Mrs. Claus opened her Chocolate Dipping Factory
once again this year and we have been busy little elves.
Friday was spent creating centers for chocolate dipping
Purple Chocolate Home
and Saturday was spent dipping hundreds of chocolates!
I created a new favorite
Lemon Dream Chocolates.
It is a variation on my Lemon Truffles.
Now I am a dark chocolate girl when it comes to pairing
with fruit fillings, but we always have to dip some
milk chocolate for those who haven't heard that dark
chocolate is heart healthy! (Or who still, just don't like it.)
I topped these with a little crush lemon candy. I love it when the
chocolate tells you a little about something that is inside.
These are definitely going to be include in
from now on.
Lemon Dream Centers
8 oz. softened cream cheese
1/2 C. lemon curd (I like Trader Joe's or Richardson's
in the square bottle)
1 C. white chocolate discs, melted
2 T. crushed hard lemon candy (like Lemonheads)
additional crushed lemon candy for garnish
Beat the cream cheese, lemon curd and melted white chocolate
together in the mixer bowl until well blended, scraping down the sides.
Beat in the crushed lemon candy.
Place in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate
overnight or a few days.
This center is super soft so in order to form balls,
dust hands with flour and quickly form balls,
placing them on a cookie sheet covered in
parchment paper and dusted with a small amount
of flour. You will need to keep dusting your hands
with flour between every few balls so that it won't stick
to your hands. Place the cookie sheet in the freezer
Prepare your dipping chocolate by melting and then
cooling back to between 86 and 90 degrees. Take
a few balls out of the freezer at a time and dip them.
They will be really soft even when frozen.
After dipping, while the chocolate is still wet,
dust with a little crushed candy.
You must store these in the fridge as they have
cream cheese in them.
See how soft the center is?
These will make your toes curl they
are so good. I just love the flavor combination of
chocolate and lemon.
What a fun new family tradition we are starting with all
of the little ones wanting to help dip!
When the kids were little I would always dip once they went
to bed so I could do it uninterupted.
One of my
of dipping was when our oldest
daughter was almost two and I had dipped the chocolates and
stored them in her closet. She came out of her room humming
with a big smile on her face and chocolate drooling down
her chin. Her cheeks were stuffed with a couple of
chocolates and she had a couple in each hand. She has been
a fine chocolate connoisseur since then. She is now thirty.
I have been dipping chocolates every Christmas for 32 years.
I have to thank my
neighbor Liz Knight
who took me to her
grandmother's house and introduced me to
hand dipping chocolates when I was a newlywed.
We would always dip using a bowl in the microwave or
using an electric frying pan. The electric fry pan is used
unheated and the cold metal cools the chocolate. You can
turn it on for 3 seconds when the chocolate gets too stiff.
Those both work, but my
wonderful couverture machine
makes it possible to really
crank out the chocolates in volume. It is kind of a homemade
looking machine that I bought at a candy store, Shepherds, when they
were still in business, but it has served me for about 6 or 7
years now. I love it and it was a fraction of the cost of
commercially made ones.
As a grandmother, I have enjoyed
seeing the grandchildren
want to help. You can see my niece at the top of the
picture and four of the grandchildren gathered around.
The one in the bottom right corner has just
dropped or should I say thrown
a center into the chocolate. Two did that and
the other two coated the dipped chocolates with
Their favorite thing to dip and eat were
(the ones we are dipping in the above picture)
lots of Cinnamon Santas
It was a 4 hour dipping marathon!
I have to include my favorite picture of one of
my little elves. He didn't help this year as he was home
with Daddy. I just adore the look on his face.
I know just what he is feeling!