I was innocently sitting in my scrap room watching TV...sorta watching. I was putting away some embellishments while the Food Channel was on in the background. Paula Deen was on. It was her show Sweet Endings which was about desserts. As I haphazardly listened to the show while trying to figure out where the Memory Maker ribbons should go, something on the TV caught my eye. Paula was making fudge. Yum, I thought. And then she put something in the fudge that made me stop in my tracks. "No she didn't just put (secret ingredient) into that fudge did she? Holy Crap! So, thanks to Tivo, I rewound and watched it again. Holy Crap...that really is (secret ingredient) she just put in that fudge. Still not really believing what I was seeing I went to the Food Channel web site and looked up the recipe. Yep, there it was in print, the peanut butter fudge recipe with the (secret ingredient). Wow. I knew then and there that I HAD to make this recipe (and that nobody would believe what I was putting in it!).
Knowing I was headed to a scrap retreat in a week and was in charge of desserts I e-mailed the girls and let them know I was bringing (Secret Ingredient) Peanut Butter Fudge...and asked them to guess the (secret ingredient). I got lots of guesses, none which came close.
Even while making the fudge at the scrap retreat people couldn't guess the (secret ingredient). I even had it in the pot melting with the peanut butter, had one girl come up and look in the pot and...nope, she still couldn't guess what the (secret ingredient) was. One girl, after twenty questions, did figure it out and she along with a few other girls who were there listening went "ewwww"...they no longer seemed very interested in trying the fudge.
So I made the fudge. When it was done I cut it up and passed it around. The girls really liked it, but they still couldn't figure out what the (secret ingredient) was. When they found out, yeah, there were a few "you have to be frigging kidding us", and "Uh maybe I don't like this anymore"...but mostly just complete and utter disbelief in what the (secret ingredient) was and that the fudge tasted good.
Without knowing, Mr. L, mom and even The Former Right Hand Woman tried the (Secret Ingredient) Peanut Butter Fudge and liked it. The (secret ingredient) really made the fudge smooth and you really can't taste it in the fudge.
So, guessed what the (secret ingredient) is yet? Well, let's just say Paula calls it her "Peanut Butter Cheese Fudge".
PEANUT BUTTER (SECRET INGREDIENT) FUDGE
1/2 pound sliced easy-melt cheese (recommended: Velvetta)
1 cup (2 sticks) butter
1 cup creamy peanut butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup chopped nuts
2 (16-ounce) boxes confectioners' sugar
Lightly spray the bottom of a 9 x 2-inch square pan with nonstick cooking spray. In a saucepan over medium heat, melt cheese and butter together, then add peanut butter and stir until smooth. Remove from heat and add vanilla and nuts.
Empty confectioners' sugar into a large bowl and pour cheese mixture over sugar. Stir until completely mixed. Candy will be very stiff.
Using your hands, remove candy from the bowl and press evenly and firmly into the pan. Because of the amount of butter in this recipe, pat top of candy with a paper towel to remove excess oil. Place the pan in refrigerator until candy is firm. To serve, cut in squares. Makes 36 squares.
Note: I used Velvetta, Skippy Peanut Butter and chopped walnuts.
Note: I would do the patting with paper towel to remove excess oil thing as I could tell it made a difference.
This fudge was very good, secret ingredient aside. It's also obviously, a great conversation starter. Very rich and creamy. Freak out your family and make some and don't tell them the (secret ingredient) until they've had a bite...or two.
Paula Deen has a new book out called "Christmas With Paula Deen". You can find this recipe in that book.