National Nutty Fudge Day – May 12, 2022

Sweeten your taste buds with a dose of delicious nutty fudge on National Nutty Fudge Day this May 12. Every piece of fudge tastes a little bit better with a small sprinkling of nuts on top, doesn’t it? That is exactly what this day represents, whichever flavor of fudge you prefer — chocolate, vanilla, or the more exotic ones. Held to honor this simple treat, nutty fudge day is all about the making (and eating, of course!) of nut-filled fudge. So come on and celebrate with us!

History of National Nutty Fudge Day

There’s a bit of back and forth about who first came up with this ooey-gooey dessert, or even why it is called ‘fudge’. While fudge is thought to be an American invention, its origins are as yet unclear. Multiple stories attribute the invention of fudge to a letter written by Vassar College student Emelyn Battersby Hartridge, about either her cousin or a schoolmate’s cousin, from Baltimore, Maryland. This letter referred to fudge the other girl had made and sold for 40 cents per pound. Hartridge got this recipe and proceeded to make 30 pounds of it for the Vassar College senior auction.

Another story revolves around a young apprentice caramel maker who was tasked with stirring the pot of caramel while his boss was out front serving the customers. Unfortunately, this pot of caramel was too grainy to serve by the time the boss returned. As the story goes, to avoid wasting the ‘failed caramel’ they let the customers have it. The customers were so in love with this dish, they named it after the apprentice who accidentally created it.

Yet another story credits a lecture as being the inspiration behind this dish’s creation. It was said that a Virginia college lecture on making coffee resulted in the students creating fudge by accident.

The history of the word ‘fudge’ itself has evolved over the centuries. First used as a version of the now obsolete ‘fadge’ (which means ‘to make suitable’ or ‘to fit’), the word was initially used as a verb, to mean ‘turn out as expected’ or to ‘merge together’. In later usage ‘fudge’ was still used as a verb but instead meant ‘to put together clumsily or dishonestly.’ This led to the exclamation ‘fudge!’ and then finally to the word as we know it.

Whatever the cause behind this word and the delicious treat, we are very glad to have it in our lives.

National Nutty Fudge Day timeline

Late 1700s
The Word ‘Fudge’ Gets Thrown Around

Records show the word ‘fudge’ starts being used around this time.

1886
Earliest Record Of Fudge Being Made

A young student, Emelyn Battersby Hartridge, writes about her cousin's fudge recipe in a letter — this is the world's earliest record of the yummy dessert.

1888
30 Pounds Of Fudge!

Hartridge takes her cousin's recipe to make 30 pounds of fudge for her college auction.

1895
A Printed Recipe

“The Sun” publishes a recipe titled ‘Fudges at Vassar.’

19th century
Stores Start Selling Fudge

Certain shops on Mackinac Island, Michigan, begin to display a product similar to fudge — they sell it to summer vacationers.

National Nutty Fudge Day FAQs

What is nutty fudge?

To make nutty fudge, you mix sugar, butter, and milk, heat it to the correct temperature, and then combine it while it cools to a smooth, creamy consistency. Chocolate is the most popular form of fudge.

What is the secret to making creamy fudge?

“The trick to good homemade fudge is to cook the ingredients to the right temperature to form a sugar syrup and cool the mixture properly so the texture of the fudge turns out smooth and firm, but soft enough to cut,” according to Allrecipes.

What does Penuche fudge taste like?

“Penuche often has a tannish color and is lighter than regular fudge. It is formed by the caramelization of brown sugar; thus, its flavor is said to be reminiscent of caramel,” defines Wikipedia.

How To Celebrate National Nutty Fudge Day

  1. Make your own nutty fudge

    What better way to celebrate a sweet holiday than to create the very dish said holiday is named after? Get out your favorite recipe and go nuts! Multiple famous recipes include pecans and walnuts but, of course, you can choose to add your preferred kind of nut to your fudge recipe.

  2. Gift a batch of fudge

    Once you’ve mastered the art of making nutty fudge, make a special batch to share with friends and family. Homemade fudge makes for a much more personal and delicious gift. Not only does this treat package well, but it also lasts for longer and, of course, tastes absolutely amazing.

  3. Host a fudge party

    Get your friends together (online or offline) for a special fudge-themed party. You can organize games like ‘identify the fudge flavor,’ or even encourage attendees to bring a batch of their favorite fudge along for a ‘fudge swap.’ Each attendee can leave the party with an easy-to-make fudge recipe to try at home.

Fun Facts About National Nutty Fudge Day

  1. ‘Fudge’ is an ancient Norman name

    This name arrived in England after the Norman Conquest of 1066.

  2. Ingredients vary according to geography

    European fudge recipes usually just contain sugar, cream, and butter, while American-style fudge recipes also add chocolate.

  3. The largest fudge in the world

    Created in Ontario, Canada, this fudge weighed in at a whopping 2.61 metric tons, 5,760 pounds, took over a week to create, and used more than 300 gallons of condensed milk.

  4. Fudge lasts for a long period of time

    Traditional fudge can be stored for a week or two in an airtight container at room temperature, in a refrigerator for two or three weeks, and in a freezer for several months without losing its taste.

  5. A fudge addiction like no other!

    American composer Cole Porter loved fudge so much, he would ship nine pounds of it to himself each month from his hometown.

Why We Love National Nutty Fudge Day

  1. It celebrates fudge

    It's hard to imagine a world without this chocolatey treat, isn't it? If the stories are true, a twist of fate was the only thing standing between us and a fudge-free world. This is why we absolutely need to show our love for this little dessert by making and eating it. Plus, fudge is traditionally American so, if you are too, you can feel very patriotic while celebrating it.

  2. It teaches us how fudge came to be

    If you have not taken a moment to stop and think about the sweet, do it now. National Nutty Fudge Day is the perfect time to rehash the history of how fudge came to be and how it has evolved over the years.

  3. It gives us a reason to learn how to make fudge

    No celebration of food is ever complete without a recipe. This day offers us the perfect excuse to whip up a batch of warm nutty fudge delights for ourselves and our loved ones.

National Nutty Fudge Day dates

YearDateDay
2021May 12Wednesday
2022May 12Thursday
2023May 12Friday
2024May 12Sunday
2025May 12Monday

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