Smooth, velvety and sweet, this recipe is all about childhood!
This childhood classic tastes as though “dinkum” chocolate has been used as an ingredient, yet there is not a morsel inside! This recipe is practical and delicious - it doesn’t require any special ingredients or equipment, and will be a sweet-treat favourite!
Despite its apparent simplicity, I somehow recall fudge being a bit tricky to master as a child. The process required undivided attention and perfect timing. The old adage ‘practice makes perfect’ really does apply here.
Growing up, I couldn’t wait for the annual Utrecht Agricultural Show to come around, and for the competitions catalogue to be released, so I could see which categories I could enter in the children’s section. Amongst others, Cocoa Fudge would be part of my offerings. So for weeks and weeks building up to the show, I would practice over and over again!
Mom was the best fudge teacher. I can still hear her voice, ‘watch it like a hawk’, ‘don’t allow it to boil before the sugar dissolves’, ‘scrape the sugar crystals off the sides of the pot, Julie’, ‘no, don’t stir it, it’s not at the soft ball stage yet!’ All of this came flooding back as I searched for this recipe among some threadbare, long-since-used recipe books. And what a gem of a find!
Eventually found in a Domestic Science recipe book called Foods and Cookery: First Metricated Edition, compiled by the Department of National Education, Home Economics Section, I simultaneously discovered why Mom was so pedantic when it came to making fudge!
Under the chapter ‘Sweets and General Hints for Sweet-Making’, I discovered the following guide to best guarantee smooth and creamy fudge, so helpful because sugar is, after all, the main ingredient:
- To ensure a velvety texture, the sugar should be dissolved in the liquid before the mixture begins to boil. Even a few crystals can cause the whole mixture to become granular.
- Before the sugar syrup comes to the boil, the sugar crystals adhering to the side of the saucepan should be washed down with a small brush dipped in hot water, or the lid can be placed on for a few minutes to allow the steam to melt the crystals.
- Sugar mixtures should not be stirred while boiling, except those which contain a high percentage of milk, cream and butter and likely to burn. Stir only when necessary, and just enough to prevent burning.
- When pouring out the mixture, tilt the saucepan enough to allow it to run freely. Do not shake or scrape the saucepan as this may cause the mixture to become granular.
- Once having reached the soft ball stage, the mixture should be left to cool a little. And then briskly beaten until it almost loses its gloss. This ensures that crystals which form are small, and that the texture of the fudge is velvety.
- Many believe that a sugar or candy thermometer is the only successful way of accurately testing the stages of the boiling process. Should you own one, the soft ball stage for fudge is 115°C. (Read instructions of usage on the packaging).
- Should you not own a candy thermometer, use the ‘Cold Water Test’ by dropping a few drops of the fudge mixture into some cold water in a tea cup after the first ten minutes. Leave to cool for a moment, then lift and test the firmness of the ball between the thumb and the forefinger. If it forms a soft, pliable ball, the fudge mixture has reached the ‘soft ball stage’.
Ungawusheshisa ngokuphazima kweso ngokusebenzisaizithako ezisephentri
Yenza 24 x 2 cm squares
Sebenzisa isospani eliphakathi nendawo ubukhulu eliwugqinsi ngezansi.
Gcoba indishi engama-20 x 10 cm square noma indishi ewunxandu.
Whip up a batch in no time with staple pantry ingredients!
Makes 24 x 2 cm squares
Use a medium-sized thick bottomed saucepan.
Grease an approximately 20 x10 cm square or rectangular pyrex dish.
