Why Did My Fudge Remain Smooth After Beating? | Ask Nigella.com (2024)

Full question

Hello, I made the Vanilla Fudge and despite whisking with electric beaters at the end the fudge was smooth and not grainy. Can you please tell me where I went wrong?

Our answer

Nigella's Vanilla Fudge is a traditional fudge recipe that is made by boiling butter, milk, condensed milk, sugar and golden syrup to soft ball stage. The fudge is then beaten as this makes the fudge slightly crumbly rather than chewy. Beating the mixture encourages the formation of small sugar crystals, which leads to the crumbly texture. The crystals may not be noticeable in themselves but the fudge mixture will thicken and turn from shiny to matte in appearance. When it sets, the fudge will be slightly crumbly when cut and should melt in the mouth.

It could be that there was an expectation of large sugar crystals rather than smaller ones. The beaten fudge will still look quite smooth and you will not notice large crystals when you eat the fudge. If the fudge is very soft and slightly chewy then it is possible that it did not quite cook to soft ball stage and next time the mixture should be cooked to a slightly higher temperature (soft ball is 112-116c/235-240F and a sugar or candy thermometer can help). Otherwise it could be that the fudge cooled too much before it was beaten. The mixture will thicken naturally as it cools and beating it enough once cooled is more difficult. Let it cool for a few moments but not for too long.

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Why Did My Fudge Remain Smooth After Beating? | Ask Nigella.com (2024)

FAQs

What makes fudge smooth? ›

For first-time candy makers: Look for recipes that call for corn syrup, marshmallows, or marshmallow crème. These ingredients prevent crystallization of sugar into large grains, so the texture of the fudge will remain smooth. Also, recipes using cream or condensed milk are less likely to curdle than regular milk.

What should fudge look like after beating? ›

The fudge is then beaten as this makes the fudge slightly crumbly rather than chewy. Beating the mixture encourages the formation of small sugar crystals, which leads to the crumbly texture. The crystals may not be noticeable in themselves but the fudge mixture will thicken and turn from shiny to matte in appearance.

How do you know when fudge is beaten enough? ›

After letting the fudge cool, it's time to beat it. It is important to stir constantly with a wooden spoon until the mixture starts to thicken and its surface starts to look dull or matte. Now is the time to stop beating and pour the fudge into a mould.

Why did my fudge not get hard? ›

The main reason is that your Fudge has not reached the optimum temperature. If your mixture only reaches 110 or 112 degrees Celsius it will always be soft. That's why we recommend investing in a sugar thermometer. Another reason your Fudge is not setting is that the ratio of liquid to sugar is too high.

What is the secret to smooth fudge that is not gritty? ›

Grainy Fudge

To avoid this issue, swirl the pan instead of stirring it with a spoon. You can use a wet pastry brush to wipe down any sugar that sticks to the sides of the pot.

How to stop fudge from going grainy? ›

Don't panic if your fudge is grainy, nothing is lost it just requires some more work. Pop the grainy fudge back into the pan along with some water and a little cream and melt the fudge back down to a liquid and re-boil it to temperature.

When to stop beating fudge? ›

Once the mixture has cooled enough, use a wooden spoon or an electric hand mixer to beat the fudge until you see the very first signs of the mixture shifting from glossy to matte. Believe yourself when you think you see them! If you over-mix the fudge it will set in your pot.

What happens if you beat fudge too soon? ›

This fudge was beaten immediately after cooking, while it was still very hot. Its crystals are so big that it has practically reverted back to a sugar state! What happened? Beating the syrup caused the formation of crystallization nuclei, anchor points to which sugar molecules attach to form crystals.

Can you over beat fudge? ›

Fudge usually behaves this way when it's not cooked to a high enough temperature (due to oversight or a faulty candy thermometer). If your fudge is tough, hard, or grainy, then you may have made one of several mistakes: You may have overcooked it, beaten it too long, or neglected to cool it to the proper temperature.

Can you fix fudge that didn't harden? ›

OPTION 3) Sieve together some powdered sugar and cocoa powder, and gradually work this into your unset fudge until it reaches the consistency of dough, then roll out and cut into squares, or shape into balls and then roll in powdered sugar (roll the balls in icing sugar, not yourself).

What to do with failed fudge? ›

My advice to you is to just pour it in a jar, call it something else delicious, and pretend you meant for it to be that way. The nice thing about my “failed” fudge is that it tastes absolutely delicious! A spoonful of the delectable treat will make you want for more.

What makes fudge firmer? ›

If your fudge fails to harden in the fridge, it means that you probably didn't cook it to the right temperature. Fudge is a candy, and that means it is extremely picky about temperature - fudge must be cooked to precisely 237–239 degrees Fahrenheit so that sugar forms the desired consistency when cooled.

Why did my fudge come out grainy? ›

If your fudge is tough, hard, or grainy, then you may have made one of several mistakes: You may have overcooked it, beaten it too long, or neglected to cool it to the proper temperature.

What gives fudge the creamy texture and dull appearance? ›

The addition of egg whites and gelatin will coat the sugar crystals and keep them small. This results in creamy fudge. Shhh! It's a Fudgy Secret!

What's the difference between smooth and crumbly fudge? ›

Smooth fudge often has a rich and decadent flavour. Crumbly fudge, as the name suggests has a more granular and crumbly texture. It is made with similar ingredients to smooth fudge but cooked to a higher temerature or for a shorter time than smooth fudge.

How to make your fudge soft? ›

One way to do so is to place the fudge in an airtight container with some source of moisture and leave it to absorb overnight. This could be: A bowl of water. A damp paper towel.

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