3 cups sugar
¾ cup butter
⅔ cup half and half
12 ounces white chocolate chips
1 7- ounce jar marshmallow creme
½ cup finely crushed candy canes or peppermint candies
1 teaspoon peppermint extract
2 teaspoons red food coloring
Line 9-inch square pan with foil, with ends of foil extending over sides. Spray pan with cooking spray and rub with a paper towel. Set aside. Also spray a small thin-bladed knife with cooking spray (a butter knife works well for this). Set aside.
Combine sugar, butter and half and half in a sauce pan (at least 3 quart-size) over medium heat until mixture comes to a full rolling boil, stirring constantly (don’t mistake bubbling at the edges for a full boil). Cook for exactly 4 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat.
Add white chocolate chips and allow to sit for 1 minute, then stir until all chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth. Add marshmallow creme and peppermint extract. Stir again until smooth and well mixed.
Sprinkle peppermint over the top and gently fold it into the chocolate mixture. Stir just until combined (if you stir too much at this point, mixture will turn pink and the final product won’t be as pretty.)
Pour approximately half of mixture into prepared pan. Spread to cover bottom. Using a small spoon, sprinkle 1 teaspoon of the red food coloring in random drops over the surface of the fudge. Quickly pour the other half of the fudge mixture over the red food coloring. Spread evenly. Drizzle the other teaspoon in random drops over the top.
Using the side of the prepared knife, run it back and forth through fudge creating a swirled pattern. Once you get a pretty swirly pattern, stop. If you swirl too much the whole mixture will turn pink. Cool completely (if you’re in a hurry, like I usually am, refrigerate fudge till cool). Use the foil handles to lift fudge from pan before cutting into squares.
1/2 cup maraschino cherries
4 ounces unsalted butter (at room temperature)
2 cups sugar
3/4 cups cream
1/2 teaspoon salt
12 ounces white chocolate chips (or chopped white chocolate)
7 ounces marshmallow cream
1/2 to 1 teaspoons cherry extract
Optional: pink food coloring
About 30 minutes before making the fudge, finely chop the maraschino cherries. Place them between thick layers of paper towel, and press well to remove as much moisture as possible. Let them sit for about 30 minutes to dry out (longer is okay.) Having moist cherries will make your fudge gooey, so try to get as much liquid out as possible. Prepare an 8×8-inch pan by lining it with aluminum foil and spraying the foil with nonstick cooking spray.
Place the butter, sugar, cream and salt in a heavy-bottomed medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Stir until the sugar and butter melt. Once the mixture comes to a boil, insert a candy thermometer.
Continue to cook the fudge, stirring frequently, until it reaches 235 F on the candy thermometer.
Once at the proper temperature, remove the pan from the heat and add the white chocolate chips and the marshmallow cream. Stir vigorously until the chips and cream are melted and incorporated. If necessary, return the fudge to the heat for brief periods to melt the chips.
Add 1/2 tsp cherry extract and the pink food coloring. Stir, and taste the fudge. Add additional cherry extract if necessary, to get a strong cherry flavor. Add the chopped cherries and stir well. Pour the fudge into the prepared pan and smooth it into an even layer.
Let the fudge set at room temperature for 3-4 hours, or in the refrigerator for 1-2 hours. To serve, cut it into small 1-inch pieces. Store Cherry Chip Fudge in an airtight container at room temperature for up to one week or in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.