We all have our usual Christmas cookies and other goodies that we make each year. The typical selection for me, has always been rolled-out sugar cookies with a sweet buttercream icing, always made with the same cookie cutter shapes (stocking, bell, tree, star), Russian tea cakes, and on occasion fudge....always with semi-sweet chocolate, and always very rich! Although I look forward to these treats every year, I am always looking for some new ones to add to the holiday spread.
Tonight, I decided to make some fudge. It is made with white chocolate (for years, I have stayed away from white chocolate because I knew it wasn't real chocolate...I can be stubborn that way). Well like other food issues I have recently gotten over, I finally gave in to this confection.
This recipe I adapted from McCormick's Pistachio Fudge (found on recipegoldmine.com). I'll admit, I had every intention to just make the recipe as-is, but then I started thinking about how I had maraschino cherries in the fridge (with no intention to use them) and some adorable Christmas-themed marshmallows. Can't go wrong with all that right?
White Chocolate Cherry-Pistachio Fudge w/ Marshmallow
8oz cream cheese, softened
3 C powdered sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp almond extract
16oz white chocolate chips
Wilton "Leaf Green" Gel Food Coloring
Wilton "Christmas Red" Gel Food Coloring
1/2 C chopped roasted & salted pistachios
1/2 C quartered maraschino cherries (drained well)
1/2 C marshmallows ( I used red and green Christmas trees/stars marshmallows, cut them in half. Or you can just use mini size)
Line an 8x8" baking dish with foil. Foil extending over sides of pan. Spray with cooking spray.
In a large bowl, beat cream cheese with an electric mixer until smooth. One cup at a time, add the powdered sugar--mixing well with each addition. Add the vanilla and almond extracts.
Over a double-boiler, melt the white chocolate until smooth. Pour into cream cheese mixture, blend thoroughly. Divide mixture into 2 bowls. Add desired amount of green food coloring into one bowl, red into the other (I used only a tiny bit. Dipped a toothpick into the colors and spread it over the mixture, if you prefer a bolder color, repeat until desired shade). After the colors are mixed in, fold in the pistachios into the green mixture, cherries into the red.
Pour the pistachio layer on the bottom, spread evenly over pan. Pour the cherry mixture over top. Or if you wish, swirl the two colors with knife. Finally, sprinkle marshmallows over top, pressing them lightly into the fudge. Cover with saran wrap and allow them to sit in the fridge at least one hour before cutting.