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LaMiaCucina

Ideas for grainy fudge

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Hello everyone,

 

Well, that'll teach me to make more than I should!

 

I made a large batch of fudge to give as gifts, but the sugar didn't melt properly.  It is grainy. 

 

I put a test batch into a pan with evaporated milk and cream, heated it to melt the crystals, and brought it to 234.  It is no longer grainy, but far too soft to "serve" as is.  

 

Tried a second, but the sugar didn't melt.  I threw it out.


I still have quite a bit left.

 

I would gladly give up on the "candy" aspect and do something else with it.  I just hate to waste all of that time and money.

 

I should also add that we moved last year.  I've heard that sugar is different for some parts, so perhaps that is part of the problem.

 

Any ideas?

 

Thanks!

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It sounds like you agitated the fudge a bit too early, that will generate large crystals. I can't think of too much to be done with it aside from adding cream like you did to make a chocolate sauce or something. Usually at this point I cut my losses before I spend too much time making something I didn't really have a need for in the first place. Also, a large batch can be tricky. How are you cooling the syrup before agitating it? It's easy for it to be just a bit warmer then it should be on a large batch. 

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Anybody remember the old fudge recipe from the Hershey's cocoa can that turned out somewhat grainy/sugary in texture? I've never made it, my stepmom used to make it when I was a kid, so I don't actually know if the texture was a characteristic of the recipe or the way she made it. Either way, I have to confess I actually kinda liked that texture and sometimes find myself mildly disappointed with creamy smooth fudge. 

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It's kinda like wrestling a gorilla... you don't stop when you're tired, you stop when the gorilla is tired.

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Thank you all.

 

I did reheat two different batches. They are smooth now but far too soft for fudge - they won't hold their shape.

At this point, I'm probably better off turning them into a syrup to pour over ice cream or use in milk.  


Do you think I can just heat and add cream?


 

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17 minutes ago, LaMiaCucina said:

Thank you all.

 

I did reheat two different batches. They are smooth now but far too soft for fudge - they won't hold their shape.

At this point, I'm probably better off turning them into a syrup to pour over ice cream or use in milk.  


Do you think I can just heat and add cream?


 

Yup

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2 hours ago, Tri2Cook said:

Anybody remember the old fudge recipe from the Hershey's cocoa can that turned out somewhat grainy/sugary in texture? I've never made it, my stepmom used to make it when I was a kid, so I don't actually know if the texture was a characteristic of the recipe or the way she made it. Either way, I have to confess I actually kinda liked that texture and sometimes find myself mildly disappointed with creamy smooth fudge. 

Yup, that is the way my husband's family likes their fudge, grainy. My MIL can't always get it to go grainy but when she does, that is their favorite.

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18 hours ago, curls said:

Yup, that is the way my husband's family likes their fudge, grainy. My MIL can't always get it to go grainy but when she does, that is their favorite.

😖That is EXACTLY how Mr. Kim's family likes it, too.  I don't care for it at all and the first time that Jessica tasted it (she was about 5), she said, "Momma, there's something wrong with this fudge!"  I shushed her and said I knew, but that was how they liked it.  LOL. I is NOT easy to make.  I've got their recipe and directions and have given it a try a few times.  Never any success, though I did come up with Tootsie Rolls one time.  

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I too have been making fudge the past couple of months for a few clients and have a few thoughts on it.

 

Here in the South, it seems more commonly, people grew up with the crystallized type instead of the smooth and creamy fudge.  When I first started making the chocolate version, I made it by taking it to 236°F,  letting it cool for about 20 minutes and then agitating it in a mixer for a few minutes until smooth and then let it set up the rest of the way.  It tasted and felt weird to me since growing up, I had only had the crystallized type.  It was not bad, just took some getting used to (kept reminding me of Tootsie Rolls).  Since then, I have gone to the crystallized version since it seems more in line with what most customers expect here.

 

Secondly, I definitely do not use 234°F as the max temperature since so many things can go wrong with it.  I shoot for 236-238°F since my thermometer could maybe be off a degree, or it my pan might not be uniform in temperature (I place the probe in the middle of the pot off the bottom, but my stove definitely heats higher on the upper left side than the lower right.  If it is rainy, damp, and/or humid, I usually take it up to 240°F since the extra moisture can be a pain.

 

234°F is the very bottom end for fudge or it is at least where I live.  You have a range of 234-241°F to work with, so I do not trust the lower end of the range in case something is off.  My first batch of fudge, I took to 234°F and I had the same problem you are describing.  One other time, something was off and it set up too loose to cut up so I set it aside wrapped in parchment paper until I had a chance to reheat it to the right temp.  I put it in a cool, dark location and had no time to fool with it for about 2 weeks.  In that time, it kept crystallizing and when I went to redo it, it was actually a perfect consistency by that point.

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