Pumpkin Pie Fudge

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I don't know about you, but after the onslaught of Thanksgiving dinner gluttony, I am usually too full for dessert.  However, there is something in my brain (or stomach-- stomach be quiet already) that tells me I need to cap off the day's eating with something sweet.  I have shared my recipe for Pumpkin Cream Cheese Truffles ---now it's time to share these tasty little morsels.  

The original recipe called for adding pecans to the fudge mixture.  After making the tart I posted this past week, I wanted to top this batch of fudge with some of the candied walnuts I used for the tart.  I won't make it any other way now.  They add a nice, sweet crunch.  Plus, my personal tastes dictate a little texture in my fudge.  If you're not a nut lover, just omit them from the recipe.  The fudge is quite simple to make, but you do need a candy thermometer to make sure you reach the proper temperature. 

This fudge makes for a great last minute sweet for the dessert table or a nice hostess gift if you are joining others for Thanksgiving day.
Printable Recipe

Pumpkin Pie Fudge
makes 64 pieces

For the Candied Walnuts
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1 Tablespoon light corn syrup
1 1/2 teaspoons granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

For the Fudge
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup packed light brown sugar
8 Tablespoons (4-ounces) unsalted butter
1/2 cup half-and-half
1 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
2 cups mini marshmallows
1 (12-ounce) package white chocolate baking chips
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Pinch of kosher salt

For the Candied Walnuts
Preheat the oven to 350º F.

In a small bowl, combine the walnuts, corn syrup, sugar, and salt.  Spread in a single layer on a parchment lined baking sheet.  Bake, stirring halfway through, until golden brown, about 7 minutes.  Cool on a rack until crisp, about 5 minutes, and break into small clusters.  (The nuts can be prepared up to 24 hours ahead; keep in an airtight container at room temperature.)

For the Fudge
Line an 8-inch square pan with aluminum foil, extending over edges. Lightly butter or spray with non-stick spray the foil; set aside.

In a heavy 3-quart saucepan, combine sugar, brown sugar, butter, half & half, pumpkin and pumpkin pie spice . Cook 5-7 minutes over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture boils and sugar is dissolved. Reduce the heat to low and cook 7-12 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the mixture reaches 234°F (soft ball stage) on candy thermometer. Remove from heat.

Add the marshmallows, baking chips, vanilla, and salt and stir until the mixture is smooth. Pour into the prepared pan. Allow the fudge to cool slightly then sprinkle the candied walnuts over top.  Cool completely.

Remove fudge from pan using foil; remove foil.  Cut into 1-inch squares. Store refrigerated in container with tight-fitting lid for up to 3 weeks.

Source: Adapted from Land-O-Lakes

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