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Chocolate wont melt for dipping!

Lately I canÂt get chocolate to melt. I donÂt know whatÂs up with that.

My daughter had her heart set on dipping strawberries in white chocolate for Thanksgiving. I used to have one brand of white chocolate chips to use for dipping, but they must have changed the formula and they would not melt anymore. They get soft and mushy but never liquid enough for dipping. The manufacturers must think everyone wants to use them in cookies so have formulated them to hold their shape. There were instructions on the side of the bag for melting but they did not work.

So I bought white chocolate melting disks. And even those would not melt! We tried both the double boiler and the microwave. They all became more like fudge than melted. The longer we tried, the firmer each batch got. It was like gently stirring turned them into fudge. We must have melted 2 lbs, in small batches several different ways. I went on line to look for help, some sites recommended blending in a little vegetable oil or butter. That made no difference.

What a waste! Plus my daughter no longer thinks I am a kitchen goddess. I have tumbled off my pedestal, and it hurts. I think I need to go find the kitchen witch I used to have and hang her back up. What can I do with the chunky-fudgey white chocolate? Is there any way it can be re-used?

Please tell me what IÂm doing wrong! WhatÂs the secret? I want to make sure I am armed before Christmas starts and I want to dip cookies or nuts. ItÂs been a while since I used milk or semi-sweet chocolate for dipping, I wonder if theyÂve changed those too.

I lost my real double boiler top, so used a steel mixing bowl set over a pan of simmering water. When that did not work I thought maybe it conducted the heat too quickly so switched to a pyrex bowl set over the water. No luck either. Could it have been steam escaping up the sides? Water too hot?

My microwave, I think, is too powerful. It bakes the chocolate before it can melt. The "lower" settings are just a proportion of "on power and off power", so low is not really "low". My old cheapo micro used to do well.

The next thing I thought I would try is a pyrex bowl set in an electric frying pan on low. Mom made a lot of molded candy: she used to melt it on the stove then transfer the boiler top to the electric frying pan to keep it warm.

Someone give me hand so I can climb back up the pedestal.

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