It’s a tradition, at least in America, that if you visit Hawaii you bring back chocolate covered Macadamia Nuts for all your friends and family. It’s expected. Don’t ask why. Chocolate covered Macadamia Nuts somehow have become the symbol of a Hawaiian Vacation.
Yet Macadamia trees aren’t native to Hawaii. Oh sure, now they are. But Macadamia trees are actually transplants from Australia. William Purvis, a sugar plantation manager on the Big Island visited Australia in 1882. He found the tree to be a thing of beauty and brought back seeds to grown Macadamia trees for ornamental purposes. It wasn’t until the 1950s that Macadamia Nuts were commercially produced for their fruits. Nuts are considered a healthy snack. For the most part, that is true. However; there is a reason Macadamias are covered it chocolate. These nuts are low in protein and high in fat. So why not further erode what little healthy benefits there might be in chocolate? Or bake them into a cookie. Or a hundred of other ways to incorporate Macadamias into our desire for sweet treats.
In the past, we’ve celebrated Macadamia Nut Day with White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies and Banana-Ginger Macadamia Cake, so this time around I thought why not fudge? It’s more in keeping with the traditional Hawaiian souvenir of Chocolate Covered Nuts. Who doesn’t love fudge? If this recipe seems familiar, you’d be right. It’s the Fantasy Fudge recipe found on a jar of Marshmallow Fluff. We’ve just simply substituted the walnuts with Macadamia Nuts instead. Enjoy!
Creamy Macadamia Nut Fudge
1-1/2 cups chopped Macadamia Nuts
3 cups Sugar
3/4 cup Butter
1 (5 oz) can Evaporated Milk (about 2/3 cup)
12 oz package Semi-Sweet Chocolate chips
7 oz jar Marshmallow Crème
1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
Note: Do not use sweetened condensed milk!
Line 9-inch square pan with foil, with ends of foil extending over sides. Lightly butter the foil.
Note: A 9-inch square pan will yield thick chunks of fudge. If a less thick piece of fudge is desired, use a 9 x 13-inch pan.
Coarsely chop nuts. Set aside 1 cup to add to fudge, remaining 1/2 cup to garnish.
Bring sugar, butter and evaporated milk to full rolling boil in 3-quart saucepan on medium heat, stirring constantly. Cook 5 minutes or until candy thermometer reaches 234 degrees F, stirring constantly. Remove from heat.
Off heat, add the chocolate and stir until the chips have completely melted. Fold in marshmallow crème; stir until no streaks of marshmallow cream remain. Add 1 cup of Macadamia nuts and vanilla; mix well.
Pour the fudge mixture into the prepared pan; spread to cover the pan completely. While the fudge is still soft, sprinkle with remaining nuts, pressing lightly to adhere.
Note: Work quickly as the fudge will set up in no time.
Cool completely at room temperature. Use foil handles to lift fudge from pan and transfer to a board. Peel off foil before cutting into squares.