Salted Chocolate Fudge.
Everything is ‘salted’ these days, isn’t it? Gone are the days when a salted confectionary was itemised as a luxury item, replaced with days of svelte beauty types ordering some sort of salted pumpkin caramel no fat nonsense from a coffee shop before throwing a ‘Ludwig’ filter on it. But alas, this globalisation of the salted sweet has meant that its properties can creep into our domestic cooking and for that I will be ever grateful.
The pyramid scheme of salted sweets is tantalising. The triangulated experience of combining salt, sugar and fat allows you to experience all three properties for their own individual components (spiky, saccharine and silky) whilst still being able to enjoy the unification of all three together. Getting the balance of all three is important because if one is thrown off kilter it has the ability to make the fusion either too bitter, too sweet or too slimy.
I tried a few balancing acts with salted sweets and found that going back to the basic principles of salt and chocolate was always the most successful with house guests and the vehicle for such a treat: fudge. Don’t let that image frighten you. There’s no thermometers, there’s no churning – there’s not even an oven. It’s just four ingredients that I melt together and let set overnight. It’s really that simple.
Line a 20cm baking tin with baking parchment. I have had to use foil before now in an hour of need but peeling it from the fudge at the end is a ball ache. In a pan on the hob, melt down 300g of dark chocolate (use the one up from a supermarket own brand and feel no kind of way about it guys, we all do it) with 30g of unsalted butter.
Keep stirring here to ensure that the chocolate at the bottom of the pan doesn’t burn (I have a very reliable rubber spatula I use for such a stir) and once this has begun to melt, pour in a whole can of condensed milk. I’m pretty sure all cans of condensed milk are roughly 397g but let’s just say 400g for safety.
Now add ¼ of a table spoon of sea salt. I use Maldon and suggest you do too as it perfectly crumbles between your fingertips so that the control mechanism is better. I don’t recommend table salt in this recipe (or ever!) because it’s much more concentrated. Continue stirring until you achieve a silky consistency and then pour into your baking dish, rounding off with a spoon. Allow to cool for roughly 10-15 minutes before further sprinkling over a pinch of sea salt flakes on to the surface of the fudge before sliding into a fridge to set overnight.
The beauty of this recipe again, is in its simplicity. This is my go to treat when I know I have people coming over and want something idly sat on the side for my friends to pick at when the sweet mood takes them. I mean, the fact it’s only four ingredients is a bonus and purely convenient but then again, who is too precious of convenience when it comes to salted anything?
Girls on Instagram photographing coffee cups with a hashtag #saltedsomething – I salute you.