Sneaky Fudge

It’s the last day of the year!  Tomorrow we are off to the races with our New Year’s resolutions.  All our low-fat, more exercise, less bacon resolutions. (Sniffle). New year, new you, new me and all the jazz, and you know what that means.  It means we have exactly 24 hours left to eat chocolate.  And by chocolate, I mean fudge.  And by fudge, I mean this particular version of fudge, that includes not only a generous amount of dark chocolate, but a few sneaky ingredients that will have you wondering why you spent all that time eating well-behaved fudge.

Sneaky ingredient #1: Coffee.  I used espresso in my fudge, and you’d never know it was in there.  You know something is giving it that little kick, but unless you saw the coffee going in you can’t…quite…place it.  But man, is it good.  I’ve tried the coffee trick before in muffins and I like it just as much in fudge.

Sneaky ingredient #2: Cinnamon.  This one you will be able to taste if you concentrate hard enough.  And of course everything is better with cinnamon.  Everything.

Sneaky ingredient #3: Coarse salt.  Sprinkled right on top.  This also does wonders for chocolate chip cookies – sprinkle just a teeny bit on top of the dough before you bake ’em. That whole sweet and salty thing is just as fabulous as it’s cracked up to be.

Sneaky ingredient #4: Red pepper.  Yes, red pepper.  Do NOT leave it out.  That’s an order.  (If it makes you feel better, there is pepper in chai tea, and we all know how good THAT is.)

Everything else in this fudge recipe is what you expect to find in fudge recipes – condensed milk, butter and of course lots of chocolate. Dark chocolate, please.

But it’s the sneaky stuff that makes this fudge extra special.  Oh, and if you are reading this post after the New Year starts, I think I remember reading that dark chocolate is a power food.  As in, good for you.  As in, there’s no reason why sneaky fudge can’t be part of the whole new-year-new-you thing.  Right?  Right!

Sneaky Fudge
Serves: Makes 64 pieces
  • One 14 ounce can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 tablespoon coffee (brewed espresso is fabulous but any brewed coffee will work)
  • 1 pound dark chocolate chips
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • ⅛ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • Coarse salt for sprinkling
  1. Line an 8x8 square cake pan with nonstick foil or parchment paper and lightly spray it with cooking spray.
  2. Put condensed milk, coffee, chocolate chips and butter in the top of a double boiler. Heat over simmering water until chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth, stirring all the time.
  3. Stir in cinnamon and red pepper flakes.
  4. Scrape evenly into the cake pan. Sprinkle with salt.
  5. Chill in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours (overnight works even better). Cut into small squares. This fudge keeps best in the fridge, although you can bring it to room temperature to serve it if you like.


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