Tuesday, December 10, 2013
When you can stick your finger into it without it burning...
Jordan has been fantasizing about making a snowman for ages.
"When is it going to snow I want to make a snowman when is it going to snow when is it going to snow?"
So finally, it did. And there's not a lot, but enough for leafy snowballs and snowpersons. We headed out with neighbors and their kids, and together we made a, uh, snowalien.
Someone suggested we make it a snowzombie but I seriously can't handle zombie anything. Ghosts I find interesting. Zombies, terrifying.
Anyway, ours is a vegetarian snowalien. Don'tcha think?
In other winter news, my cousin Lyrae and I decided to make her grandmother Florence's fudge.
Florence was my Gramma Lillian's sister. She was a North Dakota farm wife, and never had a recipe, but one time my mom watched her making it and wrote it down as they went.
The Swedes and the Norwegians, neighbors all, had the same jokes - the butt of them depended on your ancestry.
So the fudge.
We cooked it and cooked it and cooked it, following the somewhat vague instructions. Is it supposed to look like this? Is this simmering? This is definitely simmering. Why isn't it getting hotter? Is it too hot? Why is it taking so long to cool?
I think we initially kept the heat too low trying to get it to the "soft ball" stage. We even used a candy thermometer with a line that actually says Soft Ball and Hard Ball.
At one point Betty, Lyrae and I were all huddled around the fudge pot, with Lyrae holding the thermometer upright, Betty dipping in a spoon to see if it was sheeting, and me adjusting the temperature. And then we were all, "How many Norwegians does it take..."
In any case, my favorite part of this recipe is toward the end, when it says, "If you can stick your finger into the fudge without it burning, fudge is ready to beat."
Eventually we turned it up and it got to soft, or anyway, soft- but hard-enough ball and we said screw it, and then I beat it until the gloss went away, which doesn't happen and doesn't happen and doesn't happen and then suddenly! Happens!
Ultimately, the fudge is fantastic. If I do say so myself.
And it only took us three Norwegians most of a day.