Thursday, June 28, 2007

Chocolate Dipped Strawberries (CDS)

If you can believe it, I made 110 of these and still have strawberries left! These aphrodisiacs look amazingly beautiful yet are completely effortless to make I swear. And it is SO much fun. It's pure joy. I found myself completely engrossed in the strawberries and chocolate. I caught myself smiling and actually feeling giddy about making something so easy yet fancy enough to 'wow' people.

Before the dipping started, we narrowed the pool of strawberries down looking for size (large, of course!), shape (not too deformed), color (bright red not dark red), blemishes (not terribly bruised) etc. After all of that, I came to the conclusion that none of it would even really matter because the chocolate would hide most of the flaws. Probably the most important quality was the bruising because that affects taste.

Then there was the dipping technique. I took to dipping the strawberries straight in to the chocolate when I started out and when the chocolate became less, I tried dipping it side ways, and twirling it around in a circle like a ballerina in the 2nd grade who's trying to say in her circle but some how manages to pop out of it. The long of the short is that no technique or skill is required. The results are fool proof.

Unlike commercially made chocolate dipped strawberries, mine were delicious. The strawberries were flavorful and the chocolate adhered to the strawberries so that every single red-liscious bite had equal parts chocolate and strawberry.

Have you ever noticed that the chocolate on store bought strawberries is too brittle and chunks of it come off when you bite in to the strawberry? Now, that's a waste of perfectly fine chocolate. Commercially made CDS' use dark chocolate which tends to be really quite hard at room temperature, more so if it's been chilled.

In high school I made chocolate covered bananas and I found the dark chocolate really difficult to work with, and quite frankly, the bananas didn't taste very good. It was utterly disappointing. A few months ago,
I saw Ina Garten make these treats on her show, Barefoot Contessa, on the Food Network Channel, and was inspired to make them again. The thing that caught my attention was her use of cream and how it made the chocolate stay liquid-like even after the chocolate is removed from the heat.

Try this recipe -- I think you'll be super happy with the results.

Serves as many people as you want
Cooking Time:
5 minutes to melt chocolate

-1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
-3 T heavy cream
-Strawberries (long stemmed if you can get them)

Melt the chocolate and cream together in a bowl set over simmering water until just melted. Stir and remove from the heat. Dip each strawberry in the chocolate and set aside on waxed or parchment paper to dry.

I made the mistake of storing them in containers. While they tasted fine, they looked like they were sweating so the strawberries will not be as attractive. I don't know why but the 'sweating' kind of made me think of when you first hold hands with the person you're interested in, your heart's kind of racing, and your hand starts to sweat. It's kind of like that.

Anyway, I digress. Store uncovered and eat within the next day or two. Using hand picked strawberries especially means that the shelf life is short.

I quadrupled this recipe and there was enough chocolate to cover 110 small to medium sized strawberries, and there was still chocolate left over. Now, that's a problem I can deal with!


Stacey said...

As one of the lucky recipients of these delectable treats, I can attest that the chocolate was melt in your mouth good, and combined with the sweet fresh strawberry it was an explosive combination. I devoured several on site, and ate most of my doggie bag in the car on the way home. Even three days later, the few that remained were delicious. If you are recruiting official blog tasters, consider me (and my growing gut) for the job!

Nirmala said...

Would you be willing to taste test chocolate truffles?

Stacey said...

I am salivating.

I will taste test anything made!

TBC said...

Oooh! Your CDS looks good!

Ethan said...

Thanks Nirmala for this delicious recipe. I will very soon try the chocolate covered strawberries. Thanks again for sharing the recipe.