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July 22nd is National Penuche Day

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If you're looking for something to do today then hold onto your sweet tooth because it's National Penuche Day!  If you like fudge and/or caramel then you're going to love and/or enjoy today!  Let's get right into celebrating National Penuche Day!

WHY IS THIS A HOLIDAY?  

Well, let's put it this way... we all know why most food holidays are set up, right? But think about it... how many people do you know who love eating fudge? Probably a good amount of people, right? Now how many people do you know who love the taste of caramel? Probably an even larger amount of people, huh? Now combine those two groups and you'll have well over half of the people you know. And that should give you a good idea as to why people want to celebrate this sweet treat!  That's right; penuche is a type of fudge that tastes a lot like caramel. And the reason for that flavor is because you caramelize the brown sugar as you're heating it up to the "soft ball" stage, which is about 234 to 240 degrees. Without reaching this temperature, your penuche wouldn't form completely into fudge when you cooled it down. And it's also called a fudge because you let it cool down until it's lukewarm before you add in the flavoring and possibly some nuts. Then you whip it up and pour it into a dish to be cooled completely and then chopped into bite-sized chunks.

But most recipes will be made from butter, brown sugar, milk and vanilla extract. The ingredients may sway a little toward some additional sweetness from regular sugar or corn syrup and you might even end up using heavy whipping cream. Plus, you can add a little something special by adding in walnuts or pecans. But either way it ends up as a light brown fudge that is sure to please your tongue.  Are you ready to try some out?

HOW TO CELEBRATE 

So, how can you celebrate today?  Well, if you have a fudge shop near you or even a candy store that makes their own goods then you might be in luck! Head on over there and ask for penuche by name and they might have a fresh batch waiting there just for you. They may even have a few different varieties of it, so you might end up coming home with a whole box full. Like that's a bad thing, right? ;)  But hey, if you love cooking then you can easily whip this up yourself. I would recommend that you first be sure that you have a candy thermometer, so you can ensure that you get your ingredients to the right temperature. Then you can get everything else your recipe calls for and start whipping it together. The only hard thing about making your own penuche is waiting. You'll have to wait a while until it hits the right temperature. Then you'll have to wait for it to cool back down as it sits untouched in your pan. Then you have to cool it down even more so that it gets solid and you can cut it into chunks.  But it is well worth the wait! And as you're waiting you can invite a bunch of people over to help you chomp on your penuche if you want too. But if people come over before it's done cooling down, then go ahead and whip up another batch with slightly different ingredients if you want. Use vanilla almond milk, peanuts or anything else you can think of that might be a nice twist to a penuche recipe.  Have fun with it and enjoy the sweetness!





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