Reader question: One of my family’s favorite holiday traditions was a recipe known as Mamie Eisenhower’s Fudge. But it tastes too sweet to me now. A single batch has 4 1/2 cups of sugar. Could I reduce the sugar by half or even more?
A. Sadly, reducing the sugar in candy isn’t that simple. Sugar isn’t just sweet. It provides bulk, structure, caramelization and crystalization. It even provides liquid when it melts.
In fact, in the old favorite recipe you mentioned, the sugar isn’t the sweetest thing in the mix. It contains both marshmallow cream and German chocolate. Those make the recipe more forgiving than a true fudge, which can turn grainy if you aren’t precise with the temperatures. Both of them also help to reduce the sugar in the recipe, but they are very sweet themselves.
Rather than attempt to reduce the sugar, which could be very messy and frustrating, you’d be better off trying to find a different recipe that suits your taste today. Or just save that special fudge as a once-a-year treat.
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