I wrote about this mocha fudge four years ago, and have made this fudge nearly every Christmas since then. Its coffee-chocolate kick is just plain awesome, and a welcome change from the cookies that seem de rigueur around the holidays. 😉 This recipe relies on marshmallow cream for both texture and stability. I decided to make it alongside the old-fashioned fudge medley I concocted this past Christmas, to see how the texture of a marshmallow cream fudge would compare to that of a fudge that uses only sugar.
The textures are decidedly different. Fudge made with only sugar is crumbly, yet creamy – a gustatory paradox if ever there was one – and melts in your mouth. This fudge is not crumbly at all; it feels slightly firmer than the old-fashioned fudge to bite into, and it has a silky mouthfeel. There is more body to this fudge than the old-fashioned kind, and it feels heavier in the hand. I prefer the old-fashioned kind, but my husband likes this kind better. I think the fudge you’ll generally find in cookie swaps, gift-giving, and office potlucks is probably this kind of fudge, and so it will be more familiar to people than the other kind.
This time around, I added cinnamon as called for in the original recipe. When posting about this fudge previously, I omitted the cinnamon because I hadn’t yet discovered how fiery, comforting, and delicious cinnamon can be when mixed with a hot mocha. I am here to tell you that I denounce my foolishness of olde, and will forevermore incorporate cinnamon into this fudge recipe. Somehow the flavours never seemed quite balanced with the fudge as I made it previously. The addition of cinnamon is exactly what the fudge needs for harmony of flavour. Next time, I think I will add vanilla and see how that turns out. 🙂
Yield: One 8″ pan, about 1″ thick
7 oz. marshmallow cream
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 stick butter (either salted or unsalted is fine), cut into 4 pieces
2/3 cup heavy cream
2 tsp. espresso powder* (instant coffee also works, but is milder than the espresso powder)
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
generous pinch of salt (Kosher is fine)
2 tsp. vanilla extract, optional
12 oz. chocolate** (chocolate chips are fine)
Line an 8×8″ dish with aluminum foil and spray lightly with nonstick cooking spray. Set aside.
Combine all ingredients except for the chocolate in a 2 or 3 quart heavy-bottomed saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly. Do not exceed medium heat! To do so would cause the mixture to overcook and become grainy, in turn causing the chocolate to seize and become a clumpy mess.
When the mixture reaches a point halfway between a simmer and a boil (if you stop stirring, bubbles should come to the surface within less than 2 seconds), set a timer for five minutes. Keep stirring constantly for the next five minutes while the mixture gradually reaches a rolling boil. The syrup will darken and thicken, cooking down to about 3/4 of its former volume. Once the five minutes are up, remove syrup from heat and immediately add the chocolate. Stir until the chocolate is completely melted and thoroughly incorporated with the syrup, with no streaks remaining.
Pour the fudge into the prepared dish, cover, and refrigerate until set, about 3 – 4 hours. Slice into 1″ squares. To get neat squares, dip knife in hot water and wipe dry between slices. This takes a little more time, but the results are much cleaner and prettier.
Store in an airtight container at room temperature, separating layers of fudge with waxed paper so that the layers of fudge don’t stick together.
**This recipe doesn’t boost the sweetness of the chocolate you use, so feel free to use milk chocolate. If you choose to use semisweet or dark chocolate, keep in mind that the finished fudge will retain the dark character of the chocolate.
*Use a full TBS of espresso powder or instant coffee for a stronger coffee flavour.
Source: Adapted from Annie’s Eats