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Perfect Peanut Butter Fudge

Making great fudge is really more an “art” than just a task so don’t be afraid to make it several times before you start judging yourself too harshly. Practice WILL make perfect.

It is also a good idea to read all the directions before starting so you’ll have an idea of what to do next as you go along.

And in case you don’t notice… IF you are already practiced at making CHOCOLATE fudge this will be a no brainer for you because it is virtually the exact same recipe… except you leave out the cocoa and you don’t add the peanut butter until the cooking part is over.

And although I didn’t generally use it… if you like really creamy peanut butter… after you perfect doing this a little bit… try adding a small jar of marshmallow cream to this mixture just before putting in the peanut butter. Oh my.

Ingredients

2 cups white sugar
1 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cup smooth peanut butter
2 tablespoons margarine or softened butter

Equipment

Heavy medium sized pot
Candy thermometer (if preferred)
Wooden spoon
Large “serving” size/type platter

Directions

Use the softened butter or margarine to grease the serving platter. Set aside.

Combine sugar and milk in a medium saucepan. Stir until blended, then bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Reduce heat and simmer. Stirring is less important at this point.

Place candy thermometer in pan and cook until temperature reaches 238 degrees F(114 degrees C). The bulb of the thermometer should not be touching the bottom of the pan. (I never used a thermometer for mine.)

If you are not using a thermometer, then cook until a drop of this mixture in a cup of cold water forms a soft ball. Feel the ball with your fingers to make sure it is the right consistency. It should flatten when pressed between your fingers. This is the “art” part of the process. If you take it off before the soft ball stage your fudge will never set if you take it off too late after the soft ball has become hard-ish your fudge will be somewhere between too dry and hard candy. At tip that helps is to use VERY cold water. When I first started making this I would put a pitcher of water in the refrigerator early in the day so I’d have plenty ready for the soft-ball test later when I needed it. If you’ve never made candy or experienced the soft-ball concept expect this to take a few tests… and time, practice. It helps to realize the higher your simmering temperature of the burner it’s on will speed up the amount of time it takes to get there but will give you less room for error before it is too hot. You’ll take about a teaspoon of the hot mixture and place it into a cup of very cold water. Then nudge it with your finger tip pushing the mixture into a ball shape. If it falls completely apart and clouds the water… it is way too cool still… turn up the heat. You should be able to nudge it into a ball shape. It’ll be soft and you can flatten it back out. Then it is ready.

Remove from heat. Add vanilla extract. Stir in the peanut butter (and marshmallow cream if you’re using it) to thoroughly blend.

Be ready to pour it onto your buttered platter because you’ll very soon feel it stiffening and drying. You’ll need to get it out of the pot and onto the buttered platter before it cakes in the pan and can’t be removed.

Let cool. Then cut into even squares. Happy Eating. Mmmm Good.

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