I have a fear of fudge. I seem to end up with something that is as hard as a rock and won’t come out of the pan or a goo that will never set. I decided to try one of the five recipes for Maple Cream in the 1906 Berlin Cook Book. I’ve heard the sap is running and soon real maple sugar will be available. This recipe doesn’t use maple sugar or maple syrup but it is a type of fudge. I chose Mrs. G. Buchhaupt’s recipe since it used the smallest amounts of each ingredient and therefore I would only waste one cup of sugar if my results were disastrous.
Census data is often incorrect in some way whether it is ages or spellings. Based on the 1911 census I think Mrs. G. Buchhaupt is probably listed as 56 year old Catherine Buckhaupt along with her 58 year old husband J. George and their 30 year old unmarried daughter Marie or Maria. They live in Berlin on Church Street and belong to a Lutheran church. Mr. Buchhuapt works as an assessor for a shipper. In 1901, the family name is listed correctly as Buchhaupt and their son Frederick is still living at home.
I followed the instructions and discovered it didn’t take too long for the sugar to melt. I added the butter and kept stirring. I kept testing the mixture to see if it had reached hard ball stage. Although I have used candy thermometers in the past I prefer the old method of testing for soft ball, hard ball, hard crack etc. Again I was surprised at how quickly the sugar reached the correct stage. I poured it onto a buttered plate as suggested in some of the other recipes and it was ready for sampling almost immediately. It was at that point I realized I’d forgotten to add the vanilla. Based on past experience I marked the squares before the candy hardened.
I liked Mrs. G. Buchhaupt’s Maple Cream, even without the vanilla. Her children must have enjoyed this candy and probably learned to make it themselves. This is a great recipe for a beginner as it makes a small amount and is made quickly. In fact, I’m going to keep this recipe on hand for times when sugar cravings hit. I suspect I could make it with just 1/2 a cup of brown sugar and a small saucepan. I think my fear of fudge is almost conquered. Although this isn’t real maple sugar it will tide me over until the real thing is available in a few weeks.
1 cup brown sugar, milk enough to wet the sugar well. Set on fire until melted, then add butter the size of an egg, stir constantly until a little dropped in cold water becomes a hard ball , flavor with vanilla.