I always preferred the slightly crisp fudge made by my mother's friend, which turned up on our doorstep each year on my mother's birthday (which I usually ate most of). Someday I will get the recipe for that fudge. However, today I am sharing a new personal favourite fudge recipe: Dark Chocolate Coconut Fudge.
I often make an attempt at buying the store-bought fudge. But nearly every time I pick some up and head to the cash register of a shop, I find myself changing my mind, and putting the fudge back on the shelf before I leave the store. Why? I have issues with the ingredients.
In addition to the insane amount of icing sugar added to most store-bought fudge recipes and artificial vanilla flavouring, there is one ingredient that I will not tolerate in my food: hydrogenated vegetable oil. Whether it is partially hydrogenated or fully hydrogenated, or cottonseed, soybean, palm or kernel, I don't want it. The process that the oil has gone through results in a thicker oil that makes it harder for our hearts to pump blood through our systems (ref). It increases our LDL (bad cholesterol) and decreases our HDL (good cholesterol) (ref). So until food (and fudge) manufacturers get the picture and take it out, I will make my own fudge from scratch.
This recipe has all the deliciousness of a dark chocolate fudge with a nice fun crunch, but is much more natural than the store-bought stuff from touristy ice cream shops. Sure, there is some fat in it, but just try to remember that portion control is important. This fudge freezes well, so you can cut it into pieces, seal in plastic wrap and freeze them individually. Thaw and enjoy a piece every day!
Recipe: Dark Chocolate Coconut Fudge with a Crunch
- For the fudge:
- 3.5 oz (100g) coconut oil
- 12 oz (340g) of 70% dark chocolate, chopped
- 1/2 cup (50g or 118 ml in a measuring cup) coconut sugar (you can use regular sugar, if you like)
- 1 cup (30g or 237 ml in a measuring cup) of crisped rice cereal (I used the brown rice kind), or chopped, roasted almonds if you prefer
- The scraping of 1 vanilla bean or 1/4 tsp of ground vanilla bean (not the liquid extract) - optional
For the topping:
- 1/4 cup (25g) of unsweetened medium coconut flakes (again, use sweetened if you like)
- 2 oz (57g) of dark or semi-sweet chocolate shaved, or finely chopped
1. Line a loaf pan (about 9" x 5") with plastic wrap (see below for tips on other pans that you can use) and set the pan aside.
3. Melt the chocolate in one of two ways:
a) Over a double boiler (place your chocolate bowl over 1" of nearly simmering water in a small pot of water). Stir the chocolate with a dry wooden spoon. Ensure that no water gets in the chocolate, not even a drop and that your tools are dry before you start. Stir until melted to a temperature of 120 degrees Fahrenheit.
b) Melt the chocolate in the microwave for 2 minutes on half power (in glass, ceramic or plastic bowl only). Remove, stir with a wooden spoon and then microwave for 5 to 10 second intervals until entirely melted to a temperature of 120 degrees Fahrenheit.
5. Once your chocolate is 120 degrees F, you need to temper it. The simplest method is to remove it from the heat and immediately toss in the 2 ounces of chopped chocolate that you had reserved. Stir until smooth. Continue to reduce the temperature further by either placing over a bowl of ice water (or stirring the bowl of chocolate while it rests on the shelf inside your fridge - but this takes longer). Cool to about 82 to 86 degrees.
7. Sprinkle the coconut topping over the fudge and gently press into the fudge so it sticks.
8. Place the fudge in the refrigerator for 1/2 hour to set. Remove from the fridge and gently remove from the pan by holding the sides of the plastic wrap to lift up and out onto a cutting board. Cut into 12 large square pieces or 24 small pieces.
Simply Baked disposable paper baking pans and gave it as a gift to someone. If you pour the fudge a few minutes earlier (i.e. before it thickens) you can also pour it directly into cupcake papers.
Don't want to temper chocolate or don't have a digital thermometer? Try the Coconut Fudge recipe that I reviewed yesterday! It is silky smooth, but just be sure to check my tips and tricks for making it easier to handle. Find the review and link to the recipe here: http://ultimatechocolateblog.blogspot.ca/2015/02/coconut-fudge-recipe-good-recipe.html.