces Carnation evaporated milk
½ unsalted butter (2 sticks), cut into tablespoons
1 T. vanilla extract
18 ounces Nestle chocolate chips
2 c. fresh walnuts, toasted on a sheet pan in the oven for 10 minutes at 350 degrees F
- Butter a standard half sheet pan or jelly roll pan and line it with parchment. Butter the parchment.
- In a very large pan over low heat stir together the sugar and evaporated milk until they are silky smooth.
- Bring to a boil over low heat and boil for six minutes.
- Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the vanilla, butter, and chocolate chips.
- Stir until well combined and glossy.
- Pour immediately into the sheet pan or jelly roll pan and smooth it quickly with a wooden spoon. Do not overwork the fudge or it will lose its smooth appearance.
- Refrigerate until set.
- Cut into squares and store in the refrigerator.
Tips for storage here.