your oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C). If using hazelnuts,
place on a baking sheet and bake for about 12 to 14 minutes or until
the nuts are lightly brown and fragrant. Remove from oven and place
on a wire rack to cool. Then chop coarsely.
If using pecans, walnuts, or
toast the nuts for about 6 to 8 minutes, or until lightly brown and fragrant. Cool and then chop coarsely.
Fudge: First line
the bottom and sides of an 8 inch square
(20 cm) with foil or parchment paper. Butter the foil or spray with a non stick
sweetened condensed milk, chopped chocolate, and butter in a heatproof bowl. Place over a
saucepan of simmering water. Melt the chocolate mixture, stirring frequently, making sure the mixture doesn't
get too hot or the fudge may be
grainy. Stir until smooth (it will be very thick). Remove from heat, and stir in the vanilla
extract and chopped nuts. Spread the
fudge into the prepared pan, smoothing the top with an offset spatula or the
back of a spoon.
stand at room temperature until cool and firm (this can take several hours). Then
carefully remove the fudge from the pan by lifting the edges of the foil. With a
long, sharp knife cut the fudge into one inch (2.5 cm) pieces. Store in an
airtight container, in the refrigerator, for
several days or freeze, well wrapped, for several months. Let thaw at room
temperature, unwrapped, for a few hours before serving.
Makes 64 - one inch (2.5 cm) pieces of chocolate fudge. Preparation time 45