Tag Archives: Chocolate

Serendipity – Washington, DC (Georgetown)

Erin has been wanting to go to Serendipity since it came to DC last summer and we finally had the chance to over the weekend. Brought to DC after it’s New York City fame, Serendipity is a restaurant that specializes in dessert and is known for their famous Frozen Hot Chocolate. We were in Georgetown over the weekend during the late afternoon and I thought this would be the perfect time to try out the new addition to the Georgetown restaurant scene.

Normally, you can only get in with reservations that are made well in advance, but the chilly Sunday afternoon must have helped us since we got in right at 7:00p. Walking into the restaurant feels like you’re entering Alice’s Wonderland – the light fixtures are all different, some small and some large, some high and some low, the clock is extremely oversized, there are extreme colors on the walls and the menu is cartoonishly large. We were seated in the front area of the restaurant – the bar area with a couple of tables that reminded me of an old school diner. The wait staff were professionally dressed wearing shirts with ties and were very cordial.

After looking at the menu, we decided that we were definitely going to save room for a dessert (at a place like this, you have to make your meal decision based on what comes afterward, right??). The menu was very vast; everything from salads, to burgers and sandwiches, to chili and matzo ball soup, to pasta and filet mignon, and even foot-long hot dogs. While variety can be a good thing, it can also be hard to make a decision and typically leans towards no real specialty in the restaurant. Well, I already said the specialty was dessert so I think you know where I’m going with this… We ordered sandwiches (something we hardly ever do but we’d already has brunch so anything healthy about the day was already out the window!) and they were just ok. The cheese on Erin’s wasn’t melted all the way and mine was pretty bland with cold sweet potato fries.

After dinner, we took a long look at the big, literally and figuratively, dessert menu. Since I had never been to the NYC location, I thought it would only be appropriate to start out my Serendipity dessert-trying with a Frozen Hot Chocolate. Yes, it was confusing to me at first too but it all made sense as soon as I tasted it. The dish that resembles an ice cream sundae with straws coming out of it was most similar to the texture of a milkshake and a slupree put together. It tasted great – like a hot chocolate that was in an icy dessert form. We ordered the “for one” size and split it; it was plenty big enough for the two of us. Other than this traditional flavor, they had many others along with a wide variety of other ice cream desserts and sundaes that all came in both a small and a large size.

All-in-all, the food here was not that great; there are definitely some different things on the menu that you’re not likely to find at other places around DC but the focus is really on the chocolate. Will we be back? Yes, and we’ll probably come back to try a different kind of entrée next time, but we’ll definitely be back for dessert. My suggestion to you would be to make a late reservation and head there after a nice dinner in the city for a Frozen Hot Chocolate and a cup of coffee or espresso.

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Chocolate Covered Matzo

Ingredients:
4-6 whole matzos
8 oz butter
2 cups packed light brown sugar
1 pinch of salt
1 bag (2 cups) chocolate chips, good quality

Directions:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Cover a large baking pan with aluminum foil, including the edges and line with wax paper on top. This will ease the pain of clean-up from the caramel spill-overs. Place the matzo in the pan in a single layer. If necessary, break to cover the entire surface.

In a medium pot melt the butter and sugar and bring to a boil. Keep pot boiling for an additional 3 minutes while stirring. Remove from heat and add the pinch of salt. Pour the mixture over the matzos and spread evenly. Place the pan in the oven and bake for 10-12 minutes. The mixture will bubble and spread evenly over the matzos. Keep an eye on the matzos to make sure they do not burn.

Remove the matzos from the oven and sprinkle with chocolate chips. Wait for 1-2 minutes, until chocolate chips soften, and spread over matzos. Place matzos in the freezer for 10-15 minutes in order for the chocolate to harden. Remove from the freezer and break into pieces.

Review:
This sweet snack is a great alternative to cookies or cake and will always have people asking for the recipe. We recently had a Hanukkah Party at my place and someone brought over what everyone thought was toffee – well, to our surprise, it was chocolate covered matzo (thanks Adriane and Andrew for bringing it). With upcoming work and family holiday parties filling up the calendar, I decided that this would be something I’d try for a change – what a hit it was! If you didn’t know anything about what you were eating, you’d think this was toffee; it has a great caramel and chocolate flavor with the perfect crunch. The more sugar/butter mixture and chocolate you add, the richer it will be so you can adjust accordingly.

If you don’t have matzo around the house, you can do this with saltine crackers as well, just leave out the salt in the recipe. Also, the reason for “good quality” chocolate chips is that these normally stay firm and not melt after the matzo has been in the freezer. Many times, store brand or cheaper chocolate chips will re-soften and create a big mess.

I know my recipes are normally low-fat, but there’s not really a way to cut the fat, calories or carbs in this one so save this for a real treat. I’ve received several requests for this recipe so I hope it’s a hit at your gatherings. Enjoy!