Since our first batch of treacle fudge didn’t go so great, we of course had to try again! First, though, we had to do our research, figure out what had gone wrong, and develop a better recipe that would set and taste more treacly.
We consulted with the following sources and recipes:
1. Important: check to make sure your candy thermometer is accurate by boiling water and making sure the thermometer reads 212F or 100C. Mine, for example, was a whole 9 degrees Celsius off, which is pretty significant — that’s probably why our last batch was a runny fudge fail.
2. Line a baking pan (it’s better to use glass rather than metal, to keep it from cooling too quickly) with plastic wrap, leaving some overhang on all sides.
3. The boiling process is the most important part of making fudge. Bring heavy cream, sugar, and treacle to a boil in a medium saucepan, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon. (Some recipes call for the butter to be boiled too, but we read on the T.P. Skaarup tribute site that this can result in poorly dissolved sugar and can mess up the soft ball test.) Reduce heat to medium and sustain a rolling boil (a rolling boil is a boil that can’t be stirred down), stirring frequently until it registers 114C or 237 degrees on the candy thermometer. Don’t scrape the sides to avoid adding crystals into the fudge.
4. Crucial: test the mixture by dropping a small amount into cold water and rolling it between your fingers. If it rolls into a ball that can be flattened, it’s ready. If it dissolves, it’s not boiled enough. If the ball resists flattening, it’s overdone — you should add a little milk, mix it in, and start again.
5. Remove from heat. Add butter and let it melt across the top. Once it’s cooled a bit, add salt.
6. Mix by hand with a wooden spoon until it’s smooth and creamy, and has lost its shine. This took FOREVER. It’s nice to have a partner so you can take turns — once it starts thickening, it’s tiring to mix for a long time.
7. Pour the mixture into the pan when it’s still just pourable. Don’t scrape the sides of the pot too much.