I’ve loved reading through all the stories and recipes shared this month. I knew as soon as it was decided we were going swap favorite family recipes which one I’d share — my Mema’s fudge. My mom makes it every year and I do also. My aunts and uncles and old family friends all agree it is the best fudge.
Every year a friend or two will attempt to persuade me to try their recipe with marshmallow cream made in the microwave. Every year I smile and decline. I love the whole process of candy-making — waiting for the perfect humidity, watching the thermometer reach just the right temperature, beating the shiny liquid until it turns into the creamy, rich goodness that is my Mema’s fudge.
My daughter and I make the third and fourth generations of females to carefully measure the sugar and Hershey’s cocoa. There’s something captivating about knowing my grandmother measured these same ingredients into her heavy pan and stood by her stand mixer waiting for the shine to fade from the hot fudge.
My grandmother passed away just after my tenth birthday. My sweet daughter never knew this beautiful woman who drank Coca Cola from bottles and made the very best tuna fish sandwiches. So we make fudge and talk about family and remember those who’ve passed before us. And the memories become as familiar as the first taste of fudge each year — rich and sweet.
How do you remember friends and family who have passed during the holiday season?
3 cups sugar
2/3 cup cocoa
1/8 teaspoon salt
1-1/2 cups milk
1 stick butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
In a heavy saucepan, combine sugar, cocoa, and salt. Stir in milk. Cook over medium heat stirring constantly to a full boil. Boil without stirring to soft ball stage. Remove pan from heat. Add butter and vanilla. Beat until thick but not shiny. Spread fudge into wax paper-lined cookie sheet and let cook. Cut into squares and store in airtight container.
Just for fun, here is a video from 1957 of my mom and her siblings making fudge with my Mema. My mom is the cute little girl on the chair in the corner. There’s no sound and it’s not great quality video but it sure is precious to me.
21 Days of Favorite Family Recipes
Day 1: Sunbonnet Cake with Vannetta Chapman
Day 2: Bacon, Egg, & Cheese Casserole with Amy Clipston
Day 3: Sugar Cookies with Lisa Bogart
Day 4: Cheesecake with Carey Bailey
Day 5: Instant Russian Tea with Marty Walden
Day 6: Cranberry Bread with Marie Dittmore
Day 7: Gluten-Free Coffee Cake with Elizabeth Byler Younts
Day 8: Hot Drink Bar by Gina Smith
Day 9: Turkey Stew with Amy Lillard
Day 10: Chicomando with Christy Fitzwater
Day 11: Grandma’s Apple Pie with Leslie Gould
Day 12: Chess Pie with Angela Correll
Day 13: Molasses Sugar Cookies with Melissa K. Norris
Day 14: Eatmore Bars with Valerie Comer
Day 15: Spiced Pecans with Lisa Bogart
Day 16: White Chicken Chili with Caitlin Wilson