Fudge is a quintessentially British treat. Made from boiled sugar, butter and milk, it’s a caramel confection – chewy, soft and very sweet.
I remember when I first moved to the UK, I discovered this fudge shop in my university town – it sold huge slabs of sugary fudge, in all kinds of flavours (my favourite was maple walnut). I wish I had this romantic memory of me stopping there regularly and buying a slice of fudge, but I think I only popped in once, bought a few different flavours and never managed to finish any of them. You see, fudge is SUPER sweet. It’s the kind of sweetness that makes your teeth hurt instantly. Don’t get me wrong, it’s awesome, but you can only eat so much. Hence, this is the perfect Christmas present, as one batch will be able to make little gifts for lots of people.
Now, a word of warning before you get stuck in: Fudge is tricky to make. Or, let’s put it this way: you NEED a sugar thermometer. Don’t try it without one! Seriously. I made my first batch with a faulty sugar thermometer (test it by dipping it into boiling water, if it indicates 100°C, it works). And thus, I overcooked my fudge by a few degrees. I ended up with very chewy toffee. Still good, but by no means comparable to the chewy yet slightly crumbly fudge texture.
So, the second time, I used a precise sugar thermometer and religiously monitored the rising temperatures – and, yipeee, it worked! And, it’s actually easy as pie once you realize that all you need is a sugar thermometer and vigilance.