In my opinion, homemade holiday gifts are the best kind. Particularly if they're edible, and especially if they're chocolate. Nothing would make me happier than to get a gift-wrapped box of homemade fudge as a Christmas present. (Actually, who am I kidding? You don't have to gift-wrap it. Put the fudge in a zip-lock bag for all I care. It's fudge!!)
Anyway, another great thing about giving fudge as a gift is that it stays fresh longer than cookies or most other treats (with the exception of fruitcake, but who wants that??). If properly wrapped, fudge will keep for up to two weeks.
This fudge recipe from Martha Stewart is much easier than most because it doesn't require a candy thermometer. So even the kids can help out!
I can't wait to receive give this fudge as a gift ...
- 2 cups sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 3 1/2 cups mini marshmallows
- 3 cups semisweet or white chocolate chips
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup crushed peppermint candy
- Line a 9-by-13-inch baking pan with two sheets of waxed or parchment paper in a crisscross manner (one lengthwise, one crosswise) so ends overhang sides of pan; coat evenly with cooking spray.
- In a heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium heat, cook sugar, salt, butter, cream, and marshmallows, stirring, until butter and marshmallows are almost melted, 5 to 6 minutes.
- Bring mixture to a boil; cook, stirring occasionally, 5 minutes. Remove from heat. Add chips and vanilla; stir until chips are melted. Pour mixture into lined pan.
- Let fudge cool in the pan at room temperature, 3 hours. Use edges of paper to lift out fudge; place on cutting board and remove paper. Cut out shapes with cookie cutters, or cut fudge into bars. Sprinkle evenly with crushed candy.
Image via Eldriva/Flickr