Mr. friend Jane sent me some fudge recipes which got me started on a trip down memory lane.
When I was a teenager, my friend Linda and I would get together on rainy afternoons when her mother was away to make fudge. We would, of course, eat the entire recipe and I’d go home sick as a dog. My parents finally had to make me stop going to her house – thought it might contain high levels of carbon monoxide or something.
One afternoon our boyfriends were coming over and we decided to make a batch and lace it with Elmer’s Glue. They gobbled it up and never said a word. We laughed wildly after they left and proceeded to make another batch (minus the Elmers) to eat.
A few days later, both our boyfriends broke up with us. The moral of the story: making Elmer’s fudge for a man can turn into a sticky situation.
American culinary folklore has it that fudge was invented in the United States more than 100 years ago. The exact origin is disputed, but most stories claim that the first batch of fudge resulted from a bungled (“fudged”) batch of caramels made on February 14, 1886—hence the name “fudge.”
One of the first documentations of fudge is found in a letter written by Laura Elizabeth Simmonds, an ex-student at Malmesbury School in Malmesbury, Wiltshire. She wrote that her schoolmate’s cousin made fudge in Baltimore, Maryland in 1886 and sold it for 40 cents a pound. Miss Hartridge got hold of the fudge recipe, and in 1888, made 30 pounds of this delicious fudge for the Vassar College Senior Auction. This Vassar fudge recipe became quite popular at the school for years to come.
“Mackinac Island and other tourist towns in Northern Michigan are famed for making slab fudge. Slab fudge, typically sold in 0.5 lb (0.23 kg) slices, is made by pouring liquid ingredients onto large marble slabs for hand working. Boxes of fudge are one of the island’s primary souvenirs, and about 10,000 lb (4,500 kg) of the confection are sold every day. The tourists there are referred to as “fudgies”. Mackinac Island holds a “Fudge Festival” on the fourth week of August.
In case all this “fudge talk” is making you long for a bite. Here’s a super easy and fast way to satisfy your sweet tooth. In fact, I think I’ll bake up some for giving during the upcoming holiday season.
2 Minute Microwave Fudge
1 pound of powdered sugar
1/2 cup cocoa
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup milk
1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
1/4 pound butter/margarine
1 cup chopped nuts
Mix all dry ingredients together in a 8×8 inch microwave safe pan (important to use this size pan). Add milk (or Elmer’s Glue if you want to get rid of someone) and vanilla extract. Place chunk of butter/margarine in center ( leave butter as whole do not chop up). Microwave on high for 2 minutes until bottom of dish feels warm. Stir vigorously and blend in chopped nuts. Put in mold or whatever and chill for 1 hour. * Use real butter for best results.
The problem with a lot of fudge recipes is the need for cooking on the stove and using a candy thermometer. This is so easy you can have the kids help you make it.
SERVES 10 -15 normal people. Only two or three chocolate addicts.
Here’s my favorite microwave recipe – the only downside is that it must chill for 30 minutes. I’ll probably opt for the above recipe from now on.
Emily’s Microwave Fudge
- 1 (1 lb) box powdered sugar
- 1/2 cup butter
- 1/2 cup cocoa powder
- 1/4 cup milk
- 1/8 teaspoon salt (optional)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla