Valentine's Chocolate Fondue

Valentine's Chocolate Fondue Recipe


I always think of Valentine's day as the end of fondue season - no white shoes after Labor Day, no fondue recipes after Valentine's. A bit strict perhaps - but bubbling pots of fragrant cheese and silky dark chocolate only lend themselves to certain types of blistery weather. Their molten goodness seems to be able to warm you slowly from the inside out. A pot of chocolate fondue on Valentine's Day is the perfect way to get cozy with someone - and kiss winter goodbye with a sloppy, chocolate-smudged smile.

If you don't have a fondue set, you can do it all stove-side. We use our fondue pot a few times a year, so if you think you might make fondue more than once or twice, it really is worth the investment. Spend a little extra money and look for a good, versatile pot that will last a long time. I also recommend picking a color that won't date itself immediately - you are going to have this thing forever. Mine is white, enamel-line cast iron - if you want to personalize it a bit, keep your eyes peeled for fun, vintage dipping forks at flea markets and yard sales. For cheese and chocolate fondues you want to look for a thick-bottomed pot - this helps to diffuse the heat, which helps prevent scorching.

Different things to dip in chocolate fondue:

Fruits: sliced bananas (grilled + caramelized, even better), apples, pears, peaches, pineapples, dried fruit, citrus sections, strawberries, cherries, raspberries, blackberries.

Cakes and other sweet things: angel food cake, graham crackers, marshmallows, tiny brownies, tiny cookies, lady fingers, shortbread, amaretti, biscotti, crystallized ginger chunks, or meringues.

Have other ideas? Leave them in the comments.

Infusing: To make chocolate fondue the technique is pretty straight-forward. You simmer heavy cream and then stir in chopped chocolate over heat. There is the opportunity to infuse the heavy cream in the beginning with whatever accent flavors you dream up - like you do when you are making and ice-cream or gelato base. Some ideas: espresso powder, spices, herbs, fruit purees, or zests. If you are using herbs like mint, you might need to strain them out of the cream, and return the pot to heat before adding the chocolate.

Have fun! Keep your dipping ingredients bite-sized - no bigger than 1-inch square, and spring for good quality chocolate.

Oh! And one last thing. I'm going to Amsterdam next week! Debra from culiblog has hooked me up with all the must-see destinations - I can't wait to share my travels w/ lots of pics and hopefully a recipe or two. Let me know if any of you have any Amsterdam recs for me. I've only been once and it was on an extended lay-over on our way to East Africa....

 
 
 
 

Valentine's Chocolate Fondue Recipe

1 pound of premium semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, well chopped
1 1/2 cups of organic heavy cream

Set aside the chopped chocolate. Pour the cream into a medium, thick-bottomed saucepan (or double boiler if you have one) over low heat. Bring the cream to a simmer and add the chocolate. Stir until the chocolate is melted.

Transfer the chocolate to a fondue pot and enjoy.

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Your Comments


FilmStocker
February 10, 2006

Thanks for the recipe. I love your ideas for things to dip into the chocolate.

Figs--either fresh or dried--are also divine for chocolate fondue... Anything and everything tastes better when it's covered in chocolate!

Film Stock

 

Amy
February 10, 2006

A little booze is nice too in chocolate fondue. I've even found the same Kirsch you use in cheese fondue works well with chocolate. Love the crytalized ginger chunk idea as a dipper. I usually use fruit and pound cake.

 

fanny
February 10, 2006

Oh my god Heidi, you're tempting me. I'm currently only eating fruits, vegs, whole grains and beans and though i feel great i wouldn't say no to this chocolate fondue!
Love
Fanny

 

Jaime
February 10, 2006

How perfect! My boyfriend and I have a tradition of making fodnue for Valentine's Day instead of going out, and this will fit in with our at-home celebration beautifully. (I second the above comment about adding booze.) Thank you!

 

Michelle
February 10, 2006

Pieces of belgium waffles for dipping! My fav...

 

Three Layer Cake
February 10, 2006

yummmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmy

 

Heather
February 10, 2006

Alcohol, like creme de menthe, can seize up your chocolate if you're not careful. Heidi, do you have any tips about when and how when adding the liquor?

 

Evonne
February 10, 2006

There's a fondue restaurant near me that makes little cream cheese balls (I'm pretty sure it isn't sweetened) that they roll in cinnamon and sugar to be dipped in chocolate fondue. It's SO good. Almost like a chocolate-dipped bite of cheesecake. They also cut Snickers bars into little bite-size slices. Maybe dipping Snickers in more chocolate is overkill, but I liked it.

 

E.Claire
February 10, 2006

Dried mangos are unreal when dipped in dark chocolate. Dried apricots come close. Another good thing to flavor the chocolate with, if you like hazelnuts, is a spoonful of some gianduja or Nuttella. (Gianduja is a more pure kind of nutella, without as much sugar.)

