Friday, 4 November 2011

Easy caramel fudge

Before telling you about this sticky sweet fudge, I want to thank everyone who commented on the post about our boys.  Thank you to those who sent kind thoughts and to those who shared their own stories.  It all means a lot to us.  In fact I wish I could share some of this fudge with you.  I made it for the lunch to remember our boys.  Instead I will share with you some stories about Sylvia which are just as sweet. 

Experience of how fragile young life is, makes me ever appreciative of the joy that Sylvia brings to us.  She makes us smile with the things she says - "Can I look in the mirror to see if I look pretty?" or "Will you look after me when dadda's head is chopped off?" (that is a reference to the song, Oranges and Lemons!) or "You go to nursery and I'll go to work."  It amuses when she sings "London bridge is falling down, I better fix it".  She makes me laugh when she walks around the house in my shoes or talks about the birds eating lollypops or tells me she is a pussy cat and bites at her claws just like our cat Zinc does.

Tonight I found her planting the carrot sticks in a tub of hummus.  She told me it was a birthday cake.  Moments like these I love kids' imaginations.  But they can also be tricky to manage.  I gave her some seeded crackers earlier.  She told me that Dolly couldn't eat them because they have peanuts in them and make her sick.  The Sylvia starts to eat them herself.  It makes me wonder how much she understands her peanut allergy.  Perhaps it has been on her mind since we had carrot cake recently that I was ready to share out with Sylvia until I noticed that the nuts on the frosting were peanuts!

Back to the fudge.  I decided to make a butterscotch fudge on the weekend.  E loves fudge and is always asking for me to make butterscotch cake.  Fudge is also gluten free for the celiacs in the family.  Every butterscotch fudge recipe seemed full of butterscotch chips, which are not easy to find here.  I did however find a caramel fudge.

It was an easy recipe to make.  Just mix for 10 minutes on the stovetop.  No need for a candy thermometer and soft ball tests and all those dangers and challenges that I avoid.  Even better, it was full of condensed milk.  As an aside, I have been experimenting with making soy condensed milk tonight (more on that later), so I think a vegan version might well be possible. 

I was still paranoid enough to make sure I was well prepared with the tin lined with paper, Sylvia asleep in bed, the cat sunning herself on the shed roof and a good CD on repeat before starting to stir the fudge mixture for 10 minutes.  Just as well.  It was a long time to stand stirring the pot.  The mixture bubbled away like a volcano.  Too hot to taste.  Not so hot that it spat liquid everywhere.  But it needed constant attention.  As the recipe indicated, it set quickly.  I didn't have time to get it quite a smooth as I would have liked on top.

E's first reaction was that it was sweeter than any fudge he'd had.  The texture has that slight sandiness that fudge often has.  The flavour is the caramel of a cooked tin of condensed milk with a touch of golden syrup.  I cut it into small pieces.  One or two is plenty.  One or two is fantastic.  You can't go wrong with condensed milk.  Everyone enjoyed it at the lunch on the weekend and we still have lots of it left in the fridge.  I expect that there will be requests to make this fudge again and again.

Previously on Green Gourmet Giraffe
This time last year: GF Vegetarian Sausage Rolls
This time two years ago: The Cornbread that Stops a Nation
This time three years ago: Chocolate cake for our boys
This time four years ago: A Break in Beechworth

Easy Caramel Fudge
From Bundaberg Sugar
Makes 60 small pieces

125g butter
1½ cups brown sugar - not packed
2 tablespoons golden syrup
395g can condensed milk
180g white cooking chocolate, coarsely chopped
½ cup shelled, unsalted pistachio nuts (optional - I didn't use)

Line a small slice tin (28cm x 18cm x 3cm) with baking paper.

Melt butter in a large saucepan.  Add brown sugar, golden syrup and condensed milk.  Bring to the boil over a medium heat.  Reduce to a low heat and cook for 10 minutes, stirring constantly.

Remove from heat and add chocolate, stirring until smooth.  When you add the chocolate, the fudge will set quickly.  Pour into prepared tin immediately and spread evenly with the back of a spoon.

