Chocolate is easy and great fun to work with if you know a few simple techniques. Master them, and you will be making deliciously creative chocolate creations with ease! Enjoy this Tu B’Shvat special with your kids!
semi-sweet baking chocolate
dried fruit (bananas, kiwis, maraschino cherries, etc)
quality time with your kids in the KIDchen
1. Break the chocolate into small pieces, and place in the double boiler over hot, but not simmering water.
2. Allow the chocolate to melt slowly, stirring it occasionally, until an even, smooth consistency is reached.
3. Pour the chocolate into a small, clean plastic zip-top bag. Cut a very small hole in the bottom corner and gently squeeze out the chocolate in drizzles to make your design. Add the dried fruit before the chocolate dries. (about 1 hour)
Tips For Successful Melting:
• Never melt chocolate over direct heat. A double boiler or water bath, made by putting a metal or glass bowl over a pot of water, is the traditional way to melt chocolate. You can make your own double boiler by placing a small pot inside a larger one. The bottom of the bowl should not touch the water in the pot. Never cover the double boiler or pot, since the condensation will drip into the chocolate.
• Make sure that the bowl with the chocolate is completely dry. Moisture is the enemy of melting chocolate and can cause the chocolate to clump.
• To rescue chocolate that may have accidentally had water drip into it and which is now clumping, try adding about 1 teaspoon of vegetable oil for every ounce of chocolate. Keep stirring the chocolate until smooth.
To Avoid a Mess, Try This:
Place the squares of chocolate in a large storage zip-top bag and put the bag directly in your double boiler. When the chocolate has melted, you are ready to cut your hole in the bag and begin your creation. Cleanup is super easy!
You can also melt chocolate in the microwave. Make sure that the inside of your microwave is dry. Break the chocolate into small pieces and place in a large bag. Heat for one minute. Remove from the microwave and stir. Return to the microwave and continue to heat for 10-second intervals, followed by stirring, to avoid burning the chocolate. Repeat until the chocolate is smooth.
After melting the chocolate in a bag, some bags get very soft and can burst open. So, when the chocolate has melted, it is best to squeeze it out into a new bag.