Microwave Carob Fudge #SundaySupper

Microwave Carob Fudge

The holidays are always a whirlwind. It’s already November, and I’ve got less than a month to get ready for Thanksgiving and less than two to prepare for Christmas. Sure, that sounds like a lot of time, but I know most of you know the typical holiday time warp.

You know, you blink and suddenly it’s the day before Thanksgiving. If you’re anything like me, you realize you’re out of a few necessary ingredients for baking and cooking. And then I’m busy baking and cooking before I scramble to check out all my favorite websites to grab some good deals before they’re all gone.

Microwave Carob Fudge

And then it will be Christmas in a flash. I’ll be scrambling to wrap presents, send cards, and of course make a lots of yummy goodies.

I love giving my friends homemade treats, but this time of year, I don’t always have time to make recipes with twenty steps and a bunch of specialty ingredients that require me to go to five different stores to find. Easy recipes that taste just as good as if they took me all day to make are my go to in the holiday season.

Microwave Carob Fudge

Enter Microwave Carob Fudge. I’ve already made awesome peanut butter and almond butter fudge recipes in the microwave, but this carob version is my new favorite. As always, feel free to use dark chocolate if you aren’t allergic like me. I wouldn’t use anything sweeter or the fudge will be way too sweet.

This took me less than twenty minutes to whip up. It does have to chill for awhile, but then it’s time to slice and package it. It slices just like all the fancy fudge I’ve seen up in Frankenmuth, about an hour from where I live in Michigan. It’s a fun little town to walk around, and watching them make fudge is so cool. To be able to make something at home that is just as wonderful is awesome and helps me remember my fun trips there.

This treat also happens to be gluten free and nut free, so it’s pretty welcoming to all people who suffer from allergies, making it the perfect gift. I already know I’ll be making a few more batches of this fudge, and you should whip up a couple as well.

Microwave Carob Fudge

Microwave Carob Fudge #SundaySupper

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 2 minutes

Total Time: 12 minutes

Yield: 36 pieces

Ingredients

1 stick unsalted butter

¼ cup milk (I used almond, use what you love)

1 cup carob or dark chocolate chips

1 box, about 3 ¾ cup, confectioners’ sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste

Instructions

Line an 8 inch square pan with parchment, set aside.

Place butter, milk, and carob or chocolate chips in a large microwave safe bowl. Microwave in 30 second increments, stirring in between, until fully melted.

Add confectioners’ sugar and vanilla and whisk until a cohesive mixture is formed and there are no lumps. Pour into the prepared pan. Refrigerate for about 4 hours until firm.

Cut into pieces and serve or package to give as gifts. Fudge may be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks.

Notes

Recipe adapted from Land O'Lakes Additional chilling time is necessary

http://piesandplots.net/microwave-carob-fudge-sundaysupper/

Don’t forget to check out the other Sunday Supper dishes!

Beverages

Appetizers

Main and Side Dishes

Desserts and Baked Goods

Sunday Supper MovementJoin the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm ET. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. To get more great Sunday Supper Recipes, visit our website or check out our Pinterest board.

Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.

 

Penuche Fudge #SundaySupper

Penuche Fudge

Candy, candy canes, candy corns, and syrup.  Those are Buddy the Elf’s favorite food groups.  I have to admit, they sound pretty good to me.  Who needs a balanced diet?  I often joke sugar is at the bottom of my food pyramid, but in all seriousness I love both healthy foods and sweet treats.  It’s all about balance and moderation.

With all the sugary goodness, it’s no wonder Elf is one of my favorite holiday movies.  It’s just not Christmas without Elf, A Charlie Brown Christmas, and Love Actually.  What makes Elf so great is that it’s funny . . . no . . . hilarious, while still being moving and heartfelt.  So many Christmas movies are rather depressing, but not Elf.  Maybe one day there’ll be an Elf 2!

Penuche Fudge

Penuche Fudge

Just a few weeks ago, I was lucky enough to see Elf the Musical.  It wasn’t quite as good as the movie, but it was still a fun night out and a good show.  Like the movie, it was funny and uplifting.  The original songs were all quite catchy, and they actors were so talented!  I don’t know how they perform eight shows a week.  One would be tough for me.  My arms got tired mixing blondie dough the other day!

While my four main food groups may not be the same as Buddy’s, we both share a deep love of sweets.  I know Buddy would devour this Penuche Fudge.  It’s a rich, brown sugar candy that’s perfect for the holidays.  There’s enough to share and give as gifts.  Plus, it’s gluten free!  It has a slightly grainy texture when you first bite into it that quickly dissolves in your mouth into sweet goodness.  There is some complexity from the brown sugar, but this is a very sweet, rich dessert.  Just what I’m craving this time of year as I sit down for another viewing of Elf!

