Extra Helpings: Chocolate Dipping Tips

February13

Chocolate Dipping TipsHere are some terrific Chocolate Dipping Tips (and an easy recipe) if you want to create Valentine’s Day enchantment!

What to Dip

Fresh Fruit:

  • Make sure it’s fresh and ripe. Even the richest chocolate can’t hide the sour taste of an unripe, mid-winter strawberry.
  • Remove the fruit from the fridge about 10 minutes before dipping in order to take the chill off and prevent the chocolate coating from cracking.
  • The fruit needs to be absolutely dry and free of moisture before dipping.

Nuts:

  • Whole or halved nuts work best, but sliced almonds, or pecan pieces are great, too. Put them in small clumps on a parchment  paper-lined baking sheet and spoon on the melted chocolate.
  • If you’re buying a large bag of nuts from a big-box store, taste them as soon as you’ve purchased them. If they taste stale, take them back!

Other Dip-ables:

  • Pretzels, potato chips and other salty junk food can bring a delicious balance to the sweetness of the chocolate. If you’re buying these in a super-sized quantity, make sure they are fresh!
  • Bacon! Thick cut bacon works best. Fry it until very crispy. Cool completely before dipping.
  • Marshmallows and cookies.
  • Dried fruit. Apricots, pineapple and apples are addictive.
  • Zucchini. I’m not kidding. Slice fresh zucchini sticks and dip them in powdered sugar… then into chocolate. Amazing.

Chocolate Dipping Tips:

  • Water or moisture in your chocolate will cause it to “seize.” This means it will get hard, crumbly and grainy.
  • Chocolate that gets too hot will also seize. That’s why you need to melt chocolate slowly and at the lowest possible heat until smooth.
  • If chocolate seizes, blend in 1 tablespoon shortening for every 4-ounces of chocolate and stir constantly until the chocolate is smooth again.
  • Chocolate bars and squares are best for melting. They put additives in chocolate chips so the chips will keep their shape. You want the best and purest chocolate you can afford with only these ingredients: cocoa beans, sugar, cocoa butter, soy lecithin (an emulsifier) and vanilla.
  • Chocolate should be warm (not hot!) and have a thin consistency so it gently coats what you’re dipping. If it’s too cool it will be thick and ugly.
  •  Use a potato masher to dip fruit, pretzels or cookies in hot melted chocolate.
  • Don’t waste the last bit of chocolate in the pan! Spoon the remaining chocolate into a plastic re-sealable bag and seal. Snip off a tiny piece from the bottom corner and drizzle it over anything still left to dip!
  • Cool your dipped items on a tray lined with parchment paper.
  • After coating the goodies, tightly wrap the chocolate and store it in a cool, dry place. You can also refrigerate for up to 2-days.
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One thought on “Extra Helpings: Chocolate Dipping Tips

  1. Sabita

    Double Chocolate Peanut Butter Pretzel Bites (from Love from the Oven)a0 Did you notice that I awyals have at least one thing on this list that is loaded with sugar and chocolate?a0 Even though I’m not eating processed sugar right now, there is no doubt that I’m a chocolate addict and can’t wait to have some again when this challenge is over.a0 I have to stockpile these recipes until then J.a0 This super easy sweet and salty combo looks excellent.a0 They also look to be very addicting which means I should give most of them away when I make them!

    Reply

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Hi…
I’m Christina Chavez

I was a TV journalist for many years, but with a house full of kids I decided to come off the road, go to culinary school and follow my passion for cooking. Mama’s High Strung is all about food… everything from creative recipe ideas to some really cool kitchen gadgets and cooking tips. I live in Chicago, but I love to travel and write about my food discoveries! You can reach me by email: mama@mamashighstrung.com.