Like the name says, this stuff is seriously the best ever hot fudge sauce. What it doesn't say is that it's so easy you'll hardly believe it!
This is almost embarrassing - but we're friends, right? Every word in the title of this recipe, Best Ever Hot Fudge Sauce, is true, although I didn't include the most important word...
EASY. As in super easy!
The reason I feel a little sheepish is because it's so easy it's actually embarrassing to even call it a recipe. Am I exaggerating? Nope; this is how it works - throw all the ingredients in a blender except the half and half which is heated in the microwave till it's good and hot, then quickly added to the blender contents. Cover and push the ON button. Less than 2 minutes later you'll be staring at the most luscious, deep, dark, rich, silky-smooth chocolate sauce you've ever had the pleasure of meeting.
See what I mean? Embarrassingly simple. But you know what? I won't tell a soul if you don't. We'll just keep this magically delicious, super simple secret to ourselves and enjoy the accolades, okay?
Oh, and speaking of secrets; there is one important little detail I need to share regarding this recipe. Use a good quality chocolate. It can be semisweet or bittersweet, I've had good results with both. Good quality chocolate chips will work as well bars of fine chocolate, like the French Broad chef's tablet that you see in the pics.
What's French Broad chocolate? If you don't live in North Carolina or haven't visited Asheville, NC, you may not be familiar with The French Broad Chocolate Lounge. It's a one-of-a-kind, charming little chocolate shop located in the heart of Asheville. There's almost always a line spilling out the door because the stuff they have is absolutely amazing. I think this review from YELP sums up The French Broad Chocolate Lounge perfectly:
"If I could give 6 stars, I would. I am an avid chocolate lover, and thusly, I eat chocolate as often as possible and certainly when I am on vacation. I can honestly say that this is easily in my top 3 chocolate experiences, and in my top 10 foodie experiences. The line can get long...stay strong!!! It is worth the wait. Charming place, fantastic backstory, they pay their workers a living wage, they source as locally as possible, and their staff was nice. But the chocolate. Oh, the chocolate. I had this milk chocolate mousse concoction that was layered with a peanut butter cream served in a small milk bottle. Literally one of the best things I have ever put in my mouth. I will be making the 5-hour drive back to Asheville as soon as possible for this one place."
Scott and I became familiar with French Broad Chocolate last month when we attended an amazing blogging conference in Asheville called Food Blog Forum. The food scene in this beautiful mountain town is phenomenal and Asheville literally rolled out the red carpet for the attendees of the conference. We were able to personally meet many of the local proprietors, chefs, farmers, vinters and craft beer makers. We were wined and dined beyond anything I'd imagined and were taken on a private culinary tour of the famous Biltmore House. The tour was followed by an incredible dinner prepared by local chefs and served in a large white tent on a hillside overlooking the lovely Biltmore.
Everyone we met in Asheville was so friendly and hospitable, but I must say, we really enjoyed meeting the folks from The French Broad Chocolate Shop. Jael, one of the owners, couldn't have been sweeter and the samples of their wonderful chocolate creations were unbelievable; it's the stuff that chocolate lover's dreams are made of! When I was looking through the swag (goodie) bags from the conference and noticed large bars of their bittersweet chocolate, well let's just say - I let out a little squeal and began planning what I would do with it. I knew for sure that some of it would go into this wonderful chocolate sauce.
I've made this dessert sauce a zillion times, but I have to say the French Broad chocolate took it way over the top. If you've got a get-together coming up and you don't have time for a fancy dessert, don't worry, no one will care. Pick up some good vanilla ice cream and whip up a batch of this Best Ever Hot Fudge Sauce. Everyone will think you're a culinary whiz for making this heavenly, homemade chocolate sauce - just don't tell them about the missing word that starts with an e.
P.S. French Broad Chocolate can be found in specialty shops all over the U.S. and can also be ordered directly from frenchbroadchocolates.com.
Disclosure: We were given French Broad Chocolate at the conference, but have not been compensated for this post. The opinions are our own.
- 6 ounces good quality semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate coarsely chopped (you also can use good quality semi-sweet chocolate chips)
- ¼ cup sugar
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste or vanilla extract
- a pinch of sea salt
- ½ cup half & half a bit more to thin, if needed
Place all ingredients except half and half into a blender container.
Measure half and half into a medium-size microwave-safe bowl or measuring cup. Heat in the microwave on high power for 75-90 seconds or until it's boiling. Make sure to use a largeenough container to allow the liquid to boil without rising over the top.
Immediately pour over contents into a standard blender container and cover with the blender center cap removed. Holding several thicknesses of paper toweling over the center hole (to allow the steam to escape), blend on medium-high speed for 1 minute. Remove cover carefully and scrape down sides of blender container with a rubber spatula. Cover and blend again for another minute. The sauce should be smooth, silky and thick. Depending on the type of chocolate you use, the sauce may be too thick at this point. If you want to thin it a bit, add more half and half, 2-3 teaspoons at a time and blend briefly till combined. Continue until desired consistency is reached.
Store in the refrigerator in an airtight container or glass jar. Keeps for 1-2 weeks. Sauce will get thicker when chilled, but will return to a looser consistency when warmed. Heat before serving on medium power in the microwave, stirring every 15 seconds until desired temperature.
Makes approximately 1 cup of chocolate sauce
*Half and half can also be heated on the stovetop over medium heat until boiling. Stir frequently.
Don't attempt this recipe if you don't have a standard blender with a center cap that can be removed.