Penuche Fudge

Penuche Fudge

Penuche Fudge #SundaySupper

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 35 minutes

Yield: 64 pieces

Ingredients

2 ½ cups packed light brown sugar

2 ½ cups granulated sugar

1 ¼ cups milk (I used almond milk, but any will work)

1 stick unsalted butter

½ teaspoon kosher salt

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Instructions

Line an 8 inch square pan with parchment paper, leaving overhang for easy removal later.

In a large saucepan, combine sugars, milk, butter, and salt. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until the mixture reaches 236 degrees F on a candy thermometer. This will take awhile and the mixture will bubble a lot during cooking. Be careful!

Once the mixture has reached 236, remove it from the heat and either pour it into the bowl of a stand mixer or a heatproof bowl and beat it with a hand mixer. Either way, increase the speed slowly until it is on medium-high. Beat until the mixture has thickened and lightened in color, 5-10 minutes. Add vanilla extract and beat for 1 additional minute.

Spread mixture into prepared pan and smooth the top. Refrigerate at least 2 hours before cutting into squares. Fudge may be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 week.

Notes

Fudge needs an additional two hours to set in the refrigerator!

Recipe adapted from Food Babbles

http://piesandplots.net/penuche-fudge-sundaysupper/

Don’t forget to check out the other Sunday Supper dishes!

Party Appetizers & Snacks:

Oven-Roasted Applesauce Scented with Rosemary & Vanilla-Inspired by the song
“Christmas in the Trenches”Shockingly Delicious
Roasted Chestnuts Inspired by the movie “The Christmas Song”Food Lust People Love
A Popcorn Trio
Inspired by the song “Let it Snow” Hot Momma’s Kitchen Chaos
Chai Tea Abominable Snow Buddies Inspired by the movie “Rudolph”Cupcakes & Kale Chips
Raisin Bran Muffins for a Crowd Inspired by the movie
“National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation” In The Kitchen With Audrey and Maurene
Icicle Candy and Reindeer Snacks Inspired by the movie “Snow”Treats & Trinkets
A Christmas Carol Plum Pudding Inspired by the movie “A Christmas Carol”No One Likes Crumbley Cookies
Yukon Mashed Potato Cakes Inspired by the movie “Rudolph” Cookin’ Mimi
Christmas Pudding Inspired by the song “Over the River and Through the Woods” A Kitchen Hoor
Pumpkin Pudding Inspired by the movie “Nightmare Before Christmas” Basic N Delicious
Elf-Inspired Christmas “Grams”
Inspired by the movie “Elf” MarocMama
Sugarplums
Inspired by the movie “The Nutcracker”Happy Baking Days
Chai Spiced Roasted Nuts
Inspired by the song “Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire” – Take A Bite Out of Boca

Festive Main Dishes

Maple Syrup Spaghetti– Inspired by the movie “Elf”- Momma’s Meals
Who Hash Inspired by the movie “How The Grinch Stole Christmas”girlichef
Ginger Orange Glazed Cornish Hens Inspired by the song “The 12 Days of Christmas”Sue’s Nutrition Buzz
NY Hot Dog with Sabrett-style Onion Sauce Inspired by the movie “Die Hard” Small Wallet, Big Appetite
Classic Caesar Salad Inspired by the movie “The Santa Clause”The Little Ferraro Kitchen
Individuals Meatloaves & Horseradish Mashed Potatoes for Mommy’s Little Piggies – Inspired by the movie
“A Christmas Story”The Not So Cheesy Kitchen
Christmas Waffles Inspired by the TV special “A Claymation Christmas Celebration”Curious Cuisiniere
Filthy Animal Pizza
Inspired by the movie “Home Alone”Foxes Love Lemons
Chicken Orzo Soup
Inspired by the song “12 Days of Christmas” Family Foodie
Brandied Candied Sweet Potatoes
Inspired by the song “Christmas Is The Time To Say ‘I Love You’ ” –
Cindy’s Recipes and Writings

Sweet Holiday Treats:

