Sunday, May 17, 2009

Flea Market And Fondue

It was another lovely day for flea market browsing. Sadly, I didn't find any treasures (or candle holders) that caught my eye this morning. The produce however, was amazing. I couldn't resist picking up some strawberries.

They're almost too pretty to eat. Almost, but not quite. We'll be enjoying them dipped in chocolate fondue for dessert tonight. Remember that recipe I promised to share with you? Actually, I have two recipes. One is easy, the other is incredibly easy. Before I give you both recipes, I want to give you a little bit of an explanation.

We love fondue. Not only because it tastes great, but because it's versatile and fun. We've even served it in place of cake at birthday parties. That being said, I'm not a fan of the typical chocolate fondue recipe which consists of dark, semi-sweet or milk chocolate and heavy cream. Even if you follow the instructions carefully, you can end up with grainy, lumpy fondue. And even if it's perfectly smooth, it tastes like Hershey's syrup to me. I wanted something thicker that would cling to the dipped items better and have a richer taste.

The solution? Hot fudge sauce. The first recipe is for a delicious, though slightly caramely, easy hot fudge sauce. The second recipe is for incredibly easy hot fudge sauce.

Easy Hot Fudge Sauce Fondue

  • 1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk

  • 4 ounces semisweet chocolate

  • 2 tablespoons butter

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • milk (optional)

In a heavy saucepan, combine the milk, chocolate and butter. Cook and stir over medium-low heat until chocolate is melted. Remove from the heat; stir in vanilla. If sauce becomes too thick, add milk, a few tablespoons full at a time, until desired consistency is achieved. Transfer to prewarmed fondue pot and serve with a variety of bite sized dippers.

Incredibly Easy Hot Fudge Sauce Fondue

  • 2 (11.5 ounce) jars hot fudge ice cream topping

  • milk

Heat hot fudge ice cream topping in a heavy saucepan over low heat until warm. Add milk, a few tablespoons full at a time until desired consistency is achieved. Transfer to prewarmed fondue pot and serve with a variety of bite sized dippers.

Okay, I know what you're thinking, premade hot fudge sauce? I'll give you a few good reasons to consider it. First, it's fast and easy if you need a last minute dessert. Second, you can find sugar free (and fat free) varieties which is perfect for anyone who is diabetic or has dietary restrictions.

But what about a fondue pot? Ours has a reservoir for gel fuel, which I like because we can use it anywhere, but electric ones are great, too. If you don't have one at all, you can still have fondue. Preheat a heavy, heat safe bowl by filling it with boiling water. Once the bowl has absorbed the heat, dump the water out, quickly dry the bowl and fill with your fondue sauce. We also like to use custard cups or ramekins for individual sized fondue.

Fondue forks? If you don't have any, wooden skewers are an easy substitute.

Fondue etiquette? Our set came with long forks and short forks. According to what the booklet says, you dip your items with the long fork and place them on your plate, but you eat them with the short fork. That way no one is putting a fork in their mouth and then back in the sauce.

Dipper ideas? We like to try all sorts of things, but some of our favorites are fruit, pound cake, pretzels, oreos, sugar wafers, cookies, and mini ice cream balls (pre-make the balls by scooping ice cream with a melon baller and then freezing on a cookie sheet).



5thsister said...

What a beautiful, magazine quality photo! Your post also made me hungry!

Purple Flowers said...

That looks like it would satisfy my sweet tooth. I love the combination of chocolate and strawberries!!

thamesarino said...

mmmmm... don't tell anyone but I honestly wanted to lick the screen! Fondue is NOT in my calorie allowance right now... but it does look super tasty! : )

Anonymous said...

What a beautiful, magazine quality dipping strawberries in chocoalte! Your pictures also made me hungry!