During the Valentine's Day season, there are a various cooking activities that are easy and safe for even little ones to participate in with the family. One is chocolate covered strawberries. Various substitutes are available for people who are not strawberry fans such as pretzels, bananas, and marshmallows. Products on the market today make this process completely painless.
The kids can assist in all steps, except the actual cooking of the chocolate. That step should be reserved for a capable adult.
The only to absolutely needed items for this chocolate covered treat are:
1) The item(s) to dip
2) Chocolate Candy Melts – Wilton Melts are available at A.C. Moore and other retail locations (there are other brands as well).
3) Optional – Sprinkles, wooden sticks, crushed nuts
4) A stovetop or microwave
Step one: Clean berries (if the dipping medium is not washable, skip to step 2). Pat fruit dry with a paper towel. Chocolate will not stick well to a wet surface.
Step two: Place parchment or wax paper on cookie sheet.
Step two: put chocolate melts into microwaveable container. If a microwave is unavailable, a saucepan can be used. Microwaving is honestly easier, faster and prevents accidental burns. Microwave in 20-30 second intervals, mixing in between to ensure even heating and prevent burning of chocolate. The melts should be smooth, but not hot when ready for dipping process.
Step Three: using hands or wooden sticks (skewering dipping item), dip in chocolate; coating evenly. Place now chocolate item on covered cookie sheet. Continue until all items are coated.
Step four: Allow chocolate to harden. If using sprinkles, nuts or other type of "decoration" that needs to stick to the chocolate, have the children do this step before the chocolate dries.
Tip: To make these treats even fancier (mom or dad should complete this extra step if desired): take melt white chocolate as shown in step two, pour melted chocolate into a sandwich bag and twist closed. Taking a pair of scissors, cut a small hole in the one corner of the baggie, and using baggie like a icing decorating bag, drizzle or pipe the white chocolate onto the already covered food item in a drizzle or the shape of a heart to emphasize the holiday.
Now the family has a Valentine's Day treat to enjoy together.
Spoonful.com also has a nice idea for white chocolate dipped strawberries, called Strawberry Rosebuds.