I like to include new flavors and treats on my Christmas dessert buffet. I try at least 2-3 new things each year. This year I not only made the cutest mini cupcakes, I made some lemon fudge! I’ve never thought to make a fudge with citrus flavoring, but it works well in a virtual sea of our favorite chocolate and peanut butter sweets. And it was so easy it was ridiculous!
I started by using graham crumbs instead of cookie crumbs in the crust. I love graham crusts, that’s my excuse. You could use whichever kind of crumbs you like. When I had them combined with the melted butter and pressed into a foil covered, sprayed pan, I slide the pan into the oven for 15 minutes.
The recipe had cautioned about increasing or decreasing the amount of butter depending on what kind of cookie crumbs you used. I should have known better; later my crust mostly fell off of my fudge because I didn’t use enough butter. I used the 3 tablespoons, and should have used 4. I had noticed it was pretty crumbly and not terribly cohesive as I patted the crust into the pan but ignored it. Not a good move.
As the crust cooled I place a cup of white chips into a bowl and set it aside. The remainder of the white chips went into a medium sized saucepan along with the sweetened condensed milk. I won’t tell you to NOT use evaporated milk; I hate when the recipe assumes I can’t read correctly and tells me that.
When the chips were melted I removed the saucepan from the heat. I stirred the lemon extract and yellow food coloring into the saucepan of melted chips along with the zest.
I carefully spread the fudge over the crust in the pan, trying not to disturb the crust. It wanted to rise up around the edges and corners.
I put the bowl of remaining chips into the microwave for a minute, then stirred well. I had to do 15 more seconds then stir again to get the chips to be melted smoothly. I added the marshmallow by eyeballing it. I looked at my 3/4 cup measuring cup and decided I was not going to measure that sticky mess, I just dumped a couple of blobs of marshmallow into the chips that looked like the right amount and stirred.
I had to microwave the chips and marshmallow mixture for 15 more seconds to soften it enough to blend well. It seizes up a little at first, don’t panic.
Next I dropped spoonfuls of the melted chips and marshmallow over the top and used a small icing spatula to swirl it into the bottom layer of chips.
The fudge sat on the counter for 15 minutes then I put it into the fridge to continue setting up.
When the fudge was firm I lifted it out of the pan using the foil as handles and set it on a cutting board to cut into pieces. As I mentioned earlier, my crust didn’t stay together so this was a bit of a mess. I cut it into 64 small pieces and put it into a covered container and stored it in the fridge again.
I tasted a piece and was super impressed with the flavor! My P.S. said it needed more lemon flavor. I might try it with 1 1/2 or 2 teaspoons of lemon extract next time. Perhaps more zest as well.
Lemon Meringue Pie Fudge
A lighty lemony fudge with a crust!
- 1 1/2 cups cookie crumbs (shortbread, lemon shortbread, or lemon cookies) (I used graham crumbs)
- 3-4 tablespoons butter; melted (adjust based on the type of cookie used)
- 2 bags white baking chips; divided (I use Ghirardelli)
- 14 ounces can sweetened condensed milk
- 1 teaspoon pure lemon extract (or more if you prefer it really lemon-y)
- Optional: add 1/2-1 teaspoons lemon zest for extra flavor
- 2-3 drops yellow food coloring
- 3/4 cup marshmallow fluff
Set aside one cup of white chocolate chips in a small bowl. Place remaining white chocolate chips in a medium saucepan. Add the sweetened condensed milk and stir over medium-low heat until melted.
Place the bowl of chips in the microwave and heat for one minute. Stir. Heat for 15 seconds increments more, stirring each time, until chips are melted.
Remove the saucepan from the heat when melted and stir in the lemon extract, the zest if using and the food coloring. Pour over crust.
Working quickly, stir marshmallow fluff into the white chocolate chips. It may seize a little but that’s ok. Microwave another 15 seconds if necessary to blend together.
Drop chunks of the white mixture on top of the lemon fudge and swirl with a knife or small spatula.
Cool for 10-15 minutes and then chill until set. Slice and serve. Store in a covered container in the fridge.
Adapted from Crazy For Crust