Monday, December 24, 2012

Peanut Butter Fudge Debacle 2012

From a time since before I was born I reckon, my Grandfather made the most delicious peanut butter fudge.  It was always a highlight during the holiday season, but especially at Christmas.  There were countless tins around my grandparent's home filled with peanut butter fudge.  It's been 2 and 1/2 years since we said our goodbyes to my grandfather - and it was longer than that since he made his home-made fudge at home.  While others could make fudge, nothing tastes like his.  Enter two days ago - As I'm flipping through a recipe book that I have (I rarely use it, but do open it almost every time I make my Granny's mac & cheese), I see a tiny piece of paper with his initials at the bottom.  I realize it's his recipe for Peanut Butter fudge. 

I say that it would be nice to make some peanut butter fudge and off we went to the store to pick up a few key ingredients.  We came home and began to work together to make this very special holiday treat.  As my wonderful husband was putting 3 ingredients into a pot, I reminded him the recipe called for a large pot.  I'm assured that the pot he being used was fine.   I work on my 3 ingredients and scoop out a good portion of one jar of peanut butter.  he began to cook - and watch the temperature on the candy thermometer rise - and as the temperature rised higher - so did the 3 ingredients being constantly stirred.  He got nervous about the ingredients possibly coming out of the pot - so about 14 degrees too soon the pot was removed from the stove. 

He mixes his 3 ingredients with my 3 ingredients and began to pour into a glass 9x13 baking dish.  It looked a little thin, but it smelled fantastic!  We walked away waiting for it to harden and later that night I discovered it was above the dish washer (which was running) - aka a hot spot. So I moved it to a cooler spot on the counter and when I woke the next morn discovered that it was not hard at all.  It was like Peanut Butter Spoon Fudge.  Feeling my disappointment, my husband began to make another batch.  The first batch was "too thin." 

Well the second batch - we pulled out the largest pot we had.  This was not going to be a mistake we were going to make again.  I pulled out a jar of  peanut butter and with my calculations from the day before pulled out 6 tablespoons of  PB and then used the rest of the jar.  We worked together and got the pot of ingredients to the right temp and then mixed the two together.  Something wasn't right.  It was "too thick."  Back to the recipe -  UH OH!  I had messed up in the first batch and didn't realize it so when I made the 2nd batch, I didn't double check.  Instead of using 3 cups of PB, I had used 4 cups!  

We were feeling a little bit like Goldilocks - 1st batch was too thin, 2nd batch was too thick - we wondered if we would ever get it right.  At this point we weren't going to let the fudge get the best of us.  SO we began again double checking every single measure and every single ingredient - FINALLY - it poured right - and we waited.  The third batch was JUST RIGHT!  And - I smiled as I bit into the first piece - it tasted just like my my Granddaddy's - *almost* :)    We got two thumbs up from my family too!

I miss you Granny & Granddaddy - every single day, but on days where we try to recreate your master pieces - even more especially so.

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