Aunt Pat’s No-Fail Fudge

I’m sure you’ve seen foolproof recipes for fudge before. They have sweetened condensed milk in them, right? Well these recipes aren’t for true fudge. Real fudge is made by cooking sugar, butter and milk. And this can be a bit tricky. Lucky for you and me, my great aunt’s recipe for old-fashioned real fudge is as easy and foolproof as those impostor fudges.

Why is Aunt Pat’s fudge foolproof? Because it tastes good even if you mess up the recipe. It’s very forgiving. So if you make a mistake, don’t worry!

Here’s what you’ll need:
1 can evaporated milk (12 ounces)
1/2 lb. butter (2 sticks)
4 cups granulated sugar
12 ounces chocolate chips, milk chocolate or semi-sweet
pinch of salt
1 tsp. vanilla

Combine all the ingredients except the chocolate chips in a large heavy-bottom saucepan.

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Bring to a boil over medium-low heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon. Once it’s boiling, let it go over low heat, stirring regularly. Be patient. Make sure to stir it and let it heat to a boil slowly; if you don’t, it will burn.
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Continue to boil the mixture until it reaches soft ball stage (soft balls form when small drops of the mixture are put in cold water or the mixture reaches 234 degrees). It should take about 45 minutes to get the mixture to soft ball stage. Don’t panic if your mixture cooks beyond 234 degrees. Your fudge will be harder when it cools, but it will still be tasty!

When the mixture reaches soft ball stage, remove from the heat and stir in the chocolate chips until melted. Pour the mixture into a greased 9 x 13 pan. If your mixture was heated over 234 degrees, you will have to do this quickly because the fudge will start setting right away.
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Once the fudge has cooled, cut into squares and enjoy! Yummy.
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Although this fudge tastes pretty darn good as is, you can be creative and try some twists:

  • Press toasted coconut in the top of the fudge before it cools and sets
  • Drizzle the top of the fudge with melted white chocolate
  • Sprinkle the top of the fudge with peanut butter chips before it cools and sets

This fudge is great for a sweet holiday gift for co-workers or family and friends. This recipe makes a ton, so you may want to give at least some away or you may gain a few pounds before the New Year. Old-fashioned fudge is hard to eat in moderation. :)

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