Mrs. D's Chocolate Peanut Fudge
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Fudge is one of those childhood treats that reserves a special place in the heart of many chocoholics. And Mom's home-made fudge is the best of all. This recipe calls for peanuts, but you can use any favorite nut, or a combination of nuts.
By Marcel Desaulniers
Death by Chocolate: The Last Word on a Consuming Passion | Marcel Desaulniers | Random House,1992
“Temperature to time ratio is very important in this recipe. If the fudge mixture takes too long to reach the desired temperature, the liquid in the milk will evaporate, resulting in a grainy-textured fudge. If the cooking temperature is too high, evaporation will take place and once again you get a grainy textured fudge. . .The key factor is the time (22-25 minutes) to reach the desired temperature. . .You can use any unsalted peanuts, or, for that matter, use walnuts, hazelnuts, cashews, or pecans. You can even go crazy and make a mixed-nut chocolate fudge. The fudge may be stored in a sealed container at room temperature for several days. It will actually keep substantially longer; however, the fudge will get quite hard after a couple of weeks." – Marcel Desaulniers
Yield: 1.5 lbs.
7 oz. unsalted shelled peanuts
3 tbsps.plus 1/2 tsp. unsalted butter
l lb.caster sugar*
8 oz. milk
2 oz. cocoa powder
Pinch of salt
1 tsp. pure vanilla essence
Preheat the oven to 325°F (170°C).
Toast the peanuts on a baking sheet in the preheated oven until golden brown, about 6 to 7 minutes. Remove the peanuts from the oven and set aside until needed.
Lightly coat the insides of a 9- by 9- by 2-inch square cake tin with 1/2 tsp. butter.
Heat the sugar, milk, cocoa powder, and salt in a 2-quart saucepan over medium heat. Stir until the mixture is smooth and the sugar is dissolved. Bring to a boil, then adjust heat to medium-low and allow the mixture to cook until it reaches a temperature of 245°F, about 22 to 25 minutes. Use a rubber spatula to scrape down the saucepan every 5 to 6 minutes.
Remove the pan from the heat. Vigorously stir in the butter and the vanilla. Fold in the peanuts and pour into the prepared cake tin. Allow to cool to room temperature, about 45 minutes. Cut into the desired size and serve.
*Caster sugar is granulated sugar with a very fine grain. It's also known as berry sugar or super-fine sugar. It is not icing sugar. If you can't find caster sugar, just whirl regular granulated sugar in a processor for a few minutes.
Death by Chocolate © 1992 Marcel Desaulniers.| ©Photo, Random House. All rights reserved.
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