Warning, it is indeed candy season. That seasonal urge to make candy for myself and for gifts is upon me once more and happily there is a new book out there to give me some new ideas. Sally’s Candy Addiction by Sally McKenney is full of recipes, advice for making it easy or when you mess it up, and best yet so very many sweet tooth craving inducing pictures. I love how down to earth this author is. It feels like you are reading candy making notes from a friend. She shares her triumphs, her mistakes and best of all how she tried to salvage those mistakes. Very useful for when you also make those mistakes.
Each chapter presents first a basic look at say a chocolate, fudge, or taffy then shows progressively newer takes on that classic. The last recipe of the chapter is her wow factor recipe. It took me a long time to choose just one recipe to share with you but this one blew me away not just with how tasty and pretty it is (great for gifts!) but because of how easy it is. Who doesn’t love making something that looks so difficult for people to ooh and aah over but was actually as easy as heating, stirring, and pouring? I know I do. Kind of like that lady from that old rice crispy treat commercial. Don’t forget to puff flour in your face and look exhausted when you present these beauties. I’ll let Sally take it from here.
CREAMY CRANBERRY PISTACHIO FUDGE
Prep time: 15 minutes
Total time: 6 hours, 15 minutes or overnight
Makes: 64 x 1-in (2.5cm) squares
I recently became obsessed with a pistachio white chocolate cranberry cookie I posted on my blog. If you haven’t noticed by now, I’m obsessed with a lot of things. But my love for those cookies is borderline crazy. I took the same exact flavors and made fudge with them this past holiday season. My husband’s coworkers went nuts for it. The base of this creamy fudge recipe is my Shortcut Chocolate Fudge (page 148), only this time, I use white chocolate chips instead of semi-sweet chocolate.
- 14oz (396g) can full-fat sweetened condensed milk
- 3 cups (546g) white chocolate chips
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- ⅛ tsp salt
- 1 cup (120g) dried cranberries
- ¾ cup (92g) shelled salted pistachios
- 8-in (20cm) square baking pan
- Line an 8-in (20cm) square baking pan with aluminum foil, leaving enough overhang on the sides to easily remove the fudge once it has set. Set aside.
- Combine condensed milk and white chocolate chips in a medium-size saucepan over medium heat. Stir constantly with a rubber spatula or wooden spoon as the chips melt. Once the mixture is smooth and the chips have melted, remove pan from the heat. The mixture will be extremely thick at this point. Stir in the vanilla extract, salt, cranberries, and pistachios until combined. Pour the thick mixture into the prepared pan and smooth into an even layer.
- Cover with aluminum foil and refrigerate for 4 hours, or until set. Alternatively, you can let the covered fudge sit at room temperature overnight to set. Once set, remove the fudge from the pan by lifting out the aluminum foil. Invert the fudge onto a cutting board, peel away foil, and turn the fudge back over. Using a large sharp knife, slice the fudge into 1-in (2.5cm) squares. (If the fudge has been in the refrigerator for longer than 4 hours, it might be quite stiff; if so, allow to sit at room temperature for 20 minutes before cutting.)
Fudge is a perfect recipe to make ahead of time for gift-giving and holidays. Unless otherwise noted, these are the instructions for storing:
- Layer cooled fudge pieces between sheets of parchment or wax paper and store in an airtight container at room temperature in a cool, dry place for up to 1 week or in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks.
- To freeze the fudge, individually wrap pieces of fudge or double wrap the entire batch of fudge in plastic wrap and store in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 2 months; thaw overnight in the refrigerator before serving.
Sally Says: I use both a pinch of salt and salted pistachios in this fudge. White chocolate chips are quite sweet, so these additions of salt balance the flavor wonderfully.
© 2015 text and photos by Sally McKenney
See how pretty and wonderfully easy this treat can be? Those colours are great for fall or winter holidays. Want something even more fall related what about making some of her Pumpkin Spice Toffee? Or Chai Tea Truffles? Or some all year fun like Lemon Cream Pie Truffles or Birthday Cake Fudge? I know. See? It was so hard to choose! I’m going to be busy making candy. Remember, you can still have candy while trying to eat healthy, just everything in moderation. Oh yay, I actually get to say this. *cough* Hold on, got to get ready for it.