Gin and Tonic Cupcakes Inspired by Adam Sandler’s ” The Chanukah Song” The Girl In The Little Red Kitchen
Chocolate Chip Shortbread Bars Inspired by the movie “Love Actually”Magnolia Days
Gingerbread Marshmallows Inspired by the song “Marshmallow World”Jane’s Adventures in Dinner
Hazelnut Chocolate Chip Cookies Inspired by the movie “The Gremlins”Killer Bunnies, Inc
White Chocolate Peppermint Fudge Inspired by the song “I’m Dreaming of a White Christmas”Alida’s Kitchen
Snowball Cookies – Inspired by the movie “White Christmas”The Foodie Army Wife
Penuche Fudge
Inspired by the movie “Elf” Pies and Plots
Hot Chocolate Cookies
Inspired by the movie “Santa Clause” Mess Makes Food
South Pacific Coconut Tres Leche Cake
Inspired by the movie “South Pacific”The Ninja Baker
Cookies & Cream Fudge
Inspired by the movie “Elf”The Messy Baker

Cozy Drinks:

Toasted Coconut Hot Cocoa Inspired by the song “Let It Snow”Chocolate Moosey
The Christmas Gram Inspired by the movie “Elf”An Appealing Plan
Eggnog Hot Chocolate Inspired by the movie “National Lampoons Christmas Vacation” Peanut Butter and Peppers
Vermont Hot Cocoa
Inspired by the movie “White Christmas”Kudos Kitchen By Renee
Spiked Hot Chocolate Peppermint Ice Cream Floats
Inspired by the song “Holly Jolly Christmas “NeighborFood

This is Christmas; Wine Pairings for Holiday Themed#SundaySupper RecipesENOFYLZ Wine Blog

Sunday Supper Movement
Join the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm ET. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. Check out our #SundaySupper Pinterest board for more fabulous recipes and food photos.

Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy! You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.

Easy Almond Butter Fudge

Easy Almond Butter Fudge

The holidays can be a bit of a mixed bag of emotions.  So much of the season is wonderful.  We very often see friends and family, spending time with the people we love most.  We’ll forget about the tension that sometimes arises, and the issues that can come from all of the traveling.  That feeling of togetherness makes the season really special.

I love buying presents for people.  It’s so fun selecting the perfect gifts, mostly for Mom and Dad.  The look on their faces when the wrapping has been torn away and the perfect something or other is revealed is a special moment.  It brings me such joy.  I have to admit I rather like receiving presents too.  But really, who doesn’t?  We all turn into kids on Christmas morning.

Easy Almond Butter Fudge

The decorations are so beautiful.  All of the trees and the village set up in our house.  The singing snowmen and women animated decorations from Hallmark and a staircase full of stuffed animals.  It’s safe to say our house has been turned into a winter wonderland.  All those decorations make me happy, but at the same time a little nostalgic or even sad.

I wish I could remember the story behind every decoration.  Ornaments that were purchased at all kinds of fun events.  Stuffed animals that comforted me on sleepless nights.  Nicknacks that were ordered on a whim watching QVC on a quiet day at home with Mom.  A stocking that reminds me of the cat we once had.  Many gifts from my Granny who would love to see the decorations one more time, I know.  Dad bought cheesy singing mice stuffed animals knowing I’d love them.  And I do.  I love all of these things and I often cry thinking of those fond memories, wishing sometimes I could go back to those moments instead of growing up and everything changing.

Easy Almond Butter Fudge

The holidays also remind me of the people who have passed.  I find myself missing them more this time of year than any other.  I especially miss Granny, wishing for just one more Christmas with her.  And don’t get me started on Christmas music.  One note of “Holy Night” and I’m lost in a sea of tears.  Plus, here in Michigan the weather is also freezing cold and gloomy.  Day after day of clouds can get anyone a little down.

I’m not saying I don’t like the holidays.  In fact, I love them.  I just think it can be a difficult time of year.  What are your favorite and least favorite things about the holidays?  Do you think they can be sad?

Easy Almond Butter Fudge

Baking is a great thing about the holidays.  Or in this case no baking.  This Easy Almond Butter Fudge is crazy easy to make.  It has only four ingredients, is made in the microwave, happens to be gluten free, and is rich and creamy.  The almond flavor comes through with a hint of vanilla.  This will become your new favorite candy and is perfect to serve at a party or give as a gift.  You’ll be making this year round!

If you love almond butter as much as I do, please check out this video Mom and I made demonstrating how to make Almond Butter Cookies 🙂 They are also very easy to make and gluten free. It would really make my day if you’d take a look!

