You'll neeed a thermometer to make this delicious fudge. The mixture must cool to 110 degrees before being beaten to create small sugar crystals which give the sweet its lovely smooth and creamy texture.
There's no substitute for a real vanilla bean in this creamy, flavour-packed fudge. Photo: Marina Oliphant
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450g castor sugar
400g double cream
1 tbsp glucose syrup
1 vanilla bean, split and scraped
Begin preparing this recipe the day before you intend serving it.
Line a 20 x 20-centimetre cake tin with baking paper. Put sugar, cream, butter and glucose syrup into a medium-to-large saucepan. Heat to dissolve sugar and melt butter, stirring now and then.
Once dissolved, insert a sugar thermometer, making sure the end is covered by the syrup. Increase heat and bring syrup to a steady boil. Keep bubbling, stirring occasionally to stop sugar from catching, until the mixture reaches 116C. Remove pan from heat and leave to sit, undisturbed, for five minutes, until the temperature drops to 110C.
Stir in vanilla seeds scraped from pod and a good pinch of salt. Beat mixture vigorously with a wooden spoon until the temperature cools. By this time the fudge will be really thick and will have lost its glossy shine. Continue beating a few more minutes. Before it sets completely, quickly pour fudge into prepared tin and smooth the surface.
Leave to cool at room temperature overnight - don't put fudge in the fridge as it will become sticky and won't set properly. Cut into pieces about 4 centimetres square and put in an airtight container. The sweets will keep, in a sealed container, for up to two months.