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Homemade Gifts of Candy: Chocolate Covered Cherries

Spoiler Alert: If you know me, you may be seeing your Christmas gift in this article.

Although we don’t really know our neighbors across the road, they came by today and brought us Christmas Candy and a card. It was so nice of them! Ironically, we were just getting ready to make candy to give as Christmas gifts as well.

We normally give homemade candy and cookies to several friends and sometimes family.

This year, I decided to make some different kinds of candy in addition to the usual fudge and pralines. Plus, I got the help of my family.

We started off making Chocolate Covered Cherries.

However, there really is not a recipe because I bought chocolate coating melts, fondant mix, invertase (which I didn’t need because it was already in the mix), cherries and a mold. I decided to go an easier route than tempering my own chocolate and making fondant for at least this year…

If you have not made them before, there are a few things you should know before you give them a try.

  • In order to get a liquid center, you need to let them age for weeks or, as manufactures and I do, use invertase.  Invertase changes the sugar in the fondant to a liquid. It only takes a few days instead of a few weeks. (It is also used in runny caramel candy fillings as well).
  • You can make your own fondant from scratch or use a fondant candy mix to wrap around the cherries. You just use the liquid in the jar of cherries instead of milk or water to make the fondant.
  • Once you place the invertase in the fondant, you only have an hour or so to get your candies covered in chocolate as the invertase should start to work very soon. It will take at least two days to really liquefy the centers though.
  • You can add other flavors to the fondant like almond extract.
  • If you are going to dip them, not use a mold, it is probably easier if you buy cherries with the stems on. When you place fondant around the cherry, do not go all the way to the stem to avoid weeping (or so I read).
  • If you are using a mold, make sure the cherries wrapped in fondant are small enough to fit into the chocolate lined mold and leave at least 1/8 inch at the top. Perhaps, it is also a good idea NOT to have my family help as we ran into some problems with this and ended up dipping many of ours.
  • Do not touch the candy with your fingers after it is removed from the mold to avoid leaving fingerprints all over it. Apparently, white cotton gloves work well for handling it. I need to buy some. . .

Our chocolate covered cherries look like they will taste good, but I guess I will really be able to tell in a few days.  Perhaps, I should stick notes on the gift boxes that say  “Do Not Eat Until Christmas” as that is also just a few days away!

Update: I have been asked about the fondant mix. Here is one I really like:

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