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Our Top 12 Tips For Homemade Fudge and Scottish Tablet

Our Top 12 Tips For Homemade Fudge and Scottish Tablet

In this blog we're answering 12 of our most popular questions about Homemade Fudge and Scottish Tablet. We'll share hints and tips to help you create the tastiest homemade treats. 

Great Taste 2019 Award Winning Scottish Tablet surrounded by sugar and fudge pieces

So you’ve decided to make some sweet treats and maybe you fancy some Scottish Tablet to surprise your loved ones. Or, you might have an urge to make some tasty Homemade Fudge just for yourself. Let's say you start to make your Homemade Fudge. You follow a Fudge recipe and it’s going smoothly then all of a sudden disaster strikes. Your Fudge hasn’t set so you consider throwing it away and starting from scratch. Stop! Put your wooden spoon down and take a look at our top 12 tips. Don’t waste your time or ingredients. Unless you’ve completely burnt your Fudge we have tips to satisfy your sweet tooth. 

Perhaps you decide to make the perfect Scottish tablet. You follow a Scottish Tablet Recipe that has been passed down your family for years. After following every step as instructed, you notice your Scottish Tablet is starting to look like toffee. This can’t be right? Everyone else in the family uses this recipe and this never happens. 

If you have a disaster when making your sweet treats, make sure to read our tips before you throw them away. From grainy fudge to burnt tablet, our top 12 tips cover the most common kitchen mistakes. 

The Ochil Fudge Pantry's 4 Fudge Gift Box containing handmade Scottish Fudge

1. Why is my Fudge Grainy? 

There's a variety of reasons why your Homemade Fudge is grainy. It could be that you didn’t dissolve all the sugar before boiling the Fudge mixture. Maybe it’s because there wasn’t enough liquid or fat to help the sugar dissolve. It could even be because the fudge wasn’t beaten long or hard enough. 

If you are using an electric whisk instead of hand beating your Homemade Fudge it's important to remember that this is a very easy way to overbeat Fudge. When Fudge is overbeaten it can also create a grainier texture on the tongue, so be extra careful when using electric equipment to beat your Homemade Fudge! 

2. Why is my Fudge not setting? 

    The most common reason for Fudge not setting is due to Homemade Fudge not reaching the optimum temperature it needed to be. If your mixture only reaches 110 or 112 degrees celsius it’s always going to be soft. Unless you know when your Fudge is hot enough by looking at it we recommend purchasing a sugar thermometer and take the guesswork out. Another reason is that the ratio of liquid to sugar in your Fudge ingredients is too high. 

    The good news is you have probably made an amazing thick Fudge sauce! You could simply pour it over ice cream and enjoy it. 

    Bar of handmade Salted Caramel Fudge surrounded by fudge pieces and caramel sauce

    3. Does the weather affect Fudge making?

      Yes as ridiculous as this sounds it does make a difference. The damper the day with an increased humidity level will mean the Fudge will take longer to boil, it will boil higher in the pan and it will be a little softer set when it’s left to cool. The best day to make Fudge is a cool, dry day with low humidity. Ironically it’s normally on a damp wet Sunday afternoon most people choose to make fudge! 

      You can whack your Fudge Recipe out on a damp Sunday afternoon, you just need to ensure you boil your fudge to 0.5 degrees higher than your normal temperature. Additionally, you should expect that this exercise will last a little longer and use a slightly lower heat on the pan base. This will reduce the possibility of the fudge boiling over. 

      4. How long does Scottish Tablet keep? 

        Sugar is a natural preservative and given that Tablet is over 50% sugar if kept in an airtight tin, stored at room temperature it can last for around 10 days. If it is kept in the fridge it can keep well for a few weeks…that’s if it ever lasts that long! 

        5. How do you store Scottish Tablet? 

          Tablet can be kept in a container or biscuit tin or cookie jar. It's best when kept in cool, dry conditions and the container is not completely airtight as it can increase moisture levels. When we say cool conditions we mean not in heat above 18 degrees celsius. So it’s always a good idea to consider this, especially during winter when the heating is on.   

          Scottish Tablet Cubes in a Copper Pot on a wooden board with fudge pieces and knife

          6. Why is the Scottish Tablet I make so pale?

            It takes time before your Scottish Tablet turns into that beautiful golden brown colour. If you rush your Scottish Tablet Recipe you’ll get a pale sweet and it won’t be proper Scottish tablet. It takes time (lots of time) and patience. 

            7. Why does the Scottish Tablet I make turn out like toffee? 

              If your temperature is too high for too long you’ll create toffee and the higher the temperature you go the harder the tablet will become right the way through to a proper brittle toffee which usually happens at around 149 degrees celsius. We recommend purchasing a sugar thermometer so you know when the temperature is just right. 

              8. Why does my Scottish Tablet not set? 

                The main reason for this is because you’ve not brought your Scottish Tablet Recipe to a temperature that’s high enough when cooking it. The Scottish Tablet mixture needs to reach a very high temperature that will ensure it will set and be boiling for a lengthy amount of time which is usually 20 minutes. 

                Stacks of Scottish Tablet Cubes wrapped in parchment paper

                9. Why is my Scottish Tablet grainy? 

                  If your Tablet is grainy it usually means that you have melted the sugar too quickly. However, if your Tablet is grainy but not sugary and you’d prefer it to be just a little smoother then it is all down to beating. 

                  Once you take your Tablet off the heat let it cool down for 2 to 3 minutes and then beat it for a good five minutes vigorously. You’ll see the mixture thicken and it should be ready to pour. At this point you need to be extremely careful, if you pour your mixture too soon you may end up with a very grainy mixture, which usually means the sugar crystals haven’t been fully stretched. 

                  10. Why does my Scottish Tablet burn in the pan? 

                    There are two main reasons for your Scottish Tablet burning in the pan, the first is that you aren’t using a heavy enough pan and the second is that you need to stir your Tablet more often. 

                    The pan you use needs to be large and have a heavy base, this is because you are heating the mixture to such a high temperature. The volume of the mixture will also triple as it comes to the boil, therefore you need to ensure you have a suitably sized pan!


                    Homemade Fudge Recipe In a Heavy Based Pan with a Sugar Thermometer and Long Handled Red Spoon

                    11. Why does my Scottish Tablet Recipe turn out like sugar? 

                      There are three main reasons your Scottish Tablet Recipe has turned out like sugar: 

                      1. You don’t have enough milk. 
                      2. The butter to sugar ratio is not correct. 
                      3. You’ve tried to cook the tablet too fast and you haven’t given the sugar the time it needs to melt. 

                      Although Scottish tablet does have a crunchier texture to fudge, it should never taste like eating a mouthful of sugar and if it does then your sugar hasn’t dissolved properly. 

                      12. What equipment do you need to make Scottish Tablet? 

                        1x Hob/ cooker top 

                        1x Large heavy-bottomed pan 

                        1x Large long-handled spoon 

                        1x Sugar thermometer 

                        1x Deep edged baking tray lined with parchment paper 

                        That’s all the equipment needed! It’s really important to make sure your pan is heavy-bottomed as it will be very, very hot for at least 45-50 minutes. The long-handled spoon will help avoid the spoon slipping into the boiling Tablet and keep your hands away from the fierce heat! 

                        An Ochil Fudge Pantry Fudge Maker wearing cap and apron stirring Scottish Tablet in a Heavy Base Pan.

                        Don't fancy making Fudge or Scottish Tablet?

                        We have a variety of delicious Handmade Fudge and Scottish Tablet if you don't fancy making your own. Try our range today! 

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