By Request


Hard chocolate
sauce made easy

I spent Memorial Day playing with chocolate. There are worse things. Meredith Prock e-mailed for a chocolate sauce that hardens when poured on ice cream, and the only way to guarantee results was to try out a few recipes and taste. Repeatedly.

We now have a half-dozen chocolate-covered strawberries in the refrigerator, quite a bit of French vanilla ice cream in the freezer (standing by for further testing, of course) and three types of leftover chocolate sauce, including one that failed as a hardening agent, but tastes really good.

At any rate, the solution turned out to be quite simple. It came from Mark Okumura, pastry chef for Alan Wong's restaurants.

It has just two ingredients: bittersweet chocolate, which is sold in 4-ounce bars in supermarkets, and cocoa butter, which is not. Pure cocoa butter is sold at Hans Weiler in Kalihi (847-2210), in a 4-ounce jar marked "natural moisturizer," but do not be alarmed. It is 100 percent edible, with the added benefit of moisturizing skin, which gives you something to do with the leftovers. A jar costs $5.90 and is enough to make 2 pounds of chocolate sauce.

Okumura's recipe also can be used to dip ice cream bars (he uses it to make Haupia Sorbet "Popsicles") or frozen bananas. And it makes beautiful chocolate-dipped strawberries.

By the way, you can use semi-sweet chocolate instead of bittersweet if you prefer the taste. It's cheaper.

Hard Chocolate Sauce

4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, broken in pieces
1 ounce cocoa butter

Melt chocolate and cocoa butter together over a double boiler, stirring until smooth. Sauce may be used immediately or after cooling slightly. Pour over ice cream to create a hard chocolate shell. Dip ice cream bars or frozen bananas in sauce. Dip strawberries or other fruit (oranges are especially good) in sauce and place on a plate lined with wax paper. Refrigerate until chocolate hardens. Makes about 3/4 cup.

If you'd rather not have to track down cocoa butter, this recipe, adapted from the Web site, uses regular butter and vegetable oil instead. It makes a thinner sauce that is fine for pouring over ice cream, but doesn't work as well as a dip.

Dairy Queen-Style Chocolate Sauce

8 ounces (2/3 cup) semi-sweet chocolate chips
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter
1/4 cup vegetable oil

Melt chocolate and butter together over a double boiler, stirring until smooth. Remove from heat and stir in oil. Sauce will harden when poured over ice cream. Makes about 1 cup.

Note: Chocolate may be melted in a microwave, but be careful of burning. Place chocolate pieces in a glass measuring cup and microwave on high 30 seconds. Stir and microwave again if necessary.

Okumura also provided this recipe for passion fruit sorbet, for Angelina Flores. For those who don't have access to fresh passion fruit, Hans Weiler sells purée by the quart.

Lilikoi Sorbet

1 cup sorbet syrup (recipe follows)
1/2 cup unsweetened lilikoi purée
3/4 cup water
Lemon juice, to taste (if the lilikoi is too sweet)
>> Sorbet syrup:
1 cup water
1/4 cup corn syrup
3 tablespoons sugar

To make syrup: Boil water, corn syrup and sugar 5 minutes. Cool.

To make sorbet: Combine ingredients in an ice-cream machine and freeze according to manufacturer's directions.

Nutritional information unavailable.

Food Stuffs: Morsels

Send queries along with name and phone number to:
"By Request," Honolulu Star-Bulletin,
500 Ala Moana, No. 7-210, Honolulu 96813.
Or send e-mail to

Asterisk (*) after nutritional analyses in the
Body & Soul section indicates calculations by
Joannie Dobbs of Exploring New Concepts,
a nutritional consulting firm.

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