Happy New Year! Hope 2010 is off to a great start for all of you. I began the year by doing something I've never done before - running a 5k! In a moment of temporary insanity a few months ago, I agreed to run a race with Shane today. Shane's an old pro, having completed several triathlons as well as a half-marathon last year, but I am not a runner so this was a huge challenge. I didn't train as much as I should have and I didn't do as well as I'd have liked, but I finished and, well, you've got to start somewhere, right? I'm not sure if or when I'll do my next race, but it feels good to have started the year off on a positive note!
Back in November I made some terrific fudge and when it came time to put together some treats for my mailman over the holidays I wanted to include fudge, but I needed something that could be made more quickly. I decided to give the 15-minute fudge from Cook's Illustrated a try as it was a recipe I'd had my eye on for a while. The recipe is super simple - chocolate is melted along with sweetened condensed milk (and a bit of baking soda, salt and vanilla), nuts are added and the mixture is transferred to a pan to set. If it were up to me, I'd have left the nuts out, but the recipe specifically says not to do that because the nuts are crucial to the texture. I did substitute peanuts for the walnuts, though, and also added about 1/2 cup of peanut butter chips.
So, how did it turn out? Well, it was well received by the mailman and disappeared quickly from the box of treats I sent to work with Shane so I think it was a hit! As I've mentioned before, I don't really eat nuts so I only had a few small corners of the fudge that fell off when I was cutting it into squares but I enjoyed it. The texture was drier and much less creamy than the last recipe I tried, but that wasn't a negative thing, just a difference. There's a 15-minute peanut butter fudge variation I am dying to try so hopefully I'll get to that one soon. If you'd like to try the chocolate walnut fudge, you can find the recipe here.
One more thing - there's still plenty of time to enter my giveaway. You can find more information here. Hope you'll join in the fun!