I've been the last two weeks pretty much playing non-stop with my new Vitamix, a gadget for which I've long yearned and have finally acquired. One of the biggest pros about the machine, from these peepers at least, is its ability to quickly and easily make nut butters. With great masses of peanut, cashew, and almond butters stacking up in my limited kitchen space, however, I needed something to actually do with it all.
Vaguely reminiscent of the popular Indian sweet Badam Pak, this vegan fudge uses an almond butter base for both texture and flavour. Almond butter is a smooth and creamy paste with a mild enough flavour to take on the stronger essences of coffee and chocolate, thus making the perfect foundation for a flavoured non-dairy fudge.
Vegan fudge recipe notes
Getting the consistency of the sugar syrup right is fairly important, but the worst that will happen if you don't is your fudge won't be as solid. You've got a couple of options at this point, the easiest being to roll tablespoonfuls into balls (which you can then coat with sugar, chopped nuts, or paperclips. Except possibly not the latter).
The second option is to remove some of the moisture by cooking the mixture further. If you opt for this choice, make sure the heat isn't too high and that you stir constantly.
Mocha Almond Vegan Fudge
- In a bowl, mix the salt (if your almond butter is already salted, err on a lesser amount or even none) with the almond butter and vanilla extract. Set aside.
- Heat the sugar and water in a small, heavy bottomed saucepan over medium-high heat for 3-4 minutes until the sugar is dissolved and the syrup begins to thicken slightly.
- Add the cocoa powder and coffee granules, stirring rapidly to combine the ingredients (the mixture will bubble up in volume, but it's not going to explode or anything, at least I hope not).
- Leave to cook for a few minutes, until the syrup is very sticky. Test the consistency of the syrup by placing a drop of syrup between your thumb and forefinger; a solid string should form when pressed together and pulled gently apart. This could take up to 8 or ten minutes, perhaps less.
- When the syrup is ready, quickly pour it into the bowl with the almond butter mixture. Incorporate all of the ingredients together into a stiff dough, ensuring everything is mixed thoroughly. You can kneed this with your hands if need be (but be careful of the heat).
- Spoon the dough into a greased mould (tupperware's fine), smoothing the surface out with your fingers and/or a spatula. Smack the container on the counter a few times to eliminate large gaps in the fudge. Refrigerate for a little while to help solidify the fudge before slicing and devouring.