Our Lady's Garden
1. Soft Center mixture before
Almond (left) Coconut (right)
I make 1 1/2 inch sized centers. You can decide how large or small your candies will be.
Almond Soft Center balls ready
for the freezer.
Wax is the secret ingredient to shiny dipped chocolates. Yep, it's safe.
I double checked :)
Melted Chocolate in double boiler.
Dipping bottoms for a good foundation.
You can use a metal bowl over a kettle of hot water if you don't have a double boiler.
Chocolates worst enemy is water. If water drips into the chocolate it will seize up! Bad news. Avoid !!!!
Chocolate bottoms frozen and ready for chocolate to be poured over them.
The key is keeping them cold for as long as possible.
Almond centers (picture above)
Coconut (picture below)
Ruth's Dipped Chocolates
Ruth's Dipped Chocolates
Soft Center Recipe
1 can Eagle Brand Milk (Sweetened Condensed Milk)
2 lbs Powdered Sugar
1/2 cup margarine or butter (melted)
Melt the butter and mix with the condensed milk. Add powdered sugar a half a cup at a time allowing the mixture to fully integrate the sugar. (Picture 1)
The soft center mixture can now be divided if making different flavors of centers.
Flavoring whole recipe, if undivided:
Almond Centers - Add 1 Tablespoon pure Almond extract and mix well.
Coconut Centers - Add 1 Tablespoon Vanilla and 7 oz shredded coconut.
Dividing and making two flavors of chocolates.
If you make both coconut and almond by dividing the recipe above, divide the batter in half. Reserve about 2 cups and set aside.
Almond Centers - To the batter remaining in the bowl add 1 1/2 teaspoon almond, mix well. Empty bowl into a storage container with lid and place in refrigerator overnight. Clean bowl and beaters.
Coconut Centers - To the 2 cups of soft center (removed earlier) add 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla and about 3 cups sweetened coconut flakes.
Mix well. Place in storage container with lid in refrigerator.
Refrigerate mixture overnight. (Picture 2)
Next day - Roll the centers
(Needed waxed paper, cookie sheet, freezer space, powdered sugar)
Refrigerate mixture until ready to work. Cold is best.
Using a teaspoon, take a teaspoon of mixture into your hand. I make balls about 1 1/2 inches across. (Picture 3) Roll into a round ball and set on a cookie sheet covered with wax paper. Work quickly. You can use a bit of powdered sugar in your hand to avoid the mixture sticking to your hand. Wash your hands when necessary and restart the rolling process.
Place rolled centers on cookie sheets in freezer for 4-6 hours. (Picture 4)
Dipping the bottoms.
In a double boiler, melt chocolate.
Add finely chopped gulf wax
2 - 16 oz bags of chocolate
1 1/2 cup wax
( Yep, wax! Wax is what gives chocolate that shine.)
Once the wax is melted and ready, dip the bottom of each center in the melted chocolate and set on wax paper. (Picture 5 and 6)
Coating the tops!
Place a clean cutting board under a cooling rack (Picture 7.) (You can easily remove the chocolate that flows under the rack to remelt and use. Picture 9) You will place the chocolates on the cooling rack and use a small ladle to pour the chocolate over the top of the candy. Begin pouring the melted chocolate from the back and circle around to the top. It takes a bit of practice but you will master it. Move quickly to the next chocolate. After about three chocolates are enrobed, the first one you coated should be dry enough to move. You will figure out this step as you gain confidence. A little child can watch over your progress and will be happy to tell you when you miss a spot. Beware of leaving chocolates on the warming rack for too long. They will melt over the hot chocolate draining under and sink into the rack. (Been there, done that :)
Remove the chocolates to a newly covered wax cookie sheet and return to the freezer after your pan is finished.
Decorating dipped chocolates -
Using a pastry bag, fill with melted chocolate. Protect your hand with a dish towel and drizzle chocolate for a beautiful finish.
You can use candy melts, found in stores, almond bark or white chocolate to decorate the tops of your chocolates. Microwaving such ingredients requires a low power and attention.
Special Hints -
- Keep chocolate centers frozen as long as possible. A cold pan will be your friend as you coat your candies.
- Keep your double boiler away from the frozen chocolates (and children). Cold is good.
- Remember, you can learn as you go with this recipe. If you get frustrated, put your soft centers back in the freezer, place your double boiler back on the stove and figure out what works best for you.
Use a cooling rack to protect the candies from the hot chocolate flowing underneath.
You can set three chocolates at a time and pour the melted chocolate over them, remove them quickly. (You will soon to an expert ant knowing when they can be handled. Set them on a cold cookie pan lined with wax paper.
The shiny surface of the chocolates are created by adding wax to the chocolate before dipping the candies.
I decorate the chocolates so people can pick their favorites.
DON'T WASTE THAT CHOCOLATE!
It's not the prettiest of pictures but that chocolate that rests under your cooling rack shouldn't be wasted.
Make sure you use a CLEAN cutting board and then scape that chocolate back into your double boiler to melt and use.
You can use almond bark, white chocolate or melting candies to decorate the top.
I use white to indicate the coconut.
Using a decorator bag makes the job easy. Microwave using a low power and patience to melt the chocolate for decorating the tops of your chocolates.