Thursday, December 21, 2017

OH, FUDGE! Recipes

The one Christmas tradition we have in our family is making fudge.  My mother taught me how to make fudge.  The recipe we used was from the newspaper, back in the 1950's, that said it was the See's Fudge recipe.  I don't believe it really was.  

I've tweaked the recipe a little, and added lots of different flavors.  We've delivered them to family and friends today.  ...still have a few to deliver.  Here's a picture of the 5 flavors we made this year:  Cookies and Cream, Butterscotch, Peppermint Crunch, S'mores and Salted Carmel Chocolate.

OH, FUDGE! on a Big, Easy Dresden.
Here's my recipe:



  • Use a BIG, non-stick pan (6 quarts or larger).  Marshmallows expand when heated, and you don’t want hot candy to boil over.

  • To prevent boiling over, grease the top 1” of the inside of your pan with butter.

  • Always use a candy thermometer.  Fudge will not be stiff enough unless it reaches 245° F.  Anything less than 245° and you will have “spoon fudge.”

  • Choose a candy thermometer that has a sealed, glass top.  One with a rubber stopper in the top will not survive many dips in a pan of hot fudge.

  • Use a wooden spoon while boiling the fudge.  A metal spoon will give the fudge a metallic taste. 

  • I like a wooden spoon with a hole through the middle of it’s bowl, and a slightly rounded surface on the bottom edge.

  • Turn the heat down and stir more quickly and thoroughly to
  • prevent brown scorch streaks.  This is especially important when using white chocolate.  Scrape the bottom and sides of a non-stick pan, but NOT a regular pan.

  • When adding “stir-ins,” (nuts, marshmallows, candies, etc.), place them in the pan your finished fudge will cool in.  Stir them into the fudge as it is poured into the pan.

  • There will be more than 1 1/3 cup of milk in your can of     evaporated milk.  Don’t use the extra.  Your fudge will take longer to cook, and may become crystal-y.

Basic Chocolate Fudge
(measurements also given for (1/2 batch) and [1/4 batch]

Put the following into a heat-resistant bowl:

  • Chocolate chips — a 10-12 oz bag or 2 cups (1 cup), [1/2 cup]  You may use milk, semi-sweet or dark chocolate chips.
  • Butter, cut up — 1 cup (1/2 cup), [1/4 cup] — margarine may be used, but makes a darker colored fudge.
  • Vanilla — 2 tsp. (1 tsp.), [1/2 tsp.]
Put the following in a large sauce pan:
  • Sugar — 4 cups (2 cups), [1 cup]
  • Evaporated milk — 1 1/3 cup (2/3 cup), [1/3 cup]
  • Marshmallows — 28 large or 4 cups mini marshmallows (14 large or 2 cups), [7 large or 2 cups]

Prepare a 9” X 13” pan (8” X 8”), [8” X 4” loaf pan] by spraying with vegetable spray or greasing with butter.  Place “stir-ins” in this pan.  

Heat ingredients in large pan to boiling, stirring constantly.  Continue boiling and stirring until the candy thermometer reads 245°F (about 8-10 minutes).  

Immediately pour hot ingredients into heat resistant bowl with other ingredients.  Beat with a mixer until thickened and butter is mixed in.  

Pour into pan and spread evenly.  

Let cool and cut into squares before you refrigerate it.  Yield: about 50 (25), [12] pieces.


Make changes in the above recipe to make all of the other recipes in the booklet.

White Chocolate Fudge:  Replace the chocolate chips with white chocolate chips.

Rocky Road Fudge:  Make Basic Chocolate Fudge and stir in 1 cup (1/2 cup), [1/4 cup] mini marshmallows, 1/2 cup (1/4 cup), [2 Tbsp.], mini chocolate chips, and 1/2 cup (1/4 cup), [2 Tbsp.] chopped pecans or walnuts.

Peppermint Crunch Fudge:  Replace chocolate chips with white chocolate chips.  Stir in 1 cup (1/2 cup), [1/4 cup] crushed candy cane.

Gourmet Hazelnut Fudge:  add 1/2 cup (1/4 cup), [2 Tbsp.]
hazelnut paste to ingredients in heat resistant bowl.

Peanut Butter Fudge:  Replace the chocolate chips with
peanut butter chips.

Chocolate / Peanut Butter Fudge:  Use half chocolate chips and half peanut butter chips.  Top with or stir in 1 cup (1/2 cup), [1/4 cup] Reeses Pieces candies.

