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Saturday, 25 August 2012

Fudge Ideas

Whenever I see fudge on sale at a show or fete, I will always buy some. I have successfully made fudge myself in the past but to be honest I would rather let someone else do it - the way some people feel about jam!

Anyway, when I came across The Fudge Lady on facebook a few months ago I was really pleased to find someone in Milton Keynes making fudge and I instantly thought that I would like to offer her fudge along side my Jammy Cow products. I have visions of gift bags and hamper boxes at Christmas filled with Jammy Cow preserves, homemade biscuits and fudge - a lovely mix of local, tasty foodie gifts.

With the Woburn Abbey Garden Show last weekend, I thought I would try out The Fudge Lady's fudge on my Jammy Cow table to see how it went. So, I happily accepted 10 bags each of Vanilla, Milk Chocolate and Rum and Raisin Fudge from her on the Friday and put them on sale over what turned out to be the hottest weekend of the year! Even so, I sold most of the bags and was left with about 8 bags in a mixture of the flavours.

I am a sucker for fudge and could very probably have eaten my way through all 8 bags within a fortnight but that would probably not have been a good idea. Instead, when my husband asked if I would make cakes for him to take into work for this birthday on Thursday I saw an opportunity to try out some fudge recipes. The Vanilla fudge went into Banana Fudge Muffins, the Milk Chocolate fudge went into Poptastic Popcorn, and the Rum and Raisin into Rum and Raisin fairy cakes. Needless to say, what with a batch of Rhubarb & Ginger jam tarts and my Cherry Bakewells, Steve did not have any cakes left at the end of the day to bring home.

Banana Fudge Muffins (makes 12)

250g self-raising flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
60g fudge
75g light brown sugar
75g butter
125ml milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 medium eggs
2 medium over-ripe bananas
Runny honey

Preheat the oven to 190°C, gas mark 5 and line a muffin tin with 12 paper cases. Sift the flour and baking powder into a bowl. Cut the fudge into small pieces and drop into the flour. Add the sugar and stir. Melt the butter in a pan over heat or in the microwave then add the milk, vanilla and eggs to it and beat to combine. In another bowl, mash the bananas. Pour the wet mix into the dry mix and add the bananas then mix quickly until just combined. Spoon the mixture into the paper cases and bake for 20 minutes. Cool for 5 minutes then  coat the tops of each muffin with runny honey.

Poptastic Popcorn (makes 12)

45g popping corn
A little vegetable oil
120g marshmallows
60g milk chocolate fudge, cut into small pieces

Heat the oil in a medium saucepan then add the popping corn, put on the lid and wait for the corn to pop, swirling the pan occasionally. Remove the popcorn from the pan and place in a bowl. Reserve 20g of marshmallows (cut into small pieces if necessary). Place 100g of the marshmallows in the pan and heat gently, stirring constantly, until the marshmallows have melted. Tip the popcorn, fudge pieces and marshmallow pieces into the melted marshmallows and stir well until well coated. Pull out portions of the mixture, mould into rough balls and place into paper cases then allow to cool completely.

Rum and Raisin Fairy Cakes (makes 12)

60g raisins
2 tablespoons dark rum
90g soft margarine
90g caster sugar
2 medium eggs
90g self-raising flour
20g cocoa powder
60g butter
50g icing sugar
10g cocoa powder
60g rum and raisin fudge

Put the raisins in a jar with the rum and leave to soak over night or longer. Preheat the oven to 190°C, gas mark 5 and line a fairy cake tin with paper cases. In a large bowl, cream together the margarine and sugar then add the eggs one at a time. Sift in the flour and cocoa powder and stir until well combined. Next, dab the raisins dry on kitchen paper then add to the batter. Spoon the batter into the paper cases then bake for 15 minutes. Cool on a wire rack. In the meantime, cream together the butter, icing sugar and cocoa powder to make butter icing. When the cakes are cool, dollop the butter icing onto the top of each cake. Cut the fudge into 12 pieces and place a piece of fudge on top of each cake.

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