Several months ago I went to visit my daughter, who lives in New York. For the first time I was able to actually see Coney Island, a place about which I had read so much. Although it was way past the summer, I had imagined it would still be bright and alive with activity. But it was, instead, quiet and lonely.
I found myself feeling strangely nostalgic there, as though ghosts walked beside me, and together we remembered the heyday of roller coasters and cotton candy and oddities and excitement and the bright sound of waves crashing against the boardwalk.
Today I made Coney Island Fudge, and I even left it to cool in a 1940s square tin. This fudge has so many calories I’m pretty much reduced to eating plain lettuce for the rest of the week, but it was worth it.
Coney Island Fudge
1 cup cream
1-1/2 cups sugar
4 oz. semisweet chocolate
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla
nuts (optional, but recommended)
Combine cream, sugar and chocolate. Stir just until chocolate melts, then add salt and bring to a boil. Turn heat down and cook until mixture reaches soft-boil stage on a candy thermometer.
Remove pan from heat and add butter and vanilla. Do not stir. Let mixture cool to lukewarm, about 110-degrees, then mix until creamy. Add nuts and mix again. Place in buttered pan and chill for several hours.