Layered Chocolate / Peanut Butter Fudge:  Make 1/2 batch of peanut butter fudge and pour it into the pan.  Let cool.  Then make  a 1/2 batch of chocolate fudge and pour it over the peanut butter fudge.  Top with, or stir in 1 cup (1/2 cup), [1/4 cup] Reeses Pieces candies.

Cookies and Cream Fudge:  Stir in 1 cup (1/2 cup), [1/4 cup] broken Oreo cookies into White Chocolate Fudge.  For best results, do not crush the cookie, break them into 1/4” to 1/2” pieces.

Butterscotch Fudge:  Replace chocolate chips with butterscotch chips.

M & M Fudge:  Make Basic Chocolate or White Chocolate Fudge.  Stir in 1 cup (1/2 cup), [1/4 cup] M & M candies.

S’mores Fudge:  Make Basic Chocolate Fudge, and stir-in broken graham crackers, mini marshmallows and mini dark
chocolate chips.

Salted Carmel Fudge:  Make basic chocolate fudge and stir in caramel bits.  Sprinkle with sea salt or pretzel salt.
Mint Fudge:  Replace chocolate chips with white chocolate chips.  Replace vanilla with mint extract.  Add green food coloring.  Or just replace chocolate chips with mint chips.

Chocolate / Mint Fudge:  Make basic chocolate fudge.  Replace the vanilla with double the amount of mint extract.

Grasshopper Fudge:  Make 1/2 batch of Basic Chocolate Fudge and pour it into the pan.  Let cool.  Make 1/2 batch of Mint Fudge and pour it over the chocolate fudge.  Top warm fudge with mini chocolate chips.

Strawberry Fudge:  Replace chocolate chips with white chocolate chips.  Replace vanilla with double the amount of strawberry extract and add red food coloring.

Chocolate / Strawberry Fudge:  Use chocolate chips. 
Replace vanilla with double the amount of strawberry extract.

Layered Chocolate / Strawberry Fudge:  Make a 1/2 batch of chocolate fudge and pour it into the pan.  Let cool.  Then make a 1/2 batch of strawberry fudge, and pour it over the chocolate fudge.

Fruity Rainbow Fudge:  Replace chocolate chips with white chocolate chips.  Replace regular marshmallows with mini fruit flavored marshmallows, divided by colors.  Make four separate 1/4 batches, each using different colored marshmallows.  You may add food coloring while cooking to enhance the colors.  Pour each batch into the pan in layers.  Allow each layer to cool before adding the next layer.  Start with green on the bottom, then yellow, orange, and pink.  Push a “Skittles” candy into the top of each square before the top layer cools.

Truffles:  Cut your favorite fudge into 1/2 size squares.  Dip in melted chocolate.  Let cool.

Cookie Cutter Shaped Fudge:  Let your favorite fudge cool just enough that it can be handled, yet will hold a shape.  Put a ball of warm fudge between 2 pieces of waxed paper.  Press it with your hands until it is about 1/2” thick.  Use small cookie cutters that are open on the back, so the fudge can push up and through them.  Decorate with colored frostings, sprinkles, or candy pieces.  Make the leftover fudge into “Snowballs” (see page 12).  Soften in microwave if needed.

Snowballs:  Roll your favorite fudge into a ball, and then roll it in chopped nuts or candy sprinkles.  You may want to add a nut or candy in the center, but work quickly!  Soften in the microwave if needed.

Tropical Snowballs:  Make banana, coconut or pineapple
flavored fudge by replacing the chocolate chips with white
chocolate chips and adding 2 tsp. (1 tsp.) [1/2 tsp.] banana
coconut or pineapple extract with the vanilla.  Roll fudge into a ball with a macadamia nut in the center.  Then roll it in coconut.  Soften in the microwave if needed.

Other Fudgey Ideas

• Use any flavored extract in place of the vanilla.
• Use any flavored chocolate chips or carob disks.
• Stir-in your favorite goodies:  broken cookies, broken candy
      bars, dried fruit, cake, pretzels, nuts, caramel bits, etc.

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Witches Night Out

I've been out with the neighborhood ladies at the annual Witches Night Out.  We went to Kneaders to have dinner and desserts.  And I won a lovely, metal spider in a web, that I can hang on my front porch.
I had to get out my special hat and wart, just for this special occasion.

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Denim Stars Template

I have some exciting news!  My Denim Stars Acrylic Template is now available in an 8-inch size.  A bigger template means less work.  My patterns on Etsy and Craftsy will now have instructions for using the 8-inch template to make 3 quilt sizes.


