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I’m Dreaming of a Chocolate Christmas – Fun with Fondue, Issue #70
December 18, 2019
Hi,

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas! This time of year can be magical with the lights and the snow and the smells. But it can also be hectic and stressful with last-minute gifts, school programs, and all the parties.

If you are looking for last-minute food options your holiday get-together, fondue is an easy and quick solution that is sure to be a hit! It is also the perfect way to ring in the new year. Need some inspiration? Read below.


Monthly Fondue Tip

How NOT to Mess Up Chocolate Fondue

When making chocolate fondue, you must be careful with your melting temperature. While it may be tempting to put chocolate in a microwaveable bowl and cook it on high for a few minutes or put it on direct heat on the stovetop, you’ll end up burning your chocolate or you'll turn it into a lumpy and grainy mess.

Once burnt, you can’t fix it. It's done. Burnt. Bad. You’ll need to get new chocolate.

So…. How do you melt chocolate? There are three ways: in a double-boiler, in the microwave, or in your fondue pot.

Double-Boiler

A double-boiler is basically a pot within a pot, with water in the bottom/larger pot. The upper/smaller pot is where you put the chocolate you want to melt (broken up in smallish pieces). Because the chocolate is heated indirectly, you can't burn it. You'll need to use a dry spoon to stir your chocolate. You can keep reusing the same spoon (and leave whatever chocolate is on it), but don’t rinse your spoon or do anything that would add water or moisture as it will make the mixture clump.

Microwave

If you want to use your microwave, do it slowly and always on the lowest power setting.

  1. Break the chocolate into chunks (the smaller the better, but no need to go crazy)
  2. Melt it on low for about 30 seconds at a time
  3. Check, stir, and repeat until completely melted (the final intervals will likely be shorter)
  4. Time will vary depending on your microwave. Some people may be able to get away with 60-second intervals (especially for the first couple of minutes) but as your chocolate starts melting, reduce the time, and go with 10-second bursts (always on low power).

No matter which way you choose, it’s important to stir your chocolate even though a quick visual inspection may indicate that your chunks haven’t melted much. Chocolate can melt from the inside-out in the microwave, so looks can be deceiving.

As with the double-boiler method, stir your chocolate with a dry spoon. You can keep reusing the same spoon (and leave whatever wet/dry chocolate is on it), but don’t rinse your spoon or do anything that would add water to your chocolate as it will make the mixture have clumps.

In Your Fondue Pot

The tealight can burn your chocolate, so if you want to melt it directly in your fondue pot (or in a saucepan on the stovetop), start by adding the liquid the recipe calls for, which is normally cream. By warming the liquid first to just under boiling and then adding the broken-up pieces of chocolate a little bit at a time, you won't risk burning the chocolate. Just be sure to keep stirring.


Monthly Recipe Recommendation for the Holiday Season

Fondue as a Snack or Appetizer

If you have people walking around and snacking on various things, then the following cheese fondue recipe with red cranberries and green chives, served with pieces of French baguette, green and red apple slices, pepperoni slices, and steamed broccoli florets would be wonderfully festive:

Festive Cheese Fondue

Fondue as an Entrée

If your family wants to sit down, relax, and laugh over a delicious meal, then I recommend broth or oil fondue. Basically, you cook pieces of meat in either a flavorful broth or hot oil, then you dip these cooked meat pieces into one of several dips. You can serve broth/oil fondue with side dishes like salad, potatoes, etc.

You've never hosted an oil or broth fondue dinner? I've got all of the information you need, complete with a perfectly-paired menu (appetizers, three dips, side dishes and dessert), tips and organized grocery list here:

BestFondue volume 2: Greek-Inspired Broth Fondue
BestFondue volume 3: French-Inspired Oil Fondue

Fondue as a Dessert

You can't go wrong with chocolate fondue. Toblerone is a popular chocolate choice over the holidays, so why not use it to make chocolate fondue? And to give it an even more of a Christmas-y spin, you can add some broken candy canes or peppermint candies.

Toblerone Fondue Recipe

Serve it with a selection of fresh fruit or dessert bites (donuts, marshmallows, pretzels, etc.)


Food For Thought

“Seize the moment. Remember all those women on the 'Titanic' who waved off the dessert cart.”

- Erma Bombeck

That's it for now. See you next year! Hope your holidays are fantastic!

Feel free to visit the site and browse through the collection of fondue recipes.

You'll hear back from me next month as we prepare for back to school!

Until then, be careful with open flames and have fun with fondue!

Regards,

Caroline Begin

www.bestfondue.com
www.recettesdefondue.ca (en français)

P.S. New to meat fondue? Get the complete guide to hosting a Greek-Inspired beef broth fondue dinner today!

BestFondue volume 2: Greek-Inspired Broth Fondue

P.P.S. Or try fondue bourguignonne. Get the complete guide to hosting a French-Inspired beef oil fondue dinner today!

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