2 izinkomishi zikashukela
5 izipuni (TBSP) ezilingene zikakhokho
1/8 ithisipuni likasawoti
2/3 inkomishi yobisi
2 ½ wezipuni ze-golden siraphu
2 izipuni (TBSP) zebhotela
2 ithisipuni ye-vanilla essence
2 cups sugar
5 TBSP (level) cocoa
⅛ teaspoon salt
⅔ cup of milk
2 ½ TBSP golden syrup
2 TBSP butter
2 teaspoons vanilla essence
1. Add the sugar, cocoa and salt to the saucepan and mix well.
2. Add the milk and syrup and whisk until mixture is blended well.
3. Heat the mixture slowly over a medium-low heat stirring constantly until the sugar has dissolved. (Do not allow the mixture to boil until all the sugar has dissolved otherwise your fudge will be grainy. (See tips on sweetmaking))
4. Bring to the boil. Turn down the heat and cook the mixture over as low heat as possible. Do not stir again.
5. Start checking the mixture for doneness after 10 minutes using the soft ball test. (see Sweets and General Hints for Sweet-Making – blog)
6. Remove the mixture from the heat. Add the butter and vanilla essence. Beat the mixture with a wooden spoon until fudge becomes thick and creamy, (but liquid enough to spread out evenly in the dish on its own) and loses its gloss.
7. Pour the fudge into the prepared dish and allow to cool before cutting into 2 cm squares with a thin bladed knife.
8. Store in an airtight container.
1. Faka ushukela, ukhokho kanye nosawoti kwisospani bese ukuhlanganisa kahle.
2. Faka ubisi kanye nesiraphu ukushaye ndawonye kuze kube inhlanganisela ehlangene kahle.
3. Shisisa inhlanganisela kancane emlilweni ongashisi kakhulu ube ugoqoza njalo kuze kube ushukela uyancibilika. (Ungalindi inhlanganisela ize ibile kuze kube ushukela uyancibilika, ngale kwalokho ifaji yakho izoba mahhadla. Bheka Amathiphu okwenza okunoshukela (link to blog). Kubilise. Yehlisa umlilo bese upheka inhlanganisela wehlise umlilo ube phansi. Ungabe usagoqoza futhi.
4. Qala ubheke inhlanganisela ukuthi ivuthiwe emva kwemizuzu eyi-10 ngokusebenzisa ibhola elithambile lokuhlola.
5. Susa inhlanganisela emlilweni. Faka ibhotela kanye ne-vanilla essence. Shaya inhlanganisela ngesipuni sokhuni/ukhezo kuze kube ifaji iyashuba, iba sakhilimu futhi iphela ukucwebezela, kodwa ibe wuketshezi ngokwanele ikwazi ukundlaleka endishini.
6. Thela ifaji endishini elungisiwe futhi uzame ukuthi iphole ngaphambi kokuthi uyisike izikwele ezingama-2 cm squares ngommese ozacile.
7. Kufake esitsheni esivaleka ngci singangenisi moya.
1. Ibhola elithambile lokuhlola – usebenzisa isipuni sensimbi uvuvuzele uhhafu wethisipuni yefaji enkomishini enamanzi abandayo. Yilinde iphole imizuzwana. Uma ithamba, yenze ibhola bese ulibacaza phakathi kweminwe yakho, isiphelile. Ngale kwalokho yipheke isikhathi esijana ube uyihlola umzuzu owodwa noma emibili kuze kube iyathamba kuze kube iba yibhola elithambile.
2. Enye ithiphu uma ifaji yakho isizolunga yilapho amagwebhu encipha ekubeni makhulu ehle abe mancane, abe amagwebu ashubile. Uma usubona lolu shintsho usungaqala uhlole, ngoba inhlanganisela ingaqala ukuqina kwimizuzwana uma iphekwa isikhathi eside kakhulu.
3. Faka ugoqoze u- ½ wenkomishi yamakinati owathandayo aqotshiwe ngaphambi kokuthi uthele inhlanganisela endishini. Yenza ngokushesha!
1. Soft ball test - using a metal spoon drizzle half a teaspoon of the fudge into a cup of cold water. Allow to cool for a moment. If it forms a soft, pliable ball and flattens between your fingers, it is done. Otherwise cook it a little longer testing it a minute or two at time until soft ball stage is reached.
2. Another hint that your fudge is almost ready is when the bubbles go from larger bubbles to smaller tighter bubbles. As soon as you notice this change start testing as the mixture can begin to harden in seconds if left cooking too long.
3. Stir in ½ cup chopped nuts of choice just before pouring the mixture into the dish. Work quickly!