 Easy Almond Butter Fudge

Easy Almond Butter Fudge

Prep Time: PT10 M

Cook Time: 2 minutes

Total Time: 12 minutes

Yield: 64 pieces

Ingredients

2 sticks unsalted butter

1 cup almond butter (I like Justin’s Maple Almond)

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

1 1 pound box confectioners’ sugar

Instructions

Line an 8 inch square pan with parchment paper.

In a medium microwave safe bowl, place butter and almond butter. Cover with a paper plate and microwave on high for two minutes. Remove from the microwave and stir. Microwave for an additional two minutes.

Carefully remove from the microwave, as the mixture will be incredibly hot. Stir in vanilla. Add the confectioners’ sugar and stir until the mixture is thick and no longer glossy, about five minutes. The mixture may look like it is separating. That is okay.

Pour the mixture into the prepared pan. Dab any excess butter on the top. Cover with parchment paper and place in the refrigerator for 2-3 hours, until solidified and cold. Remove the fudge from the refrigerator and cut into pieces. Fudge may be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 week.

http://piesandplots.net/easy-almond-butter-fudge/

WoCave Mission 3 + Peanut Butter Fudge

WoCave Mission 3 + Peanut Butter Fudge

Top row: Me, Dr. Baran, and Sara
Bottom row: Danielle, Marybeth, Kaitlyn, Alex, and Katie
There are many other ladies there too – but they were a little camera shy 🙂

I’m sorry to report I recently completed my final WoCavé mission.  It has been a blast figuring out what a WoCavé means to me this summer, and I think this third mission really clarified and solidified the concept for me.

This month’s mission was to throw a mocktail and dessert party for my girlfriends.  I thought about this mission for awhile.  Instead of asking my friends to drive across town in the middle of rush hour and their busy lives, I thought I’d bring the WoCavé to some of them.  Several of my friends work in my favorite medical office.  It started as a business relationship, but before long, we were going to fashion shows and out to eat together.

WoCave Mission 3 + Peanut Butter Fudge

WoCave Mission 3 + Peanut Butter Fudge

Two of the members of the all-female staff (remember, no guys allowed in the WoCavé!) recently had babies, so they are extra busy.  However, all of them work incredibly hard, keeping the office and their homes in order and making sure they spend lots of time with their families.  They are awesome ladies.  I love chatting with them, and they make going to a medical office loads of fun.  They are always so kind to me, so I wanted to pamper them.

I turned their break room into a WoCavé.  In order to help me, my mission box contained mocktail glasses, a mocktail recipe book, a mocktail shaker set, a Visa gift card, and it all came in this fantastic ottoman to help decorate my WoCavé.  I love that ottoman so much!  For treats I prepared Peach Granola Bars, Blackberry Pie Bars, and Peanut Butter Fudge.  I’ve made peanut butter fudge in the microwave before, but this version is even better and only a little harder to make.  It is creamy and will melt in your mouth; plus it has a punch of peanut butter flavor.  The ladies could not decide which was their favorite, though the Blackberry Pie Bars, with blackberries picked by Dad, were a huge hit.  I also made Faux-Sangria.  I cut up a few peaches and plums and added some blueberries and freshly squeezed orange juice.  The ladies filled their glasses with fruit, then topped it off with either sparkling cider or sparkling white grape juice.  It was the perfect refreshing celebration of summer.

WoCave Mission 3 + Peanut Butter Fudge

WoCave Mission 3 + Peanut Butter Fudge

These ladies loved their WoCavé break and they so deserved it.  I hope they know how much I like and appreciate them.  I also hope they, along with all of you, will keep WoCavés going in your world.  I know I will.  I think the biggest takeaway from this whole experience was that we all need a WoCavé in our lives and that it can be whatever we want it to be.  Everyone’s WoCavé will be a little different.  It’s all about what makes you happy and comfortable.

I am so grateful for my experience this summer not only as a blogger, but also as a woman.  I have learned and grown so much on both fronts and opened myself to new experiences.  I hope I have inspired you in some way too.  And maybe if I ask nicely, the Skinny Cow will send more of her sweet treats and WoCavé missions my way!

Disclaimer: I was compensated by Skinny Cow/Nestle for my time and participation, however, all opinions, as always, are my own.

WoCave Mission 3 + Peanut Butter Fudge

WoCave Mission 3 + Peanut Butter Fudge

WoCave Mission 3 + Peanut Butter Fudge

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Yield: 64 pieces

Ingredients

2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold, cubed

3 tablespoons light corn syrup

1 cup granulated sugar

¾ cup packed light brown sugar

¾ cup milk (I used almond)

Pinch baking soda

½ teaspoon kosher salt

6 tablespoons creamy peanut butter

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Instructions

Line an 8 inch square pan with parchment.