Cool to room temperature for at least 30 minutes.  Once set, cut into small pieces with a clean hot knife (I had to clean my knife under hot water a few times while cutting up the fudge).  Keep in fridge.  Ours has lasted a week and is still good.

On the stereo:
Pulp Hits: Pulp

14 comments:

  1. Gluten free fudge is just the thing I need to go in my friend's Christmas Hamper this year ;0)
    Thanks for sharing both the fudge recipe and the stories about Silvia. In a previous life I was a pre school teacher and we had a worm farm as we were trying to teach the kids about growing their own food. Every so often we would dig over the soil in the worm farm and give the worms so new food, all the kids used to be allowed to hold a worm while we were digging the soil and I remember one little boy coming back to me to ask for 'a new worm'. When I asked him what happened to the other one he answered 'it broke' ... sure enough I found two separate halves of a worm on the patio!! Good thing worms grow back!! Kids do say the funniest things though.

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  2. I love all your stories about Sylvia and the funny things she says. It makes me smile to think that one day I might have children of my own to make me laugh with their funny ways and sayings.

    Fudge looks fab - so sweet that I bet one square is plenty. Glad it was enjoyed!

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  3. I've never made fudge out of fear of needing a thermometer or having it spit hot liquid up at me. Thanks for demonstrating it doesn't have to end in such a way!

    Also, I love your stories about Sylvia - they are guaranteed to make me smile and today was no exception - and I am awestruck that you have attempted to make soy condensed milk. Awestruck!

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  4. Beautiful, Johanna, and I'm so glad that our comments gave you some measure of comfort xoxo

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  5. I love hearing your stories about Sylvia - she sounds like a real sweetie. I LOVE caramel fudge made with condensed milk - it's hard to look at this knowing that I can't have any.

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  6. I never know what to say on your posts about your boys but my heart is with you and your family.

    I love the Sylvia stories. :) And this fudge sounds delicious. Anything with condensed milk always catches my eye.

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  7. Thanks Chele - wish I was organised enough to be planning Christmas hampers. The fudge is really firm in the fridge but gets a bit softer at room temp. Love your story - I was worried you were going to say the kid had eaten the worm :-)

    Thanks C - I hope you do have children of your own to make you laugh (or some around you at least). One piece is plenty of this fudge though I confess to having 2 at times

    Thanks Kari - I was surprised how easy this fudge was - and also surprised at how easy the soy condensed milk is - will post about it soon

    Thanks Hannah - it is a comfort for the boys to be acknowledge and it is nice to have a space on the blog where this is so evident

    Thanks Cakelaw - wish I could share some fudge with you - there is plenty of it - and highly recommend you make some just to have a taste

    Thanks Ashely - there is very little that can be said about our boys but just a brief thinking-of-you helps - and I am glad you share my belief that condensed milk makes everything wonderful

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  8. Sugar, golden syrup, condensed milk and white chocolate! Yep, I can imagine why this might be the sweetest fudge E has ever tasted. :-D

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  9. This easy fudge recipe of yours sounds great. I haven't made fudge for years, but am now feeling tempted - maybe for Christmas,

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  10. mmm, I feel some home-made fudge-shaped Christmas pressies coming along!

    Lovely to hear stories about Sylvia :o) Children really do say the cutest things. I had this conversation with my niece recently:

    Her: Will your baby be here by Christmas?
    Me: I hope not, it's due in January
    Her: Well if it does come at Christmas you'll have to call it Jesus or God!

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  11. That Sylvia is such a hoot. :) I adore "real" fudge (of course--it's almost entirely sugar) and really do miss it. This one looks great! And sounds to me like you could use some more butterscotch chips. ;)

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  12. Blogger is SO frustrating! Just lost another comment. grr. Oh, well, the fudge looks great.

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  13. That brings back memories - I was talking to my mother about making condensed milk fudge only the other day. Although sometimes I think we just made caramels by cooking down the condensed milk.

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  14. Hey Hun - As promised I made this for the Girl's Hampers and they loved it!! Of course we tasted a wee bit of the trimmings and I have to make another batch for Sunday now lol.

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