We’ve heard tales that some people buy hot fudge. In a store. We really don’t believe it. It’s just to easy to make delicious, 100% scratched, hot fudge in a few minutes at home that will beat anything on the supermarket shelves, so why would buy it? Don’t believe us? Well, give us just a few minutes of your time, and we’ll show you.
This recipe is based, somewhat, on the Hot Fudge recipe in The Joy of Chocolate, by Judy Olney. We modified it to make it richer — hot fudge is never too rich — and cut down the size to be better suited for us. Also, we include weight measurements for accuracy, as the amount of cocoa in a tablespoon is all over the map, depending on how fluffy or lumpy the cocoa is.
Just so you know, we’re working on making a dessert for later in the week, and this is just one component.
Dutch-processed cocoa is a darker, less bitter cocoa, made by processing the cocoa with an alkali to neutralize the acid. We like to use Valrhona brand. It costs more, but we think it’s worth it. If you can, use organic heavy cream, as it doesn’t contain anything but cream. Vanilla extract should be the real-deal. No imitation allowed.
Procedure in detail:
Melt butter and whisk in cocoa. Melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Once melted, remove from heat, add the cocoa, and whisk until the mixture is smooth. You don’t want any cocoa lumps in your hot fudge. Lumps are bad.
Bring to a boil. Add the chocolate, sugar, and heavy cream, and place back over medium heat. While whisking continuously to prevent scorching, bring the mixture to a boil. Immediately remove from the heat, and, if all the chocolate isn’t melted, whisk until it is. You don’t want chocolate lumps in your hot fudge. Lumps are bad.
Add salt and vanilla. Let the fudge cool for a minute or two, then whisk in the salt. After another minute of cooling, whisk in the vanilla. We let the hot fudge cool a bit because some of the flavor compounds in real vanilla are volatile and would evaporate away if the fudge is too hot when added.
Store. Transfer to a container and store in the refrigerator. To warm, simply heat in a microwave using 10-second bursts, or, place container in a pan of simmering water until heated through (Obviously, be sure that the container you’re using is heat-proof).
Now, taste the hot fudge. Smooth, right? Very chocolatey, right? Better than the stuff from the store, right? And, wasn’t it easy to make, too? We knew you could make this up and never want to buy that so-called hot fudge again, which is the whole idea of making your food from scratch. It’ll taste better, have ingredients you understand, and, even though it might be hot fudge, perhaps it’ll be a little bit better for you, too. Five chocolate-y stars!