In a medium saucepan over medium heat, bring corn syrup, sugars, milk, baking soda, and salt to a boil, stirring frequently. Insert a candy thermometer. Continuing to stir frequently and boil, bring the mixture to 236 degrees F on the candy thermometer.

Once it reaches 236, remove it from the heat and stir in the butter. Stir until it is completely incorporated. Then add the peanut butter and vanilla and stir until they are fully incorporated. Carefully pour the mixture into the prepared pan. Place the fudge in a cool place to firm up. If you’re in a hurry, you can put it in the refrigerator.

Once the fudge is cool, remove it from the pan using the parchment and cut it into pieces. Fudge may be stored in an airtight container at room temperature or in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.

Notes

Recipe adapted from Martha Stewart Living, May 1998

http://piesandplots.net/wocave-mission-3-peanut-butter-fudge/

Peanut Mazapanes #SundaySupper

Peanut Mazapanes #SundaySupper

Spanish was always one of my favorite classes in school.  I started taking it in second grade and continued into college.  It always seemed so cool to be learning another language.  From learning colors and numbers in grade school to verb conjugation in middle, and writing one page papers in high school to a textbook without English in college, my love and fascination with the language only grew.

I didn’t mind practicing vocabulary with Mom, showing off my pronunciation skills.  I always wanted to start speaking Spanish in the middle of conversations.  “How are you?”  “Muy bien, gracias!”  But I refrained, knowing people already thought I was weird enough.

Peanut Mazapanes #SundaySupper

Peanut Mazapanes #SundaySupper

My Spanish teachers were some of my favorites too.  It was always easier to go to class and learn and retain information when I liked who was teaching it to me.  I still think back to some of my Spanish teachers and smile.  I can’t say that about much of my time in school.  A lot of my Spanish vocabulary has vanished with lack of use, and I never became fluent like I hoped, but I still love the language and remember some of it.

It’s funny, I remember Day of the Dead parties much more than Cinco de Mayo parties, but I’m sure we had them.  I like to imagine they involved chips and salsa, piñatas, and no homework.  Definitely no homework.

Peanut Mazapanes #SundaySupper

Peanut Mazapanes #SundaySupper

I’m so happy we’re celebrating Cinco de Mayo with a Sunday Supper fiesta today.  I made Peanut Mazapanes, a traditional Mexican candy.  These are so easy to make.  Just three ingredients and a food processor leave you with a fun and delectable no bake treat.  Soft and creamy with a bit of texture from peanuts, these almost melt in your mouth and will leave you wanting to celebrate Cinco de Mayo every day.

 Peanut Mazapanes #SundaySupper

Peanut Mazapanes #SundaySupper

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Total Time: 5 minutes

Yield: About 20 pieces

Ingredients

2 cups dry roasted unsalted peanuts (I used Planters)

1 cup confectioners’ sugar

1 tablespoon creamy peanut butter (I used Skippy Natural)

Instructions

In the bowl of a food processor, process the peanuts until they are about the texture of coarse meal. Do not process too long or it will turn into peanut butter. Add the confectioners’ sugar and peanut butter and process for about 2 minutes, scraping down the bowl halfway through, until a paste is formed and all ingredients are fully combined.

Pour the mixture onto plastic wrap. Wrap it up, forming it into a log with about a 1 ½ - 2 inch diameter as you wrap. Refrigerate until firm, about 2 hours. Using a sharp knife, slice into about ½ inch thick slices. Slices may be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.

Notes

Candy needs to chill for 2 hours before slicing and serving

http://piesandplots.net/peanut-mazapanes/

Please check out all the other Sunday Supper dishes too!

Cinco de Mayo Appetizers & Sides {Aperitivos}:

Cinco de Mayo Main Dishes {Platos Principales}:

Cinco de Mayo Desserts {Postres}:

Cinco de Mayo Drinks {Bebidas}:

Join the #SundaySupper conversation on Twitter on Sunday, May 5th to celebrate Cinco de Mayo! We’ll tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm EST. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag, and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. Check out our #SundaySupper Pinterest board for more delicious recipes and food photos.

Microwave Biscoff Fudge

Biscoff Fudge

I don’t usually follow trends.  I love my big high heeled platforms even when stilettos are in.  Bright blue nail polish coats my nails in January when Chanel is pushing a new version of black.  Fancy full skirted party dresses are part of my wardrobe when simple skirts are filling the runways.  The same goes for food.  French fries are better than onion rings, tender filet mignon than trendy flank steak, and plain old PB & J than PB & foie.  When it comes to desserts I’ll always love pecan pie and vanilla cake no matter how many cake pops one makes.

