Coffee Swirl Fudge

Okay, here it is… the famous fudge recipe. This recipe, which originally flavored the fudge with coffee liquor in addition to coffee (it’s excellent either way), comes from an old paperback Pillsbury holiday cookbook. It’s a “cheater” fudge recipe because it uses marshmallow creme instead of making you break out a candy thermometer, but no one who’s eaten the final product has ever complained. I sold this fudge in high school for fundraisers, gave it to teachers in May Day baskets, and used it for a 4-H project. It ships nicely in the winter for Christmas gifts. One of my best friends still claims he became my friend because of this fudge. It does melt easily, so keep that in mind when making and distributing it, but otherwise it is a pretty versatile dessert.

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Though easier than many fudge recipes, this version does have a few tricks. First, get a sou chef to help you out if you can. If not, you can still make it on your own just fine as long as you prep parts in advance and make sure you get everything you need out ahead of time. Second, remember that the fudge won’t really be ready to cut and eat until the next day, so make it the day before you want it. And third, though I know it’s tempting, don’t over-swirl the fudge; it’s actually prettiest with only a few swirls. The fudge takes less than an hour to make, but several hours to set. It also takes a fair chunk of time to cut it (rinse the knife in hot water regularly while cutting to keep the chocolate from sticking too much), and more time to wrap each piece if you choose to do so.

Cutting the fudge.

Cutting the fudge.

Coffee Swirl Fudge

Ingredients
2 ½ C sugar
½ C butter
5 oz. evaporated milk
7 oz. marshmallow crème
3 oz. almond bark or white chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 cup (6 oz.) semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 TBS espresso or double-strength coffee*
*To make double-strength coffee, dissolve ½ teaspoon instant coffee granules in 1 tablespoon hot water.

Directions
1. Start with prep. Line 9-inch square pan with foil so that foil extends over sides of pan; butter foil. Chop white chocolate and make coffee; set aside. If you buy the plastic containers of marshmallow creme, I also recommend opening that ahead of time, just because it’s sticky and hard to open in a hurry later. One last thing:  make sure there is room in your fridge for the fudge to set!

2. In a large saucepan, combine sugar, butter and evaporated milk. Bring to a boil over medium heat and boil 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Seriously, set the timer and do not leave the stove.

3. At the end of five minutes, turn off the stove and add the marshmallow crème; stir until smooth.

(Steps 4-6 must be completed fairly quickly so the fudge doesn’t begin to harden.)

4. Pour 1 cup of marshmallow mixture into a small bowl and add almond bark and coffee. Stir until smooth. Set aside.

5. To remaining marshmallow mixture, add chocolate chips (and coffee liqueur, if desired); stir smooth.

6. Pour the chocolate mixture into the pan first. Spread/pour the almond bark mixture on top of chocolate mixture in pan. Using a spatula or butter knife, swirl (don’t blend) the two mixtures together for a marbled effect. You may not see the swirls on top, but you will see them when you cut the fudge later. If you want swirls on top, slant your knife/spatula slightly to sort of “spoon” some chocolate on top.

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7. Refrigerate fudge until firm. This may take several hours.

8. To remove fudge from pan, lift foil, then remove foil from fudge—it should come off fairly easily. Cut fudge into about 36 squares (or any number, really, depending how large of pieces you want). Wrap individually or in blocks. Store in refrigerator.

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