chocolates and cakes

Chocolate Fondue Recipe

 

Easy entertaining around chocolate fondues

Entertaining need not always be an extravagant affair. Making simple arrangements as a swirling fondue pot or a spouting fondue fountain is amusement by itself for guests. It is ideal for hosting a small informal gathering with friends by the fireside or a special date; either ways it is fun, also romantic. It is the easiest short-cut to making memories without breaking a sweat. Most of the work in putting together a fondue can be accomplished beforehand; quite evidently, not much is involved by way of last minute touch-

ups when guests arrive. Besides the simplistic set-up, fondues can be a profound way to encourage interaction among guests. The swirling pool of chocolate or the cascading chocolate fountain is hard to resist and while people wait for their turn for a dip of a morsel into the melted goodness there is no other way to fritter wait-time than interact with fellow guests. A fondue fountain or a fondue pot is not just an eyeful but is also a belly gratifying experience. In this space is an attempt made to familiarize you with fondue preparation along with a handful of party tips to pull it off with flair. Here is how:

An Easy Make-Ahead Fondue Recipe Idea:

Gather these ingredients first:

3/4 cup heavy whipping cream, reserve 1/4 cup to thin if fondue begins to thicken

4 bittersweet chocolate bars, chopped, 3 1/2 ounces each

2 tablespoons Frangelico or Amaretto liqueur, optional

1/4 cup finely chopped hazelnuts or almonds, optional

For garnishing a chocolate fondue:

Hazelnut or almond biscotti

Salted pretzel sticks

Cubed pound cake

Sliced bananas

Stem strawberries

Sectioned navel oranges

Ripe fresh diced pineapple

Procedure: Heat 1/2 cup cream in a heavy non-reactive saucepot over moderate heat until cream comes to a low boil. Keep stirring the cream to prevent burns at the bottom of the pan. Remove the pan from heat and add chocolate. Let the chocolate stand in hot cream for 3 to 5 minutes until it begins to melt. Then whisk the chocolate together with the cream until a smooth consistency is reached. Stir in the liqueur and chopped nuts and transfer the mix into a fondue pot. Set the mixing bowl on a rack above a small lit candle. For a dramatic touch take help of a fondue fountain apparatus that has a spout to issue forth the luxurious chocolate. Reserve some cream for later additions in case the liquid thickens up.

Arrange your favorite dippables in piles on a platter alongside chocolate fondue with fondue forks, bamboo skewers or sea food forks as utensils for dipping.

This recipe yields four to six servings.

For a more decadent variety of fondue try this recipe. This is again an easy-to-prepare fondue except it does not involve liqueur and is suited for tots at your party.

Chocolate-Almond Pudding Fondue:

Ingredients:

1/4 cup sugar

2 tablespoons cornstarch

2 cups milk

5 ounces milk chocolate chips

1 egg yolk, beaten

1/2 teaspoon almond extract

Fresh strawberries

Pound cake pieces, for garnish

Cheesecake pieces, for garnish

Cookies, for garnishing

Procedure: In a saucepan over medium heat, combine the sugar and cornstarch. Slowly add the milk whisking until combined. Cook until the mixture boils and starts to thicken. Stir in the chocolate. Temper the egg yolk with some of the chocolate mixture and whisk briskly to prevent scrambling of eggs. Then pour the egg-chocolate mix into the saucepan. Cook and stir until thick and smooth. Remove from heat and stir in the almond extract. Transfer to the fondue pot and serve it with pound cake chunks, cheesecake chunks and cookies.

Fondue Cooking and serving Tips for a Foolproof Fondue Party:

• Serve fondue food in bite size pieces so that they may be easily skewered or be held for hand-dipping.

• Use the right fondue pot as those in ceramic which is an ideal match for chocolate or other variants of dessert fondues.

• Chocolate being the primary ingredient for fondues one must be discreet and discerning in the choice of chocolates used for the purpose. Hershey s, Valhrona, Tobler, Lindt, and Callebaut are some of the recommended varieties of chocolates.

• Cook fondue separately on the stovetop and then serve it in the pot. Do not cook fondue in the pot itself.

• Keep the fondue pot no more than one-third to one-half filled with the chocolate.

• Fondue liquids need to be warm and not boiling. Keep the chocolate warm at a low temperature. 120 degrees F is an ambient temperature for dessert fondues.

• Be mindful of proper sanitation around fondues. Keep buffer reserve of skewers and fondue forks so that guests may not be tempted to dabble their fingers into the fondue. Remember it is a communal pot and hygiene is pivotal.

Setting an Ambience for an Enjoyable Fondue Exeperience:

• Keep several fondue pots depending on the number of invitees. Most pots can accommodate six dippers. Keep extra pots if you are serving different types of dessert fondue.

• Sheath your table with an easy-to-wipe cloth for easy cleaning. Fondues can get messy as food bites are carried from the pot to the plate.

• Serve guests with individual bowls for ease of handling food.

• Wine or beer is often served as accompaniments to a dessert fondue.

• Light a fire in your fireplace to give a cozy ambience and Swiss music at the background for a completely relaxing experience.

Fondues until sometime back was held as an anachronism. Most Americans thrust entertaining with fondue as a regressive idea, thinking it as an old-timer. Undoubtedly the historical roots of this recipe hark back to eighteenth century Switzerland from where it first originated. Deriving from the French verb fondre , meaning "to melt," fondue was a classic peasant dish. It received several makeovers as time flew and now fondue is back as the most unassuming fashion-statement in the culinary industry. It has come to be a retro-rage and the new buzz word for interactive dining at its best. With precedents to evince the comeback of fondues it is time to shed all cynicism if any, for this time-tested treat. Try these simple fondue recipes and watch your party swing!