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Friday, January 9, 2009

Woodbury Fudge

My grandmother had a recipe for Fudge that I have found few other places. She got it from her mother who got it from hers traceable back as far her ancestors were Mormon. Over the Christmas holidays, my siblings and I were talking about it origins. None of us could recall the details. So it was time for some research.

Apparently her recipe is called "Opera Fudge" and was "invented" in 1866 in Baltimore. Opera fudge is made like regular fudge except that after cooking to a "soft ball" stage the fudge is then treated in the "creme fondent method" which means it is poured on a marble slab or on a large platter and allowed to cool completely. Then it is stirred with a wooden spoon or paddle until the glossy shine fades to a matte finish. It is then worked by hand adding butter and milk until it is soft like clay. It is then formed into inch thick logs and sliced for serving. It is call Opera Fudge probably because of its similarity to Opera drops, which were vanilla and made the same way but then covered in chocolate. One source claims this method is older than the currently more popular method of fudge making, but fell off because of being more labor intensive.

And the Woodbury connection? Family histories contain countless attempts to supply the sweets the family wanted. Sorghum molasses and honey were the two most common. One ancestor made a very popular sorghum peach preserves. Others made candy with honey. Every effort was made to replace the supply of Sugar the Utah just did not have. At some point the fudge recipe made it out west, since the Woodbury family has been in the old Salt Lake City 4th and 7th Ward since before they were formed in the early 1850's, they would not have brought it with them.

My Aunt, however, thinks her mother got this recipe when she was attending UofU studying Home Economics in the 1920's.

1 1/4 Cup Milk
2 squares baking chocolate
3 Cups Sugar
2 Tablespons of Butter

Adding a little Corn Syrup helps prevent it from crystalizing too soon, but that is a modern addition.

1 comment:

Lila said...

wow the bio is true, you are an lds history nerd. wink. thank you for your comment but the closest i've been to white house is visiting a friend that lives on ragland rd (not lds, name is rita briley). ;) i live in the mcminnville stake, murfreesboro. sorry to get you excited, still, i like meeting a fellow blogger. i think the map said, white house cause it recorded Your location last, it's confused me that way before at least. happy blogging and family history hunting...