In this instructable I will describe how to make a home made chocolate and fruit plate that is guaranteed to wow the socks off your significant other. The process is simple and straight forward enough that anybody can pull this off quickly and cheaply.
Step 1: Gather the Materials
The first step is to gather up your ingredients. For my chocolates I decided to use strawberries, blackberries, coconut shavings, white chocolate, and milk chocolate. You can use any kind of fruit you like, but keep in mind that if you're using fresh fruits you'll need to keep the chocolate refrigerated and eat it fairly quickly. If you want your chocolates to last longer I would recommend using dried fruit or nuts.
In addition to the chocolate and fruits you'll need the following:
- Two pans for melting the chocolate.
- Bowls for holding chopped strawberries.
- Two rubber spatulas to keep the chocolate stirred
- Two Ice trays (or something similar to use as a chocolate mold)
- Apple corer (to use as a chocolate mold)
- Food coloring
Step 2: Preparing the Berries.
First wash and dry your strawberries and blackberries (of course) and start to chop the strawberries into little cubes. I found the best way to accomplish this is to cut pizza shape slices into the strawberry vertically and then make a series of horizontal slices until the berry is all chopped up. It really only takes about four or five strawberries to make enough little cubes. I tried to cut up the monster deformed looking strawberries, leaving the pretty ones for later.
Initially I had planned to break apart the blackberries as well, but my blackberries weren't ripe enough and just kinda turned to mush between my fingers. Just as well though - I saved them to use as garnish at the end.
Step 3: Melting the Chocolate
Next step is to melt the chocolate. You want to make sure and use the lowest possible temperature on your stove. If you don't melt it slowly your chocolate can scorch on the bottom of the pan making a big mess. It helps if you keep stirring the chocolate constantly. It takes a while but be patient. Eventually your chocolate should turn to the consistency of melted ice cream.
Step 4: Preparing the Ice Cube Tray
Wash and dry your ice cube trays thoroughly. You want to make sure there isn't any moisture left in them when adding the chocolate, as this can cause inconsistencies in the texture.
I decided I wanted some extra color in my chocolate so I mixed my red, yellow, and blue food coloring with a little bit of water. Next I used a rolled up paper towel to paint the food coloring into one of the ice cube trays.
Step 5: Pouring the Chocolate
Once my chocolate was good and melted and my trays were nice and colorful it was time to fill them with chocolate and fruit! I started out with a layer of white chocolate, then fruit, then milk chocolate, then a final layer of white. I experimented with a couple different combination of fruit and chocolate. Some are strawberry, some are coconut, some are just white and milk chocolate mixed together. You can do whatever you like really, It all tastes great.
After your trays are filled stick them in the freezer for about an hour.
Step 6: Experimenting With Another Mold
While my ice cube trays were cooling in the freezer I decided to experiment with using my apple corer as a mold. I had lots of extra milk chocolate so I used that to fill the mold. The process was the same as the ice cubes, I just had to be careful not to move the corer or the chocolate would ooze out the sides.
After I was done I stuck it in the freezer with the rest.
Step 7: What to Do With the Extra Chocolate?
When I was done I realized I had a lot of chocolate left over... I also had a lot of strawberries left... I guess I'll just have to make some chocolate covered strawberries then won't I.
Step 8: Breaking Out the Chocolate
Once the chocolate is nice and hardened It's pretty easy to get it out. Just twist your ice cube trays like you would with ice and they start to pop out. I broke two of them in half when I got a little overzealous with my twisting, but be gentle with it and they should all pop out just fine.
Step 9: Making It All Look Pretty!
I didn't have a plate big enough so I used a chopping board with paper towels over it to present my chocolates. You can arrange them however you want. I decided to go with a tower of chocolates surrounded by strawberries and blackberries.