Chocolate for Dinner

When my kids were little, we would address valentines to classmates, deliver flowers to neighbors and decorate the house with hearts and snowflakes (cut from white coffee filters). For dinner, I would make their favorite meal: dessert! Why not? I'd melt chocolate (the good stuff) and let them line up their dippers. They thought dessert for dinner was magical. Of course, I'd fed them a protein-packed after-school snack and served "dinner" early so they could get their sugar wiggles out before bed. Delightful!

Happy Valentine's Day! 

Chocolate Fondue

2 cups heavy cream

1 pound premium semisweet chocolate (recommended: Lindt or Callebaut)

1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract

1 tablespoon brandy

Sprinkles, colored sugar 

Strawberries, bananas, pineapple, brownies, waffles, marshmallows, walnuts, Oreos, pound cake, pretzels or any other dipping item of your choice! Be sure to add small bowls of sprinkles and (more) sugar to roll your dipper in. Get creative!

  1. Put approximately four inches of water in a saucepan and bring to a slow boil. Place a mixing bowl on top and pour in the heavy cream. Let heat. Or, use a double boiler. Meanwhile, break up or chop the chocolate into small pieces. When the cream feels hot to the touch, add chocolate and whisk until smooth. Whisk in vanilla and brandy. 
  2. Pour into the fondue pot and light the handy fuel underneath. Keep the flame low as not to burn the fondue. Arrange dippers on a platter and enjoy.

The history of Valentine’s Day goes back to third century Rome with the execution of a priest named Valentinus known today as St. Valentine. Every February 14th, millions across the globe send their loved ones heart-shaped cards and Valentine’s chocolates to express their love and affection. 

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