Chocolate dipped fruit is the perfect dessert to serve at a party but it can also be a wonderful homemade gift. While you can always buy a box of chocolate covered strawberries at a candy store, why not try and make some at home? It is a thoughtful gift with a personal touch and you will save a ton of money making it yourself. Instead of just having strawberries, you can dip blackberries, dried apricots, bananas and orange sections. With the right ingredients and a few simple tips, you might never buy chocolate dipped fruit from a store again.
After a long winter, I am glad spring is finally here and the farmers’ markets are opening. When you are making chocolate dipped fruit, you want the freshest fruit possible so I love purchasing mine at the farmers’ market. The fruit should be purchased not more than one day before you are planning on making it. Dried fruit is also great if you can’t get to the store that day and it is really easy to work with.
After washing your fruit, make sure you dry it really well on paper towels. You don’t want any moisture on the fruit as this will make it spoil quicker. I usually let my fruit sit on the paper towels for a few minutes to make sure any moisture is gone.
Now it’s time to melt the chocolate. I love my KitchenAid® Microwave Hood Combination Oven as it makes working with chocolate really easy. It has a soften and melt function so I can program it to the right temperature for chocolate melting. I like to work with small batches of chocolate and fruit. It is less overwhelming this way. Make sure to use a microwave-proof bowl that is deep enough to dip your fruit in.
Once the chocolate is melted, it’s time to dip that fruit. Three things that are important to have are chop sticks, wax paper and a large baking sheet. The chop sticks are perfect for dipping blackberries, orange sections, bananas or other small pieces of fruit. The wax paper is needed so that the chocolate does not stick to the surface while it hardens. All you have to do is line a large baking sheet with the wax paper and you are ready to dip.
It is easy to spear blackberries right on a chopstick. The fruit then gets coated with melted chocolate and set on the wax paper. You can also use two chopsticks to hold the fruit. Or you can dip some of the fruit with your fingers if you don’t mind getting them messy. The strawberries are easy to hold by the stems. Don’t worry about mistakes or smudges. The sprinkles get sprinkled on after the fruit is covered in chocolate and they will cover everything. No one says the fruit has to be perfect.
Once I am done dipping the fruit, I place the pan in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes. Once the chocolate is firm, I transfer the fruit to another pan that has clean wax paper on it or a cutting board. Your tray of fruit is ready to be plated or wrapped. The orange sections are my favorite. When you take a bite, they just burst with juice and chocolate!
Mother’s Day is right around the corner and this fruit is perfect to wrap up on a pretty plate with cellophane and give as a gift or take to a party.
Another idea is to spear the chocolate covered fruit on skewers and arrange them in a vase. What mom wouldn’t like to have a vase of chocolate-covered fruit? This is perfect for any gathering. Kids like this as much as adults do and it is a great way to get everyone to eat fruit.
The worst part about making covered fruit is the clean-up. No one likes messy bowls covered in sprinkles and melted chocolate. But thanks to my KitchenAid® Architect® Series II Dishwasher, clean-up is fairly easy. I love the heavy duty cycle option as well as the high temperature scrub. It gets everything squeaky clean.
Now it’s your turn to make some chocolate-covered fruit. Serve it at your next party or give it as a gift. It’s easier than you think and your friends and family will be impressed!
Chocolate Dipped Fruit
Makes 8-12 servings
1 to 2 pounds of assorted fruit (strawberries, blackberries, banana slices, dried apricots or peeled orange slices)
1 (12 ounce) bag good -quality chocolate chips (you can use semi- sweet, milk chocolate or white)
Colored sprinkles or sugars
Wash and dry the fruit on paper towels.
Put half the chocolate chips in a microwave-safe bowl. Choose chocolate melt setting on the KitchenAid® Microwave Hood Combination Oven and microwave chocolate according to weight. Or microwave chocolate in increments of 30 seconds, stirring chocolate in between until melted and smooth. Make sure not to overcook chocolate.
Using your fingers or chop sticks, dip fruit in chocolate until it is about 3/4 covered. Place fruit on a large cookie sheet covered with wax paper. Sprinkle on colored sprinkles or sugars. Opposite colored chocolate can also be drizzled on. Repeat with remaining chocolate and fruit.
Place cookie sheet in the refrigerator for thirty minutes or until chocolate hardens. Wrap well or place in plastic containers until fruit is ready to serve.
*The Contributor of this post has been compensated by KitchenAid for this post, but this post represents the Contributor’s own opinion.*