Friday, June 20, 2014

Strawberries and Chocolate Fondue with Homemade Creme Fraiche

This Sunday at at the Fairmount Neighborhood Farmers Market, you can look forward to a selection of pastured chicken and grass-fed lamb cuts from Fair Valley Farm and beautiful fresh cut flower bouquets from Tiger Lily Art CompanyGood Food Easy at Sweetwater Farm will have the following offerings: 

Strawberries, available by the flat for $32 (dip in chocolate fondue)
Leeks, scallions, baby stalks of garlic and garlic whistles, also called scapes (try in pesto)
Anaheim and poblano chile peppers and some early tomatoes (try this fresh pasta dish)
Artichokes, baby beets, and kohlrabi (try this carrot and kohlrabi salad with harissa)
New potatoes, cauliflower and broccoli (roasted cauliflower is delicious)
Carrots, summer squash, and cucumbers
Chard, collard greens, and kale (use those stems for pickles)
Fresh herbs (basil, oregano, sage, thyme) plus home-grown lemon grass!!
Lettuce, including ready-to-eat bagged mix
Cherries & Blenheim apricots (from Washington)

From Sweet Creek Foods:
Dill Pickles, Chili Dill Pickles, Bread 'N Butter Pickles, Pickle Relish
Blueberry, Strawberry, Blackberry, & Raspberry Fruit Spreads
Enchilada Sauce and Salsa
From SLO Farm: Applesauce

Bean and Grains
Sweetwater Farm's polenta and cornmeal!
Assorted beans and grains from Camas Country Mill

This will likely be the last week of a spectacular strawberry season. Do not let the opportunity pass to indulge in some chocolate dipped strawberries. For a recent birthday celebration I wanted to make this ultimate chocolate fondue recipe, but it required creme fraiche, and rather than making yet another trip to the store, I tried my hand at making my own

The amazing activities of microbes never cease to inspire me, and now that I have witnessed how easily a spoonful of buttermilk bacteria can transform a jar of liquid cream into a lovely, tangy custard, I'm kicking myself for not having made creme fraiche every week of my adult life.

The tanginess of the creme fraiche made for the best chocolate fondue I've ever had. And just as the lactobacilli devoured the carbohydrates in the cream, so the pack of eleven year old girls devoured the strawberries and fondue with gusto.

Chocolate Fondue
adapted from Scharffen Berger
makes 2 cups, serves 8 to 12
6 ounces dark chocolate chips (60% or more cacao)
1/2 cup creme fraiche (recipe below)
3 Tbsp butter
1 tsp vanilla extract
Strawberries and other fruits, small pieces of cake and butter cookies (for dipping)

In a small fondue pot, combine the chocolate, crème frâiche, butter and extract. Place over the fondue burner using either a votive candle or low sterno heat and allow the chocolate to melt. Stir until fondue is smooth.

To serve, keep warm while guests dip fruit, cookies, or pieces of cake in the fondue.

Your chocolate fondue keeps up to a week in the refrigerator. Reheat over very low heat before serving.

Homemade Creme Fraiche (from food52)
makes 1/2 cup

1/2 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoons buttermilk

Seek out a good quality heavy cream that is pasteurized, not ultra-pasteurized. If you can only find ultra-pasteurzed, it will work, but will take longer to thicken. To start, pour 1/2 cup of heavy cream into a non-reactionary container such as a glass Mason jar. Next, add one tablespoon of buttermilk to the heavy cream. Cover the jar with a lid and shake until everything is thoroughly combined. Loosely cover the heavy cream mixture with a tea towel or moist paper towel and allow it to sit out on your kitchen counter for 12-24 hours. Ideally the temperature in your kitchen will be from 72 to 78 degrees. Mine took a full 24 hours to thicken. After it's at the preferred consistency, transfer it to your fridge. The creme fraiche will be good for up to 2 weeks.


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This is my favorite recipe,i am a chocoholic. Thank you.