Monday, March 14, 2011

No-Bake Monday: Cayenne and Sea Salt Fudge

Ka-kow! Or should I say, cacao? My friend Lysa from Smile Belly reminded me that fudge is awesome and easy to make. She had a recipe for cinnamon fudge that I adapted for this post. She just looked too cute holding a tray of fudge, and the fudge looked too yummy, and anything I can put sweetened condensed milk in I am down for (see the last no-bake monday recipe).

- Butter, for greasing the pan
- 1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
- 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 pound (about 2 cups) bittersweet (60 percent cacao) chocolate chips (recommended: Ghiradelli)
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces, at room temperature
- Kosher or sea salt for sprinkling

-Grease your pan and line with parchment paper so the paper hangs over the edges. 8x8 is what Lysa used and I used a 7x14, probably also a 9x9 or any other similarly sized pan would work. The bigger pan you use the thinner your layer of fudge will be.
-Combine your ingredients in a double boiler, or you can use a glass or stainless steel bowl over a pot of just barely simmering water. Sir your ingredients together until the chocolate is totally melted (this will take 5 or 10 minutes, be patient)
-Pour the fudge mixture into your pan and smooth out with a spatula. Sprinkle the top with salt if desired (it's still tasty without it, but I love the chocolate-salt combination). Refrigerate for a few hours until firm.
-When fudge is ready, run a warm knife (put it under hot water) around the edge of the pan to loosen the fudge. Pop the fudge out of the pan onto a cutting board and remove the parchment paper. Cut into squares and serve! Keep the extra in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

What I really like about this fudge is that you don't notice the cayenne flavor at first. It sneaks up on you like it should so you are first hit with slightly salty chocolate flavor, then it's sweet, then it's spicy. Yes!

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