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Monday, February 13, 2012

Valentines Gift of Chocolate Covered Strawberries

My trip out to the store over the weekend involved purchasing a pound of strawberries sold at the very low price of $1.67 (the 3 pounds for $5 sale). The ridiculously low price got my wheels turning and I thought this would be a prime opportunity to purchase something sweet to go with this tasty fruit since Valentine’s Day is fast approaching. I picked up some milk chocolate baking chips with the idea to make some chocolate covered strawberries. The strawberries are a breeze to make and the chocolate melt can be accomplished by using double boiler method or microwave. I am old school and always prefer the double boiler method. Microwaves vary in intensity and there is always risk of overheating the chocolate which of course renders it useless for doing the job. I made a pound of these with my kids over the weekend and we successfully finished all but two during our Sunday night dessert. The recipe below calls for using two pounds of berries since that will adequately use up an entire package of baking chips. If you want to make these extra fancy, proceed to add a second covering of melted white chocolate. If you really want to impress that someone special this Valentines day, why not gift him or her a batch of these?
 Chocolate Covered Strawberries Made Easy
2         pounds strawberries  (about 35 berries), rinsed and dried thoroughly
1         pound milk chocolate baking chips
2         1   tablespoon shortening

1.       Fill pot with two inches of water and bring to a boil.
2.       Place heat safe bowl or another pan over boiling saucepan.
3.       Reduce heat to simmer and place baking chips and shortening into bowl
4.       Using a spatula, stir and fold chips and shortening together until completely melted and chunks are broken down. 
5.       Turn off heat source, remove bowl and place next to strawberries.
6.       Take the berries by the stem and dip into chocolate sauce, twirling around so just about the entire berry is cover in chocolate; then place on wax paper lined cookie sheet.
7.       Once all berries have been coated in chocolate, chill in refrigerator to allow to set. Once the coating has set, you can serve and eat or prepare second coating of white chocolate and repeat steps 4 through 6.
Happy Valentine’s Day.

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