Melting chocolate. I am horrible at this. If you’ve ever melted chocolate for too long, it does something called “seizing”. Basically it goes from melted goodness to this horrible congealed, gritty, unpalatable mess. There are solutions on the interwebs for unseizing chocolate….they’ve never worked for me. So, my best advice for this is to do it slowly. There’s really two ways – one is in the microwave, just nuke and stir, nuke and stir….keep repeating until its melted. Or, my preferred way is to do a makeshift double-boiler.
Put a little water into a sauce pan (not a lot – less than an inch). Get a heat-safe bowl that’s larger than the pot and put it over the water and put the chocolate and whatever else you’re melting with it in there – in this case butter.
The bowl should be just above the water – it shouldn’t be touching it. Heat the water to a low simmer and stir the chocolate regularly. Do NOT keep it on there until it’s completely melted because it goes from melted to seized in a hot second. Get it so that there are a few lumps still there and then take it off the heat and continue stirring – there will be plenty of heat still in there to melt the rest.
I prefer the double boiler method – I feel like I can control the process a little better. It takes a little longer, but it works very well and you don’t end up wasting chocolate.