Fudge is a smooth, sweet confection often made with melted chocolate chips and marshmallow crème as the main ingredients. It typically must be cooked to a certain temperature and may require the use of a candy thermometer to get it just right. Peanut butter fudge is a similar candy, but instead of using chocolate chips the main ingredients are sugar and peanut butter. It is also usually much easier to make than traditional fudge, yet retains many of the same qualities.
There are a number of different variations on the peanut butter fudge recipe, but the basic ingredients are simple. It consists mostly of butter, sugar and peanut butter, with very little else. Most recipes also call for a bit of vanilla and perhaps even a tiny bit of salt. The quantity and types of sugars used may also vary, though powdered sugar, also known as confectioner’s sugar, is virtually always an important ingredient.
Despite the fact that chocolate-flavored fudge is highly popular, and peanut butter fudge is well known, there are many other types of fudge as well. Various flavorings and other ingredients can be added to produce vanilla, fruit, mint and more. There is a wide variety of ingredients that may be used to flavor fudge, whether on its own or combined as a secondary flavoring along with chocolate.
Making fudge is not difficult, but if it is overcooked or undercooked it may not have the proper texture. Candy makers typically use a candy thermometer to get fudge to just the right point; this is called the soft ball stage because it forms into soft balls when cooled. This point is normally when the mixture is between 235° F (113° C) and 240° F (116° C). Anything outside that range does not give the fudge the proper consistency.
One of the advantages of peanut butter fudge is that most recipes for this variety do not require reaching an exact cooking temperature. Much of the time a candy thermometer is not necessary to produce excellent peanut butter fudge. The batch will set up under almost all conditions as long as it has been blended well. Some people make sweets to give to friends and family members around the holidays, including fudge. Peanut butter fudge is a popular favorite and may be added to a box or plate of treats.