Make Personalized Christmas Chocolate Treats
Edited by Olivia, Eng, Graeme, Robbi
Christmas is one of the many occasions we love to celebrate. True, you spend a lot of time mulling over the exact gift you want to give. You then spend time in wrapping it and making sure that opening your gift will give delight to the recipient.
Every year you spend a lot of time and effort in looking for unique gifts for your loved ones. You seemed to have bought almost everything in the past ten years that you've been giving out gifts. From personalized shirts, caps, baseball bats, pen, shoes, socks, toy, you name it, you've already thought about it.
As the years go by, you see children grow up. Children these days are so much into gadgets. Most of the time they torment their parents until parents give in and give them what they were asking for. There are also friends that seemed to have everything in life. You know deep inside your heart that they have more than what you have such that they don't even expect any gift from you.
In the season of giving, the old adage still works: "It's the thought that counts." Indeed it is. When you look back at old photos, the most memorable ones are those that you were get surprised, right? It doesn't matter how much the gifts and surprises cost. What mattered to you was you were well-thought off. You were never forgotten.
What else can you give that is entirely your masterpiece? Well, one of the easy-to-do, enjoyable ones is making personalized chocolates. Here's how you can make them.
Shop for the basic Items that you will need:
These are plain chocolate bars that is readily available from bakeshop supplies store. They come in 250 grams to 1 kilograms. You can also choose the sweetness. It can be sweet or semi-sweet. It is also available in white, chocolate and dark chocolate.
Colored Cocoa Butter
This is what you will use for painting the chocolate. Visualize the chocolate you would want to create and shop for the colors that will require you to achieve the final outcome.
Different shapes and sizes that comes in silicon, rubber or plastic that is used to shape the chocolate.
Chocolate Melting Pot
One equipment a beginner should have. This is where you will melt the chocolate. If you don't have one, you can use a non stick pan.
The knife will replace the scraper for cutting the chocolate into bits and pieces when you don't have a scraper. One good with the scraper is that it gives you a more even slice of the chocolate for faster and even melting.
Packaging boxes or cupcake papers
This is where you will put your finished product before finally packaging it for gift-giving.
The spoon can replace the rubber spatula for the meantime if you don't have one. The rubber spatula will make it easier for you to smooth the melted chocolate unto a surface. If you have no rubber spatula, the back of the spoon will do.
For beginners, it is impossible to create the perfect piece. As such, it is advisable that you practice a few days before you finally start a whole bunch of chocolate Christmas treats and gifts.
Cut the chocolate block into bits and pieces. Estimate the amount that will fit your melting pot. You cannot put a whole block inside the melting pot.
Put the bits and pieces of chocolate into the chocolate melting pot and turn it on. You will see that the chocolate will start to melt. Make sure to stir constantly chocolate melts easily.
The consistency should not be too thick. One indication that you overcooked it is its consistency. When you overcook the chocolate, it gives a bitter flavor. The consistency should be as shown above.
Before the chocolate gets cold, pour the melted chocolate into the molds. You can use the pot for pouring and assist the flow with a spoon or spatula.
When you have filled all empty molds, you have to wait for sometime before it finally hardens. You can have it refrigerated to harden the melted chocolate faster. But when you harden a melted chocolate using the fridge, you have to store it in the fridge. You cannot store it outside as it will "perspire."
It is advisable for you to wait the melted chocolate to harden in room temperature than using the fridge especially if you plan on wrapping it as a gift. If you want to spell out a message or name on the chocolate confection, you can use pre-made sugar letters. Put them on top of the chocolate while it is still soft so that the letters will stick to the chocolate.
Monitor how long the chocolate becomes solid so you will have a clear idea as to how long it will take before you can get the chocolate out of the mold. Usually, the chocolate is easier to push from the back of the mold when its completely solid.
When the chocolate is completely off the mold, you can start painting it using the colored cocoa butter. You can also used the regular food coloring but since chocolate is an oil-based confection, the food color bleeds from the chocolate, thus ruining the final appearance of the chocolate.
When you're done with painting it, let it stand for a while and put it on a cupcake paper. Line them in a box or gift can, seal it and store for gift-giving time.
If you find the above-mentioned procedure, too much, you can use an easier alternative with pre-baked cupcakes.
Line up the cupcakes you are going to design. After the chocolate has melted, pour it in a chocolate squeeze bottle. With the bottle, squeeze the desired amount of chocolate unto the cupcake and spread.
You can now put pre-made sugar letters, symbols, cartoons on it and you're all done.
If you have problems with any of the steps in this article, please post in the comments section below.