You can purchase the 8-inch template from Etsy at this link

Here's a picture of the Denim Stars Quilt.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

We're Getting A HandiQuilter!!!

Our HandiQuilter has been ordered!  YEA!!!  
We're getting the 12 ft. Avante'.  

The Guys have been helping me get the space ready.  Karl figured out how to re-arrange things so the HQ could fit on the only wall in the house that's long enough for it.  He got David and Scott to help him moved the TV and re-wired it to a different side of the room.  They packed up stuff and took stuff to the thrift store.  And Scott got the old carpet cleaner going and cleaned the carpet.

We got a 144" curtain rod and hung it up high, and added rings with little clips on them, for hanging quilts.  Then we got a 4 ft X 8 ft. piece of Styrofoam for the design wall, which I covered with gridded flannel.  So, here's what our space looks like...

The plan is to involve the whole family to make videos of my new idea for quilting (it's still top secret!). We've got a camera that will shoot the video, and The Guys can take care of all the computer stuff -- edit the videos and get them on YouTube.  I'll need a few weeks to get good with the new machine and develop the system.  But keep your eye on Quilted Sunshine!  We'll be on YouTube soon!

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Have We Got Snow!

The snow has been amazing this past month!  The weather man said we've got 20" with the last two storms.  And 60" total for the season.  A retired school librarian was in my class on Friday evening and said that in all her time of working at the school, they only had 3 snow days in 41 years.  This past month, we've had 3 snow days.  The first one was due to below zero temperatures.  It was -23 degrees at the Logan airport a couple weeks ago.  Here's some pictures.

Second Week of January -- 17" of snow

Backyard -- check the fence
Animals on the Porch -- bird, cat (or small dog) and deer 
The Guys have been busy keeping the driveway clear.  The road in our neighborhood has been pretty bad.  But a couple good neighbors have helped a lot with their snow blowers.

Thursday, June 30, 2016

Honored Pioneer Sampler Quilt Pattern

My friend and co-worker, Amy Maxfield, designed this beautiful quilt after the LDS Hymn, "They the Builders of the Nation” (Hymn #36). 

She asked me to turn it into a pattern.  So I wrote it out and created the diagrams, and put it into a 46 page pattern.  She then asked me to make it available on Craftsy and Etsy as a pdf download.  It's going on TODAY!  Just in time for The Fourth of July and Pioneer Day!

Here's the Craftsy link.
And here's the Etsy link.

And here are some close-ups of the quilt:

There are 20 different blocks, plus the borders and border applique.   Here's Amy's introduction to the pattern:

"I have always loved and marveled at Pioneer stories and histories. I've wondered if I could have been a pioneer who never complained and survived the ordeal with an abiding love of God and faith to move forward. Pioneer Day, celebrated on July 24th in Utah, has long been a favorite holiday. As a young girl, I would go to my Swedish Grandmother's house in downtown Salt Lake City, Utah and walk to the parade route on Main Street near Liberty Park. Every year I'd sit on a quilt laid out near the street. I was there with my cousins, aunts, and uncles eating popsicles and cheering for the marching bands, the floats, and the horses. I see it clearly in my mind and what a happy memory it is. Still, I long to go to the parade every year to celebrate Pioneer Day!

This quilt is designed after the LDS Hymn "They the Builders of the Nation” (Hymn #36). Many years ago I drafted an idea for a quilt to go along with the words of this hymn. Two years ago I decided it was time to make it come to life. I appreciate Annette Rose, a co-worker, who is very talented at computer generated pattern making and also for Joye Hansen who willingly took the time to test the pattern.  Cover photo taken by Leisa Firth, with my appreciation. 

Each block represents some part of pioneer life: log cabins, farmer’s daughter, school house, wagon wheels, bow ties representing pioneer men, and churn-dash for the women. The flower pot represents the "desert blossoming as a rose" as stated by Brigham Young, the first governor of the state of Utah and second Prophet of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. The honey bee block represents Utah, "The Beehive State.” The flower in the border is symbolic of the many graves along the trail. I intended for some petals to have fallen to the ground representing loss of life, but if you repeat the common phrase “he loves me; he loves me not” as you count the petals, you will notice that it ends with "he loves me!" To me that represents the knowledge that God loves us and watches over us. That is my experience and continues to be my abiding faith!"


Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Row By Row Experience 2016

The Row By Row Experience theme for this year is "Home Sweet Home."  I work at a shop in Cache County, Utah.  So our license plate and row include the "Cache" reference.  Here's our row (we went vertical this year) and license plate.

We look forward to meeting lots of new quilters through the Summer!