It seems a nice rounding off to the Christmas posts to make my 400th post to this version of the blog with a Merry Christmas to you all. Thanks for making this journal worth coming back to with your comments and with your own blogs and journals as well! Looking forward to 2008 with anticipation of more great adventures.
Merry Christmas, and if I don’t make it back here before 2008, a Happy New Year to you too!
Christmas Fudge = Russian Fudge… sorry Fi if you were expecting some new revelatory recipe… for our family, this is an annual event… all of us girls make it and give it away… Funnily we all have different preferences in terms of cooking time and final texture of the completed work… this is mine… the illustrated edition…
Here’s the recipe… oooh I’m having a flashback… have I done this before??? This is another traditional Kiwi one straight out of the stock standard Edmonds Cookbook… (every other Kiwi you know probably has one…)
3 cups sugar
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon golden syrup
- Put sugar and milk into a saucepan. (I’ll point out at this stage that I made double recipe – this is clearly more than 3 cups of sugar!!)
- Heat gently (I usually start at the very middle setting on my stove and watch it, if it starts to bubble before it has fully dissolved turn the heat down) , stirring constantly until sugar dissolves. (I always find this is tricky, just how dissolved is dissolved??? I find if I’m patient I can get the melted sugar to be virtually crystal free… how long it takes depends on the heat… and my patience – it usually runs out when it’s about 90-95% runny and that’s usually 15min or so I think.)
- Add condensed milk, butter, salt and golden syrup. Stir until butter has melted. (I stir till the melted butter has mixed in with the rest…I hope you’re not dieting, by the way…)
- Bring to the boil and continue boiling until the soft ball stage, stirring occasionally to prevent burning (you’ll notice darker flecks of fudged which has cooked to the bottom come through the pot as you do this, it’s no drama, but you do need to do this regularly as those brown flecks turn to burnt if you’re not careful).
- Edited to add – I’d probably cook it for longer than this if I were doing it now, the fudge is a bit soft here… actually, I’ll get a sugar thermometer and cook it to the right temp 235F or 113C) Remove from heat. Cool slightly.
- Beat until thick.
- Pour into buttered tin.
- Mark into squares. Cut when cold.
The recipe doesn’t tell you to eat it… I guess that goes without saying, but I can report that even if you have an uncontrollable sweet tooth this recipe is seriously restrictive in the amount you can eat at one sitting… it is rich beyond compare…
I’ve been holding off on putting up the tree. There are a few reasons for this, one is that the tree and it’s adornments were tucked away in the backest of beyond in my wardrobe and getting them down involved hassle. The second was that it really is a bit redundant putting up the tree just for oneself… Still, in view of my sentimental attachment to me decorations this is a weak argument… go back to point one.
The final and most compelling reason I’d held out was the anticipation of feline interference in not only the decorating process but at an ongoing level.
It would appear as though my fears are by no means groundless. Remains to be seen what state it will all be in when he’s home alone with it all…
Fi has posted her Christmas favourites this evening and as I was of a mind to do similar this week I’m following suit. I’m a big Christmas fan, not so much of going overboard with decorations and frills and furbelows but with all the things that make it a special time. The God stuff for sure, but the music, baby, the music is a big deal come Yuletide…
Counting down from number 5… Carol of the Bells. I heard this first on the Home Alone movie… dates me, for sure but there’s a catchyness about the track and this version of it done by Celtic Woman is no exception. I love hearing how others have arranged fabulous tracks. I plan on doing it in our choir’s Christmas repertoire eventually… we actually have to get the choir off the ground first…
Number 4… The Hallelujah Chorus from Handel’s Messiah. This is a dodgily recorded version of the ‘Soulful Messiah’ which is a brilliant cover of the oratorio, given the gospel treatment… have I said I used to sing in a choir like this???
Was the time of my life…
3. Walking in a Winter Wonderland. What is it about a white Christmas that just seems more… Christmassy? I think it’s our European heritage in the Antipodes that puts us crook… we really are young countries and our ancestors had white Christmases and we follow suit… this song says Christmas to me… I love too that this version is sung by one of my teen idols… Amy Grant.
Number 2 was a toss up. I could have put it in as number 1 but God always wins in these contests…
You can’t grow up in New Zealand without singing a Christmas folk song called Te Harinui. It recounts the bringing of the gospel (all that Jesus stuff) to New Zealand, not on a snowy night… not with angels… but in the words of Samuel Marsden, the first missionary to NZ. Fi, he preached this sermon up your way… guess that’s where Marsden Pt gets its name…
Anyway, couldn’t find a video or even a halfway decent track so I did what every Garage Band owning singer does… I made one for you. Red, this is for you… you asked me donkey’s ago to sing for you… and now I am… So, here it is, one night only. Deeleea Singular singing her homesick Christmas song… (PS… please forgive the tragic midi backing track… )Number 1. Christmas is the God stuff for me. An outlandish tale of God stepping into the world all for the sake of ratbags like us. That’s some big love, right there.
There isn’t a song that captures it better for me than Silent Night. Josh Groban gives it his treatment here…