Chocolate Cherry Fudge
4 dozen pieces
1/3 cup maraschino cherries, finely chopped, well drained
1/2 cup butter
3 2/3 cups confectioners (powdered) sugar
1/2 cup cocoa or dark cocoa
1/4 cup evaporated milk
1/3 cup pecan pieces
1 teaspoon almond extract
maraschino cherry halves, well drained (optional)
slivered almonds (optional)
Line a 8" x 8" square baking pan with aluminum foil, extending foil at least 2" over edges of pan. Lightly press chopped cherries between layers of paper towels to remove excess moisture.
Place butter in medium microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on high (100%) 1 minute or until melted. Stir in powdered sugar, cocoa and evaporated milk until well blended. Microwave on high 1 1/2 minutes. Stir vigorously. Microwave on high an additional 30 seconds at a time, until mixture is hot, slightly thickened and smooth when stirred. Do not boil. Stir in chopped cherries, pecans and almond extract. Spread mixture into prepared pan. Cover. Refrigerate until firm.
Using the extended edges, lift fudge from pan. Place on cutting board. Peel off foil. Cut into squares. Garnish with cherry halves and slivered almonds pressed lightly onto fudge, if desired. Serve cold.
For best results, do not double recipe.
Store covered in refrigerator.
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