 

kathy cleary
February 10, 2006

small chunks of fresh coconut are wonderful and i think pieces of kiwi fruit would be very tasty too

 

PatL
February 10, 2006

There are still MONTHS of blustery weather in my neck of the woods, so this recipe has legs up here! :o)

 

Sharlin
February 10, 2006

Mini pretzels or small pretzel rods are brilliant as chocolate fondue dippers, for that salty-sweet combination. Chunks of pound cake are lovely, too, and some people also love small ginger snap cookies as dippers. Pecans and hazelnuts, especially the candied ones, are great too.

 

GastroChick
February 10, 2006

Fondue is perfect for Valentines day I will definately give your recipe a try- thanks

 

Rose Marie
February 10, 2006

Now who would say no to chocolate dipped strawberries? Not me.

 

RisaG
February 10, 2006

I made chocolate fondue on New Years Eve and it was great. I couldn't get really excellent chocolate (I live in the boonies and couldn't go to my favorite gourmet place 45 minutes away) so I used Ghiradelli from the supermarket and a tiny bit of Scharfen Berger I had left in the cabinet. I dipped strawberries, 2 kinds of melon, and broken cookies and marshmallows into it. Everyone loved it. It was a huge hit in my house.

Since I live in NJ, and it is icey and horrid here we can lift the "no fondue" rule after Valentines' Day because it would make us nice and toasty warm during the whole long winter.

Great article. I used less heavy cream than your recipe. Where is it from? Which book?

 

Kat
February 10, 2006

Have a wonderful time in Amsterdam!

 

Kat
February 10, 2006

Hope you have a wonderful time in Amsterdam!

 

vijay
February 10, 2006

it is fantastic

 

Evan
February 10, 2006

There is the most divine chocolate shop in Amsterdam next door to my favorite arch/design bookshop: Nijhof & Lee. Must go!

 

From Our Kitchen
February 10, 2006

My favorite thing to dip in chocolate fondue is pound cake. I've also had cheesecake, which is great too. Another tasty thing to do with fondue is pour a little caramel on top of the chocolate, that is really good. Mmmm...

 

Robin
February 10, 2006

Heidi,
Re: your trip to Amsterdam . . .
One miniscule takeaway that stands head and shoulders above nearly everything in A'dam -- Small World Cafe just off the Harlemmerstraat in the Jordaan. Shawn, the owner, is a miracle worker with grilled vegetable sandwiches and American-style desserts that keep the expat community happy through the long, dark Dutch winters. (I've now survived 14!) Another not-to-be-missed experience: the organic market on Saturday morning at the Noordermarkt. Within walking distance of Small World.

One other tip if you have time -- try not to miss The Hague. Often overlooked for flashier A'dam, it's got some great and inventive restaurants -- two favorites are Wox and Spijs.

 

KC
February 11, 2006

Seedless grapes make great dippers. They are neat and easy to eat, and when you bite down there is a burst of juice that blends perfectly with the chocolate.

 

ProgGrrl
February 11, 2006

RE amsterdam -

From one foodie to another I'm now going to rattle off some old favorite places in that fun city - only problem is, I haven't been there since 1998 and don't know if these places still exist. I'm sure your local friends will know.

-- There is anunbelievable gelato place, run by a family of italian immigrants, pretty near the vondelpark. I think its right near a gigantic outdoor market/flea market that is very famous. All the gelato is made on premises the old fashioned way; I recall about 15-20 flavors are available and all delicious.
-- A ridiculously inexpensive, truly delicious falafel, heaped with all-you-can-eat extras from a salad bar, can be had just across the street from the gorgeous art nouveau treasure, the movie house Theater Tuschinski.
-- I have such fond, fond memories of a small cheese shop and a small olive oil shop in the Jordaan district (Jewish; where Anne Frank house is). My memory of both shops is that they let you taste everything. And the cheeses! Oh my, you're gonna love it. Aged goudas with added herbs/spices. Just fantastic. As I used to tell my American friends: "the Dutch and the French don't export the REALLY good stuff..."

Have fun!

 

Ivonne
February 11, 2006

Valentine's Day and chocolate ... meant to go together!

 

eva
February 12, 2006

Hi Heidi,
the fondue sounds great, jsut recovering from a massive cheese one we had after a day on the hills yesterday so might wait with the chocolate one for a while but we have a lot of cold, dark times still in scotland :-)...

regarding amsterdam, have a brilliant time, you will absolutely love it. try to get an indonesian meal as that is brilliant food and dont miss the albert cuijp market...this is also where the gelato place is progrrl mentioned which is next to the sarphatipark (or perhaps there are two?) also...try the zotte, raamstraat 29, which is a belgian tasting place which does a really nice cheeseboard to accompany all the really nice, speciality beers...have a fab time and cant wait to read your post on it!
Eva

 

Josh
February 12, 2006

In Amsterdam there is a cafe called Carrols. They do a steak dish with blue cheese sauce that is amazing. Also there is a take away chain called Sirinam Express. They do a roti kip fillet (chicken breast fillet currey) that is very unique and tastey.

