bits and pieces

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Salted Caramel Fudge

I later returned to add more delicious salts. That's right salts. I used fleur du sel for the pretty
and some coarser kosher salt for the POP
CANDY CANDY CANDY CANDY. 

FUDGE FUDGE FUDGE. 

Two great words. One great treat.

Now here in ye old Prairie's it is Christmas Eve of 2013. It's time for snuggling down with family and madly dashing through the stores to pick up last minute gifts. It's a time for fireplaces and food, and taking a much needed rest from our already two months of winter. 

Oh yeah, and fudge! Salt caramel is here to stay and I couldn't be happier. The combination of sweet and salty is one of those that I love most. Add in the chewy and creamy texture of fudge and bam! You got me.

Now strangely, as a nine year old I went through a brief period of life in which I made a whole bunch of fudge. Chocolate fudge, peanut butter fudge, mint fudge, fudge-fudge. I have no idea why or how but my whole family had to put up with mountains of fudge for about 3 months before I moved on to the next obsession. While this is a strange story and I was an odd child, it serves to illustrate my broader point that this fudge is flippin' easy! 

While it involves a lot of hot sugar and I would not recommend letting YOUR child make it unsupervised, it is crazy easy to make this sweet and salty treat. I've also included cooking times for both fudge AND caramels. Yep! Two treats with the same recipe! All you need to adjust is the cooking time and kapow! Two treats for you! 

Add a little bit of waxed paper for the wrapping and some baggies for the bagging and you've got a mountain of homemade, last minute stocking stuffers or OMG-GET-IN-MY-MOUTH-stuffers. 


ingredients: 
2 cups white sugar
1/4 cup high quality H2O (water)
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1  can condensed milk (this is the sweet kind!)
1/2 cup butter, cut up a bit
1 tsp vanilla OR something funky like 1 tbsp bourbon! 
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
sea salt - you can get fancy and use fleur du sel, maldon, pink himalyan... 

other things you will need:
a candy thermometer! You can also try and repurpose a (clean) meat thermometer
a large sauce pan
a baking tray/dish lined with greased parchment paper
a whisk
patience so you don't try and eat your fudge/caramel while it's still hot and burn your mouth

  1. In your sauce pan, combine your corn syrup, sugar and water. 
  2. Over medium high heat, bring to a boil and wait for it mixture to turn a golden-y amber colour, which should take between 8 and 12 minutes depending on your stove and pot. 
  3. Once it has reached a glorious amber hue, remove it from the heat and add your condensed milk and your butter. It will harden up and bubble all strangely. This is OK. 
  4. Using your super strong arm strength, whisk the mixture until it is back to a lovely smooth consistency and return to heat. 
  5. Whisking frequently, simmer the mixture over medium-low heat until it reaches 230-240 degrees F. 230 degrees will leave you closer to what is called the soft-ball stage and will result in a more caramel-y Salted Caramel. 240 will get you much closer to fudge. 
  6. Once the desired temperature has been reached, stir in vanilla and 1/2 tsp of seasalt and stir. 
  7. Pour into your waiting baking dish, and allow to cool for 5 minutes before wantonly sprinkling with additional salt. It is very hard to add too much salt to this. It's so sweet and creamy that the salt is almost necessary. Use a liberal hand and sprinkle more than you think is  necessary. 
  8. Allow to cool for two hours (bummer!) in the fridge and then cut and enjoy! If you prefer to be fancy-fancy, cut some strips of waxed paper and wrap these puppies up like they're the real store bought thing. 

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