Fudge Makes Everything Better

by Bella Rum

st-nickI cooked this morning. I simmered giblets for hours to make broth to use in the gravy and stuffing. I made potato salad and deviled eggs to go with the ham on Christmas Eve. I put the ingredients together for green bean casserole for H. I don’t think anyone else likes it… maybe my grandson. He’s good about  trying things for the first time, but I decided if H wanted it, he should have it. I also made a cake at H’s request. He’s been a very good boy, and should have what he wants. I’ll cook the ham in the morning before the kids arrive. I’ll do the turkey, stuffing, gravy and mashed potatoes on Christmas Day. That’s the plan.

H made fudge yesterday. First time. I have an easy-peasy microwave recipe, and it’s perfect for gifts. I found the cutest little tins at – where else? Dollar Tree. H keeps taunting me about Dollar Tree disappearing after the inauguration. Out of revenge for Trump being Trump, the Chinese will abandon all Americans who love cheap, brightly colored, plastic, durable (for twenty-four hours) stuff. Of course, he’s joking. Definitely kidding. Where else would we get our arsenic, bromine and chlorine tainted stuff?

Okay, this is getting not very Christmasy when all I wanted to do was wish you a Merry Christmas. So hear’s a fudge recipe to brighten things up.

I have Christmas memories of my sisters making the fudge that was on the side of the Hershey’s cocoa box. It was a little more complicated before we had microwaves. They didn’t have a candy thermometer so they used the cold water trick. When they thought it was ready, they would drop a bit into a glass of water. If it formed a ball that held its shape, it was done. Our recipe is much less complicated. My son came home from school one day with this recipe. His teacher wanted us to make it for something special at school. I’ve long forgotten what the occasion was, but I have not forgotten this recipe. It was fun to make it with him.

Quick and Easy Microwave Fudge

1 16-oz package (3 1/2 cups) powdered sugar, sifted
1/2 cup Hershey’s Cocoa
1/4 cup whole milk
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
14 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 cup butter, cut into small cubes
1 cup chopped pecans (optional)

Line bottom of an 8-inch square baking dish with parchment paper; set aside. Combine first six ingredients in a medium mixing bowl, stirring gently. Add butter; microwave, uncovered, on high for two to three minutes, or until thoroughly heated and butter is melted. Stir until smooth. If desired, stir in chopped pecans or leave fudge smooth . Pour mixture into prepared dish. Refrigerate until firm; cut into squares.

Note: If you choose to leave fudge smooth, you can place a whole pecan on top of each square of fudge before it’s fully firm.

I wish all of you a Merry Christmas and a happy holiday season. May you and your loved ones remain safe and well and enjoy the spirit of the days between now and the New Year.