 

stef
February 12, 2006

what an excellent reminder, thanks! we stopped "fonduing" 4 years ago when we found out about hubby's cheese allergies, but of course valentine's is the perfect day for chocolate! he'll be in for a delicious surprise -- glad i came here today.

 

Anonymous
February 12, 2006

I'd recommend a place called Herengracht 435 in the Jordaan

 

Maggie
February 13, 2006

Rice Krispy Treats and pineapple. Unless I can get really good strawberries, I like pineapple dipped in gooey, dripping chocolate better. And there's something about the texture contrast with the Rice Krispy treats that makes that combination wonderful.

 

mj
February 13, 2006

I love dipping mini-cream puffs! Why not go all out? But bananas are great, too, and then I freeze the left-overs together.

 

Kim
February 13, 2006

Hi! We visited the Netherlands last winter. Lovely time. Enjoy the Van Gough museum if you have time, it's amazing.

There's a great veg/vegan restaurant in Amsterdam called de Bolhoed (Prinsengracht 60, in the Jordaan) you may want to try. Was too full to try dessert there, so maybe you'll plan better than I did and let us know!?

Also, I second another poster who said the Indonesian food is superb. Sama Sebo did a vegetarian rijstafel meal for us. (It's traditionally a chicken-based buffet-style dinner.) I'd try to make reservations, though. It's quite a popular spot and I think we were lucky to get squeezed into the bar area for dinner.

 

Tabitha
February 13, 2006

I hope this isn't redundant, but candied orange slices and candied apricots are amazing dipped in dark chocolate. We had many of these made for our wedding night and they were a big hit in the romance dept. (Ladies and gentlemen, since its Valentine’s, just a reminder that a rose petal bath never hurts either). All of the above go really well with Toad Hollow Vineyard’s sweet sparkling wine, Risque or a Spanish Cava. And something I just thought of i might try with that fondue recipe are heart shaped, red sprinkled sugar cookies.

 

Quteck
February 14, 2006

Here are some tips from Holland:
- try kingsize peanuts in your fondue. Very nice, M&M-like.
- those soft mint 'cushions' are also well-tasting with a chocolate layer.
- last but not least: if available, try small chunks of marzipan/marchpane (almond paste and egg whites). Chocolate-covered marzipan is traditional food overhere, but even here it's not always available.

 

Anonymous
February 14, 2006

Make sure if using strawberries in fondue you use white choclate

strawberries and white chocolate

pineapple and plain chocolate

 

Heidi
February 14, 2006

Happy Valentine's Day everyone, thanks for the fantastic suggestions (both re: fondue + Amsterdam!)

Has anyone tried adding a bit of alcohol to the cream before adding the chopped chocolate with good results? In the past I've gradually whisked in a tablespoon or so at the the end, when the chocolate is smooth and melty without issue -the way you would whisk oil into a vinaigrette....

 

Anonymous
February 14, 2006

I want to say cool

 

Chocoholic
February 14, 2006

Thanks for the recipe! It was delish! I tried making the fondue with milk chocolate instead of the semisweet/bittersweet kind, and thought it was great. Used pound cake, brownies, and fruit as dippables. Yummmmmm!

 

Tom
February 14, 2006

It's a little on the expensive side, but to give your fondue a hint of orange flavor you can buy a small bottle of Grand Marnier to add to your chocolate recipe. I used it in a recipe with my chocolate fountain on New Year's and it came out amazingly well.

 

Ralph
February 14, 2006

Hmmm, Amsterdam, huh? I'd recommend smoking some quality marijuana and then eating. When in Rome, do as the Romans. When in Amsterdam, who gives a damn!

 

Anonymous
February 14, 2006

shortbread cookies

 

Carlitos
February 15, 2006

Cannabis recipes are very popular, you can use it in several ways, even as a spice. Don't miss that chance!

 

lyndsey
April 13, 2006

i had a lot of fun using exotic fruits! awesome for expermentation. i used frozen passion fruit, grapefruit, starfruit, kiwki, rambutens etc... great in a three chocolate mix, 1 part dark, 1 part white, 1 part milk chocolate.
i also love adding a little brazillian evaporated milk!

 

Ann
June 19, 2006

Seedless grapes in chocolate are my favorites as well ...I never wait for Valentines Day to make this fondue

 

mje
July 18, 2006

how do you know how much to make? I need to feed 10 people......