Thursday, December 22, 2016

Brown Sugar Fudge (Penuche)

Hello, my friends! Ruthy here, "The Yank" and all of us up here in the cold, snowy North are wishin' all o' youse a very Merry Christmas!
A baby shepherd has been sighted! :) This is Finn, when he was one year old... He didn't quite make it into the Living Nativity picture. We decided he was a wandering shepherd... a nomad, mayhap?

I love fudge. I love stopping by places with signs bearing "FRESH FUDGE" because fudge-lovers know what that means: Old fudge just isn't as good.

So the trick with fudge (to me, anywho!!!) is to develop recipes that taste great... and keep tasting great!

This one is perfection. I used Maple Syrup with mine, but if you wanted a more "brown sugar" taste you could use molasses and just cut the amount in half because molasses is a much stronger flavor.

Basically I took the recipe from the small Fluff jar and played with it. Most often I find that if you have a good basic beginning, changing the elements might change the taste, but keep the quality. So that was the goal.

1 1/2 cups brown sugar
1 cup white sugar
6 oz. evaporated milk (half a big can) Or if you're using a 5 oz can, add cream or whole milk to go to six ounces. That silly little extra ounce makes the fudge creamier and stay creamier longer. 
4 TBSP (1/2 stick) butter
3/4 tsp. salt
1 jar Marshmallow Fluff
1/2 cup real Maple Syrup (or use 2 TBSP molasses instead)
1 12 oz bag white chocolate chips
1 cup chopped nuts (if desired)

In large saucepan combine both sugars, milk, butter, salt, Fluff, syrup or molasses. Heat to boiling, stirring constantly. (I like a medium-medium/high heat.) Don't worry if marshmallow gets golden... it's supposed to! Make sure you're stirring all edges of pan. 

Cook to soft ball stage (235° to 238 ° on a candy thermometer) 

To kick the thermometer to the curb, test fudge by drizzling a spoon full of fudge into a coffee cup half-filled with cold water. If the fudge schlurps together into a ball, but flattens when you remove it from cup, you're at "soft ball" stage! Go you!!!!

Add in the 12 oz of white chocolate chips and nuts if desired. Stir until all is melted together and pour into foil lined 13" x 9" pan. Cool completely before cutting.

This fudge is amazing. I keep it sealed in a cool room or in the freezer and it loses no quality even two weeks later.

Air "sugars" fudge, making it crusty and taste stale. Keep it sealed and cool.... and while refrigerators are great tools, if your kid leaves the fudge open in the fridge while helping themselves to a piece, then the fudge takes on the smell of the fridge...

So I usually keep it out of the fridge for my own sake because yes... I love fudge!!! This is two weeks later and as sweet and creamy as the day I made it... 

And here's a little catch-up from the farm! Punch and cookies for the kids who call this home before and after school:

And remember the living room floor project? Well, here are the before and after shots!

Hey, in keeping with our 12 Treats of Christmas, I have a copy of this beautiful historical collection "Cowboy Christmas Homecoming".... I had the pleasure of working on this with Mary Connealy, Julie Lessman and Anna Schmidt, and what a good time that was! Four historical novellas in one sweet book! 

And when you love cowboys like I do.... :) Going back in history with a cowboy or two was a natural thing to do!

They've weathered a lot worse than winter. For widow June Harper, another cold front is about to hit. Most call him Hugh. She'd call him Scrooge, except as the man ensures her needs are met, June can't help but wonder how to meet the needs of his heart.

Netty Lewis can take care of herself, has for a while now. Some hired help over the holidays doesn't change that. And even if Roy does take care of her, that doesn't mean he cares for her or that he'll stay past Christmas.

Pastor Colton McCabe is having the opposite problem. He's not sure he'll make it through the holidays with his new housekeeper. Grace can't seem to do anything right but love. Perhaps being a homekeeper will earn her a permanent residence in his heart.

And no one longs for a home more than Connie Lancaster. She's determined to return to St. Louis, and no cowboy can change her mind. But if Isaac can change her heart, maybe Connie will see the homecoming she's been waiting for isn't to a place but a person.

Leave a comment below (or if Blogger gives you a hard time, then leave a comment on my facebook page Ruth Logan Herne....) and we'll count it! 

May God bless you... May the king of all that's good and holy shine upon you and yours and may your heart be healed from any sadness or grief... And may you feel God's love rain down upon you during this beautiful holy season... and all through 2017.

Multi-published, bestselling author Ruth Logan Herne has over a million books in print, and still pinches herself each day to make sure this is real... and it appears to be!

Visit her website or friend her on facebook (Ruth Logan Herne) or swing by her blog  She loves getting to know folks!


  1. This fudge sounds amazing! I may actually try making fudge for the first time after reading this!

    Ruthy, those floors are stunning! I can't believe how gorgeous they turned out. And look at your cute doggie!

    1. Libby didn't know what to make of the floor renovation because her spot is in front of the wood stove... She was quietly confused for a few days, but now she joins me in the family room when I'm writing out there... and seems to be open to change, LOL! Didn't the floor come out great? I'm so pleased with it, and the room is CLEAN for Christmas. We all know that is a rarity around here, LOL! :) Missy, this is so easy and so delicious! In fact when my 12 hour fast is done for today (around 6:00 AM..... not that I'm counting the hours or anything!) I might just have a piece! :)

  2. This sounds like a recipe I will want to try.

    I love the picture of Finn the Wandering shepherd. It reminds me of a little boy I had in a Christmas program I directed at my church about thirteen years ago. This one shepherd kept wandering around all over the stage. All of a sudden he poked his finger in the doll's eyes and was shocked when his cousin who had the part of Mary slugged him. I was glad I had used a doll instead of a real baby. But then I got to thinking about what the real Mary's reaction would have been.