But since becoming a blogger, I’ve read a lot of recipes using Biscoff cookie butter.  I’ve had the cookies before, but never heard of, let alone tried, the spread.  So this time I succumbed to a trend.  I bought a jar of cookie butter, even though I had no idea what I was going to do with it.

You might remember my crazy easy microwave peanut butter fudge from awhile ago.  It is made in the microwave, and takes only 4 minutes plus chilling.  I loved it; I still love it, but I wanted to mix it up, recreate it, do something different.  There’s always the obvious almond or sunflower butter or even the possibility of trying chunky peanut butter.  But all of those options were too boring and similar to the original.

Butter and Biscoff

Melted Butter and Biscoff

Then I caught a glimpse of that red lidded jar of Biscoff spread sitting in the pantry just asking to be turned into some amazingly tasty treat.  It was destined to become fudge.

Because I’d never tasted, nor baked with Biscoff before, I had no idea if this would work.  It looked similar, perhaps a little lighter in color to the peanut butter fudge.  The uncooled mixture tasted good.  But it had to be chilled to see if the great Biscoff experiment worked.  In the meantime I tasted the spread.  It smells and tastes just like the cookies it’s made from, with a smooth texture and deep, rich gingerbread-like flavor.  I’m not sure if I could spread it on bread like peanut butter, but I’d sure give it a try.

Fudge Dough

Pan of Fudge

A little more than two hours later, I pulled the fudge from the refrigerator and cut it into pieces.  It crumbled slightly, but so did the original, so this is okay.  It was taste test time.  The fudge was bliss in my mouth.  Firm, but creamy, the flavor is incredible with that sweet-spicy, but not overpowering gingerbread flavor.  It just might be better than the original.  Maybe Alton Brown will actually retweet my reinterpretation of his recipe.  That would make this the best day ever.  And even if he doesn’t at least I still have my trendy Biscoff fudge to comfort me!

Biscoff Fudge

You can check this recipe and many other yummy ones out at the Wednesday Cast Party from the Lady Behind the Curtain!

5.0 from 3 reviews
Microwave Biscoff Fudge
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 64 pieces
 
Ingredients
  • 2 sticks unsalted butter
  • 1 cup creamy Biscoff spread
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 pound (1 regular size box) confectioners’ sugar
Instructions
  1. Put butter and Biscoff in a microwave safe medium-large bowl. Cover with a paper plate. Plastic wrap may alternatively be used, but I didn’t want to put plastic in the microwave. Microwave on high for 2 minutes. Stir to combine before returning to the microwave for 2 minutes more. The mixture will be hot and bubbling. Stir to combine. Then immediately stir in the vanilla followed by the confectioners’ sugar. Stir until mixture becomes thick, stiff, and loses its sheen, about 5 minutes.
  2. Spread the fudge in an 8-inch square pan lined with parchment paper. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours, and up to 5 before removing from refrigerator and pan and cutting into 64 1-inch pieces, 8 cuts across, 8 cuts down.
  3. May be stored at room temperature for up to 1 week or frozen wrapped in parchment and foil and placed in a zipper bag for up to 4 months. Thaw at room temperature for several hours.
Notes
Recipe adapted from and inspired by Alton Brown

 

 

Vanilla Fudge

Uncut Fudge

Sometimes people surprise you in the best way possible.  It’s even better when you least expect it.  My blog is about three months old.  I’d like to think it’s doing pretty well for the budding adventure it is, but I really have no idea.  I only know I have a long way to go if it is going to become my career or help me turn my aspiring novelist status into published novelist status, particularly when a giveaway results in only a handful of entries.  My days are filled with various tasks to help my dreams come true.  One of the most fascinating and frustrating is Twitter.

I tweet celebrities a lot.  Sometimes it’s to compliment them, ask them a question, ask for a retweet of my blog, or tell them an adaptation of one of their recipes has been posted here.  Each one is sent with wishes and hopes that they’ll respond, but far more often than not, they don’t.  I get it; they’re busy and get lots and lots of Tweets.  Sometimes I do get a response, something that surprises and exhilarates me, as I’ve come to expect no response.  Andrew Zimmern, Aida Mollenkamp, and Melissa D’Arabian have retweeted my blog; Gail Simmons and Kristen Chenoweth answered fashion questions; Sunny Anderson is great about responding, as is Momofuku Milk Bar; Susannah Collins followed me, and many companies respond quickly when Tweeted.

