Have a happy fudging Christmas: fudge, three ways

Fudge BoardWell shit, once again it’s that time of year where I manage to ignore my girlfriend and family’s requests to go shopping, to the point where I only have a couple of days to do the Christmas shopping. Unfortunately, life as a chef and food blogger is not most accommodating for catching up on your Christmas shopping. Every time I have found a moment to myself, quite literally the last thing I even want to think about is Christmas shopping. For example, today (being my first day off for Christmas) would have been ideal to head off out into the rain, probably to Oxford Street and get everyone presents. However, despite the fact that even the thought of a busy shopping spree upsets me, something inside me urged me to make fudge and then write about it? Why not?

So, this year I thought “screw it” I’m going to take a stand! For all those out there in the same situation I urge you to come forward and join, I’m just making some snazzy fudge. After all, it’s the thought that counts right?

Now I can appreciate that making fudge for a present is a bit of a cop out. However, surely the same can’t be said for making three different types of fudge? Well, that’s my logic anyway. So after careful consideration (363 days to be precise) I have concluded that fudge it is. If anyone is in the same position this close to Christmas then we must lead similar lifestyles. If you’re stuck for ideas, or the most expensive flowers in the service station just won’t do this year then no fear, ‘Articuleat’ is here to save the day.

It’s quite ironic that a product accidently created in Virginia; USA, by a toffee maker’s apprentice is now going to be the saviour of my Christmas. Allegedly a toffee demonstration went wrong and it was taken off at the wrong temperature, this is also apparently where the term “to fudge something up” came from. Anyway things have come a long way since then and this fudge is purposeful.

Right then! Back to the recipe, as I said earlier we are making three different types of fudge, the first being dark chocolate and fresh orange. If you are a regular reader of ‘Articuleat’, then you already know that I like to make things from scratch, this trio of fudge certainly doesn’t break this trend. In order to get a potent orange taste to infuse into my fudge, I squeezed the juice from four oranges, then reduced it into a 100ml, concentrated juice. This was then added to my fudge along with some orange zest, the result – deliciousness.

The second fudge is white chocolate, spearmint and hazelnut. For this I had to work out the best way to infuse the spearmint into my fudge. In the end I decided to make a clear sugar syrup using caster sugar and water, when this was hot I added mint in order to capture the spearmint flavour within the syrup. Finished off with some fine julienne mint leaves and toasted hazelnuts and we’re done.

The third and final fudge is milk chocolate, raisin and toasted walnut. This is the simplest of the trio however if you have ever made fudge before you may know that white chocolate does not set as firm as others when used in fudge. Due to this I had to increase the white chocolate content to ensure that it would set correctly, I’m sure that no one will have an issue with extra chocolate?

Ingredients

(For the dark chocolate orange fudge)

-500g, caster sugar

-150g, dark chocolate, broken into small chunks (make sure it has at least a 70% cocoa solids content)

-500ml, double cram

-75g, liquid glucose

-Four oranges, keep the zest of 2 and the juice of all four

(For the white chocolate, spearmint and hazelnut fudge)

-500g, caster sugar

-350g, white chocolate, broken into small chunks

-500ml, double cream

-75g, liquid glucose

-80g fresh spearmint, 20g fine julienned, the rest for the sugar syrup

-75g, hazelnuts, toasted and skin removed

(For the milk chocolate, raisin and walnut fudge)

-500g, caster sugar

-150g, milk chocolate

-75g, liquid glucose

-75g, raisins, soaked for a few minutes in boiling water then drained thoroughly

-75g, walnuts, toasted

Method (each recipe makes around 800g of fudge)

(For the dark chocolate orange fudge)

  1. Firstly bring the orange juice to the boil and simmer until you have 100ml left in the pan. This will leave you with a concentrated orange juice, which is perfect; we want the flavour, not the liquid. Take the orange zest and blanch it in boiling water 3 times, this takes the bitterness out of the zest and makes it nice to eat.
  2.  Combine the sugar, double cream and glucose in a pan then bring to the boil on a medium heat. Be sure to stir regularly to ensure that the ingredients are mixed and not sticking to the pan. Once melted and combined, boil until the mixture reaches 118 degrees centigrade, this is the temperature that sugar needs to be at to set into fudge, no more, no less.
  3.  Lastly remove from the heat and immediately mix in the dark chocolate, the concentrated orange juice and the zest (the heat from the sugar will melt the chocolate). Pour this mixture into a tray that is lined with cling film and parchment paper then set in the fridge, should take around an hour.

(For the white chocolate, spearmint and hazelnut fudge)

  1. Firstly take 50g of sugar and melt it in a pan with 100ml of water until combined. Once hot add the 80g of fresh spearmint and simmer for a few minutes. Next remove from the heat and food process the mixture in order to extract as much mint flavour as possible, next pass through a sieve to remove the mint but keep the liquid.
  2. Combine the mint sugar syrup with the rest of the sugar; double cream and glucose in a pan then bring to the boil on a medium heat. Be sure to stir regularly to ensure that the ingredients are mixed and not sticking to the pan. Once melted and combined, boil until the mixture reaches 118 degrees centigrade, this is the temperature that sugar needs to be at to set into fudge, no more, no less.
  3. Lastly remove from the heat and immediately mix in the white chocolate, toasted hazelnuts and the julienned mint leaves. Pour this mixture into a tray that is lined with cling film and parchment paper then set in the fridge, should take around an hour.

(For the milk chocolate, raisin and walnut fudge)

  1. Combine the sugar, double cream and glucose in a pan then bring to the boil on a medium heat. Be sure to stir regularly to ensure that the ingredients are mixed and not sticking to the pan. Once melted and combined, boil until the mixture reaches 118 degrees centigrade, this is the temperature that sugar needs to be at to set into fudge, no more, no less.
  2. Remove from the heat and immediately add the milk chocolate, softened raisins and the toasted walnuts. Pour this mixture into a tray that is lined with cling film and parchment paper then set in the fridge, should take around an hour.

So there you have it, a trio of Christmas fudge. I hope that you all enjoy this recipe and if necessary, use it to sort a few people out with Christmas presents. I now have to hope that none of my family will read this blog post until after Christmas; otherwise I will probably have to make something else.

Fudge BoardThanks very much for stopping by at Articuleat and I hope you have enjoyed your stay. I always look forward to your feedback so please don’t hesitate to get in touch for any reason whatsoever – I will reply as swiftly as possible.

From ‘Articuleat’ have a very happy Christmas and a great new year,

See you next time,

Eat Well,

Sebby Holmes

 

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