    Tonight was our Candlelight service. The Master Club sat with the teachers on one side of the auditorium. My effervescent little girl that is always so full of energy snuggled onto my lap and was soon fast asleep. I enjoyed my snuggle time with this precious little girl.

    This baker is exhausted and has filled all 34 tins with goodies so many things I wanted to make but they may have to wait until next Christmas. Although I am thinking about making a recipe or two each month and enjoy Christmas all year. I was wanting to make a cookbook of Christmas recipes. Perhaps this way I can finish the cookbook and have it ready for next year. I am taking a picture of each item as I make it so everyone can see what it looks like. I know there have been some I want to add from these 12 days of Christmas posts.

    I do hope you will have a wonderful Christmas and enjoy the time with your family.

    1. Wilani, putting together those cookbooks would be a great gift for your family! I hope you will do it. :)

    2. Wilani, what a fun project that would be! An affordable and wonderful gift for your beloveds. And the thought of doing Christmas cooking/baking all year is excellent!

    3. I am wanting to check into what it would cost to let Staples put the book together for me for gifts next Christmas. Of course I can also put it together myself but I want it to look professionally done. We'll see I just ran out of time this year.

  3. Why do I not have this novella collection? Did it just come out?

    And this fudge looks amazing! I'm a fool for fudge...

    1. This fudge is amazing. Melt in your mouth amazing! And I love the "Northern" taste of brown sugar and maple and walnuts although I think the South would argue and claim this as their own!!!

      This collection came out in October... and it's so sweet. I love that I can dabble in stories of yesteryear.... and contemporary.... and keep my brain fresh!

      See? You were an inspiration to me!!!!

    2. I would follow that cute shepherd anywhere!

    3. Karen, he's adorable, isn't he??? And he wouldn't stand with those other kids for anything... he was like ... "No, I've got this, I'm after that last sheep, peeps. Must go find him!!!"

  4. I love the pictures. The old floors look amazing! I've had this book on my wishlist since I first saw it.
    I'm confused about one do you have fudge for 2 weeks?
    I do have a serious question. Does an unopened jar of molasses go bad? I found a jar in the back of a cabinet and I know it is more than a year old.

    1. Hahahah! Andrea, I hide the baked goods in the freezer and the fudge in the unheated utility room.... and no one knows they're there except for a certain few who can sniff out sponge candy like a black lab on a pheasant! So funny!

      And don't sue me, but I can't tell you how many somewhat aged things I've used... :)

  5. Love the photos Ruthy and of course love the fudge. Anything Ruthy cooks is going to be scrumptuous. smile. Would love to drop in sometime and get a real treat. A hug too. Merry Christmas

  6. The floors turned out beautifully. Will have to try the fudge recipe . It looks so yummy. The. Picture if fun reminds me of when I was a The Children's Pastor at our church for fifteen years. I looked forward each year directing the Christmas play.the kids were so cute and they were excited to see their families in the audience watching them on stage. Merry Christmas.

    1. I love seeing kids in plays. His two older brothers were singers in their school play this week... Oh how precious! Love it!!!!!

      Deana, I'm so glad you stopped by!

  7. I need to make another batch of fudge today, and I'm going to try this! It looks fabulous!

    And that room...oh, homey and lovely!

    1. I'm in love with this room for just that reason. It invites repose... Now if one could just find time to repose, Jan!!! :)

  8. I seriously need to hunt down that marshmallow fluff since there are a few recipes I've come across here that use it. And maple flavoured fudge sounds delish.

    I can't believe you got the floors done and the furniture back in place before Christmas!!! I think you have a time bending super power -- the ability to stretch minutes so you can finish products while the rest of us remain in suspended animation. LOL

    It's snowed last night -- mild temps, tons of snow and did I care? Nope because thanks to my super slippers I could still trudge my way to the hospital for physio. Though I must admit trying to push my walker through soft snow on the roads was a killer. I need skis to replace the wheels on days like this. It was so good to get out in the fresh air. And it was the kind of sticky snow that puffs onto all the tree branches. So beautiful.

    Merry Christmas, Ruthy!

    1. Oh, Kav, I bet the snow was pretty even though it makes your travel beyond tricky! And I love the Super Slippers! GO YOU!!!!

      Dave and Seth did all the floor breakdown.... that was the big thing, pulling off subfloors and carpets, etc. And if you could see how BAD the entry looks right now (notice I didn't put pics of that up on Christmas week, LOL) you'd get a kick out of all this. But we'll fix the entry way floor after the holidays. I couldn't fit that into the time frame, so it gives us something to talk about!

  9. This fudge sounds so good....I must try this! Thanks for the recipe, Ruthy....and for sharing the pictures of the precious kiddos and your beautiful restored floor. Merry Christmas to you and your family!

    1. Thank you, Sherida!!! Merry Christmas right back to you! I loved following your escapades on the trip north.... :)

  10. Thanks for sharing the pictures of Little Finn as a wandering shepherd. So cute and adorable.
    Brown Sugar Fudge sounds delicious. So many great recipes lately but not enough time to try all of them.

    A blessed and joyous Christmas to all filled with God's gifts of peace, joy, love and hope. God bless. Safe travels to all. No white Christmas in Illinois this year.