Happy Valentines Day! The long awaited day of love and devotion is here and we're celebrating by having our kitchen and bathrooms re-grouted. Doesn't that sound romantic? Haha! Obviously date night will be taking place another evening.
So far, my children have been clad in matching red shirts, forced to smile for pictures with cupcakes I decorated and took to school, and given lots of special sweet treats. They're currently sleeping off their sugar highs, so I have a moment's peace to give you a tip on one of the most exquisite desserts I have ever made. Chocolate Balloons.
I watched an episode of something concerning amazing desserts about 12 years ago and decided to adapt one of the ideas and make it my own. The result was shockingly fabulous and I like to pull it out when I need the razzle dazzle of the wow factor.
So, I'll walk you through some of the steps and then show a few finished product shots. I begin this diva of a dessert by filling 4-6 water balloons with water. If you THINK this will turn into a water fight, make twice as many so you can throw half and eat the others. I merely fill them to the normal water balloon fillable-ness. Not trying to win awards for the biggest water balloon here.
Next, I take a double boiler and melt a ton of semi-sweet chocolate. Go for chocolate bark or chocolate chips - whichever you prefer. Once the chocolate is completely melted, holding the knotted end of the balloon, CAREFULLY dip the bottom of one balloon into the melted chocolate, give it a swirl to ensure you have nice coverage on the bottom of the balloon, and set it on a foil or parchment lined cookie sheet. The chocolate will puddle a bit and create a nice base for it to sit upright. Follow these steps with the remaining balloons and then set them into the refrigerator or freezer to set up (30ish minutes for freezer, an hour-ish for refrigerator).
Once you pull the fully set chocolate from the frig or freezer, turn the balloon upside down over the sink and puncture it with a sharp knife. The water will run out into the sink and the balloon will contract away from the inside of the chcolate. You might have to help out peeling it away. The ending result is a perfectly tulip shaped chocolate cup. Amazing! Aren't you proud of yourself?
Next, fill these beauties with whatever your family enjoys most...strawberries and grapes work great with a topping of fruit dip. A cheesecake filling works marvelously with a fresh strawberry topping (pictured below). You could whip up a chocolate mousse and pipe it in there...many many possibilities here.
I opted to fill them with a cheesecake filling and top with fresh sliced strawberries.
Then I added some razzle dazzle with whipped cream.
Plate these individually...and sit back and wait for the compliments. They're delicious, beautiful and will astound your guests.
PS - these will be offered in my new catering menu debuting soon. Stay tuned! :)