|Heart attack in a bowl|
If they really wanted to please me, they should bring the tooth-rottingly sweet Scottish tablet. I adore that stuff. My teeth and my blood sugar don't.
To really make fudge though, you need a sugar thermometer. It saves all the faff of trying to work out just when the sugar reaches soft ball stage by dropping blobs of hot fudge into cups of cold water. However, it's essential to buy a decent one. I bought my first (and only so far) from eBay. I picked a good vendor with high ratings. I read reviews on other websites about the thermometer I chose - it was a glass thermometer inside a protective glass tube. I used it to make my very first batch of jam - it worked perfectly and I had no need for the wrinkle test. I decided to make Baileys fudge for a gift and the darn thing shattered into my pan of beautiful fudge.
What a waste of good ingredients. I did think about trying to sieve the bits out but thought I'd be faced with a lawsuit.
|The finished fudge|
But this recipe appealed because even though it's more of a truffle-style fudge than a true fudge, there's no need to heat it precisely. You just stick all of the ingredients over a bain marie, mix til melted and refrigerate. Simples.
It really is as easy as that. It helps if your toddler doesn't decide to wake up and scream the house down just as you're pouring the fudge into the tin so mine was a little rustic looking. It also definitely needs the salt to cut through the sweetness. Because my expensive Next salt mill broke a while back (Next household gadgets are rubbish - our kettle and toaster broke and the colour has come off of our bread bin) the only sea salt I had was in one of those shop-bought mills where you can't take the lid off to refill it so I had to grind it to get it out. The salt was finer than I would've liked so it looked a little snowy on the top, but it was definitely needed.
I was also pleased that the delicate nutty flavour came through in the aftertaste. I actually used Sainsburys own Belgian hazelnut spread which I've found doesn't have that nasty plasticky taste that Ferrero hazlenut and cocoa products have.
It makes a fair few pieces. I didn't count but at least 64 if you cut it into inch squares. Just be wary of oversampling!
- 1 tbsp butter for greasing
- 1 can (375g) sweetened condenced milk
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 200g high quality chocolate, chopped into small pieces
- 300g Nutella at room temperature (although I prefer Sainsburys Belgian Chocolate and Hazlenut Spread)
- 3 tbsp softened unsalted butter cut into cubes
- ½ tsp sea salt
- Grease the bottom and sides of an 20cm square tin with butter. Line the pan with parchment paper, leaving a 2-inch overlap on the sides.
- In a medium glass or stainless steel bowl, stir together sweetened condensed milk, vanilla, bittersweet chocolate chips, Nutella, and butter.
- Form a double-boiler by setting the bowl over a medium pot of gently simmering water. The water level should be low enough that the bottom of the bowl does not touch the water. Stir until the chocolate chips are melted and the mixture is smooth, 5 to 7 minutes.
- Scrape the mixture into the prepared pan, spread the top smooth with a spatula, and sprinkle with sea salt. Refrigerate until the fudge is firm, at least 2 hours.
- Once the fudge is chilled, run a knife under hot water, dry it off, and run it around the edges of the pan to loosen the fudge. Using the overhanging parchment paper, lift the fudge out. Peel off the parchment paper. Cut the fudge into 3/4-inch squares. Store in the fridge in an airtight container or wrapped well in plastic wrap and foil.