A fan of the Today show as long as I can remember, I follow Katie Couric, who recently Tweeted asking who to follow on Pinterest.  Spur of the moment, I somehow found the courage inside me to Tweet her back saying she should follow me.  I never expected her to, but what did I have to lose?  One of my fifty some followers?  And then something happened.  I got an email from Pinterest saying Katie Couric was following me.  That’s right.  Katie Couric followed me.

It was a moment of pure joy and one of feeling like maybe one day soon someone would notice me, maybe one day soon my dreams might start coming true.  Because that’s really what this blog is about.  Yes, it’s about amazingly delicious sweets, with a few savory recipes thrown in for good measure.  But it’s also about working toward a bigger goal, a dream, and hopefully watching as they become reality.  I’m on a long road, and I’m not always sure where it’s going, but I hope this road leads me to published novels and a blog with more readers than my aunt and a few family friends.  So for all of you out there who are reading this and have dreams of your own, and who doesn’t have a dream or two, keep fighting for it.  And maybe you could pass this along to others to see if with your help maybe my dreams will come just a little closer.  And if you’re on Pinterest or Twitter, go follow Katie Couric, because while what she did was probably just about the tiniest blip on her radar it was the star in mine.

Bubbling Fudge

Pouring Fudge

Stirring Fudge

Speaking of dreams, I dream about eating fudge a lot.  Seriously, when you can’t have chocolate that means no fudge from a store because it either contains chocolate or is cross-contaminated with it, and it means a sad dessert life.  There was the peanut butter fudge a couple weeks ago, but this is real deal fudge.  Smooth, creamy, not too sweet, it made my fudge dreams come true.  Now about those other dreams . . .

Overhead Fudge

Fudge

 

4.3 from 4 reviews
Vanilla Fudge
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 64 pieces
 
Ingredients
  • 1 tablespoon cold unsalted butter, plus more for pan
  • 1 ½ cups heavy cream
  • 3 cups sugar
  • ¼ cup light corn syrup
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
Instructions
  1. Line an 8-inch square baking pan with parchment with enough overhang to pull the fudge out of the pan. Butter the parchment. Place a large bowl on a wire cooling rack and put the butter in the bowl.
  2. Put cream, sugar, corn syrup, and salt into a large saucepan and cook over medium-low to medium heat, stirring constantly, until the sugar has dissolved. This will take 10 minutes or more. Once the sugar has dissolved, attach a candy thermometer to the pan, raise the heat to medium or medium high, and bring the mixture to a boil without stirring. Continue to cook the mixture without stirring until it reaches 238 degrees F on the candy thermometer, about 10 to 15 minutes. Do not walk away from the mixture or rely on time to tell when it is done. Watch the candy thermometer. The mixture will bubble a lot. Make sure it does not bubble over the pan.
  3. Once the mixture has reached the desired temperature, immediately pour it into the bowl with butter on the cooling rack without scraping the bottom of the pan (that is still good for tasting once it has cooled slightly). Attach the candy thermometer to the bowl, and allow the mixture to cool to 110 degrees F, about 1 ½ hours. Do not stir in the butter while cooling.
  4. After the mixture has cooled, remove the thermometer and take the bowl off the rack. Using a wooden spoon, stir the mixture, increasing in speed until it thickens, lightens in color, and loses its sheen, about 10 minutes. (This is a workout, but just remember it’s burning off the calories for a piece or two!)
  5. Pour the stirred mixture into the pan with buttered parchment, quickly spreading it to the sides of the pan and smoothing the top. Let the fudge cool on the wire rack for one hour before refrigerating, covered with plastic, until set, at least 5 hours, but 8 is better. Gently loose the fudge from the parchment before cutting into 64 pieces for serving. It will be very soft, so take your time when cutting.
  6. Store at room temperature for 1 day in a zipper bag, in the refrigerator for 1 week in a zipper bag, or in the freezer, wrapped in parchment and foil and placed in a zipper bag for up to 4 months. Thaw at room temperature for about an hour for a few pieces, longer for the whole pan.
Notes
Recipe adapted from Martha Stewart

 

Microwave Peanut Butter Fudge

Pb Fudge

I love grocery stores.  It’s a phenomenon I can’t explain, but there are few things in life I look forward to more than heading to one of my favorite food stores, and there are many, looking around, and buying all the amazing things they have to offer.  Over the past couple of years I’ve found my favorite products at my favorite stores.  Fish and produce from Papa Joe’s Market, dry goods and the basics from Kroger, peanut butter, candy, cookies, and snacks from Trader Joe’s.

