Recently, I cleared out some of my old cookery books and took them down to the charity shop. Then Dom of Belleau Kitchen set the Random Recipe challenge for December as follows: choose a book that you never use, cook something from it and then take it down to the charity shop. Since I’d just given away all my ignored and rarely used books, I had to make a desperate search. Eventually I found half a dozen books that aren’t exactly in the rarely used category, they’re actually in the category of “I really can’t believe that I still have these”. They’re the kinds of books that supermarkets used to sell in the 1980s for 99p and some other very odd books that I think must have arrived from a parallel universe.
It wasn’t a pleasant prospect but in the spirit of the challenge I chose one of these books at random - the “Microwave Cookbook”. This is a collection of Good Housekeeping recipes published in 1985 and I have a feeling that it came free with my first ever microwave. As I picked it up, the book came open at the last page and there before me was a recipe for Quick Chocolate Fudge.
So a short while afterwards I had a plate full of chocolate fudge. It’s not the greatest fudge I’ve ever had, but it’s most certainly not the worst either. Above all, it’s not a lot of effort and that counts for quite a bit sometimes. I’ve amended the original recipe slightly in the light of experience.
100 g plain chocolate, broken into pieces
100 g butter, cut into pieces
450 g icing sugar, sieved
3 tbsp milk
Put everything into a large, microwave-proof bowl. Microwave on High for around 3 minutes or until the chocolate has melted. (Since microwaves vary in power, you need to watch this stage carefully).
Beat the mixture vigorously with a wooden spoon until smooth. (In fact, it’s a bit tricky getting the mixture completely smooth and if I made it again I think I’d use an electric mixer with paddle attachments instead).
Pour into a buttered 20.5cm x 15cm (8 x 6 inch) rectangular tin. Place in the fridge for an hour or two until set. Cut into pieces – you’ll get up to 36 bits, assuming you’re not too greedy.
I’m off down the charity shop now, but I’m taking some other things as well to avoid the embarrassment of handing over my sad old cookery books on their own.