In fact Trader Joe’s may be my favorite store to explore.  There’s so much crammed into those aisles; everytime I look I see something new.  Don’t get me started on the Gummy Tummies (you’ll learn more about my obsession with candy as time goes on), the Lentil Curls may be the best snack ever, and at Christmastime, the Gingerbread Men are among the best grocery store cookies available.

Trader Joe's Peanut Butter

Then there’s the peanut butter.  Have you ever taken a look at what’s in most of the typical grocery store peanut butters?  Sugar, oils, mono and diglycerides.  The reduced fat ones are even worse, typically containing the same amount of calories with some of the healthy peanut fat removed and replaced with more yucky ingredients.  Even the natural grocery store brands still usually contain some added sugar and oils.  Enter Trader Joe’s amazing nut butters.  I’m focusing on peanut here, but they also have delicious almond butters, in addition to sunflower seed butter.

I almost always buy unsalted nut butters, though the salted ones are just as yummy and high quality, so the only ingredient?  Peanuts.  Yes, it looks a little different when you open it.  There’s a bunch of oil sitting on top.  With some muscle the oil is stirred in, don’t discard, leaving a final product that is creamy and super peanuty.  I prefer it chilled in the refrigerator, where it must be stored once opened.  When cold, its texture is quite similar to that of the grocery store peanut butters even I was used to a long time ago.  I can’t say enough good things about Trader Joe’s Peanut Butter, so go grab a jar, and then try it out on this amazing recipe.  Then I know you won’t be able to tell the difference.

Fudge is yummy.  However, most of it contains chocolate, and even the ones that don’t are far too risky for me to eat since they are made on equipment that processes chocolate constantly.  This has left me in a fudge free world for quite some time, and that is simply a world I’m not okay with.

Pb Fudge Mixture Stirring

I’d like to try some more traditional fudge in the future, but for now, this more than hit the spot.  I wanted something easy to make, and it doesn’t get any easier than Alton Brown’s Microwave Peanut Butter Fudge.  I never knew the fantastic things that could come out of the microwave.

It takes a little muscle to bring the fudge together (thanks, Mom, for doing the stirring!), and a lot of willpower to resist eating until chilled, but as Alton himself would say your patience will be rewarded.

Pb Fudge in Pan

The final product has an intense peanut butter flavor with perfect sweetness, and a texture that is soft and creamy.  The peanut butter comes through, while being mellowed, though not overpowered by sweetness.  It’s kind of like the ultimate version of the inside of Reese’s Pieces, or Reese’s Cups, I imagine.  While an allergy friendly nut butter would work here, I wouldn’t use anything crunchy, or it will throw off the silky smooth texture.  In addition, I would refrigerate the peanut butter before making this to give it a firmer consistency, making it easier to work with.  A small portion goes a long way, as it is very rich.  Plus the smaller the portion, the less guilt there is for eating more than one piece.  It will fly off the plate, and you’ll be quickly whipping this up as your new go-to dessert recipe all the time.

Pb Fudge

5.0 from 6 reviews
Microwave Peanut Butter Fudge
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 64 Pieces
 
Ingredients
  • 2 sticks unsalted butter
  • 1 cup Trader Joe’s Unsalted Creamy Peanut Butter
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 pound confectioners’ sugar (usually a whole box)
Instructions
  1. Put the butter and peanut butter in a medium to large bowl. Cover with a paper plate. Plastic wrap may alternatively be used, however, I wasn’t so sure about plastic in the microwave. Microwave on high for 2 minutes. Stir before microwaving on high for two more minutes. The mixture will be bubbling and incredibly hot, so use caution. Stir briefly before adding vanilla and confectioners’ sugar. Stir with a large spoon to incorporate all of the ingredients. The mixture will become difficult to stir and will lose its sheen. Once this has happened, scoop the mixture into a square 8 inch pan lined with parchment paper with a large overhang. Spread the mixture as evenly as possible in the pan. Fold excess parchment over the top of the fudge to cover it. Refrigerate until completely cooled, about 2 hours. Cut into 64 1 inch pieces, 8 cuts across the top, 8 cuts down the side. Fudge may be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to one week. Alternatively, fudge freezes incredibly well. To do so, wrap it in parchment and foil, place it in a freezer bag, and thaw at room temperature for several hours before enjoying.
Notes
Recipe adapted from Alton Brown

 

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