Friday, February 4, 2011

Cocoa Blocks

Cocoa Blocks dusted in cocoa powder
This recipe comes from King Arthur Flour.  I thought they sounded like a good idea for a small Christmas gift for friends and kids' teachers.  I think most of them never made it to the cocoa stage; they were eaten just for the fun of it.  Some I coated in cocoa powder, others I coated in crushed peppermint candy canes.  Be warned, though, if you do the candy canes, you need to give them out and use them within a day or two because the candy starts to melt and look very unattractive.  


Cocoa Blocks
    --adapted from King Arthur Flour

Ingredients:
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk (1 1/4 cups)
  • 3 cups semisweet or bittersweet chocolate (chopped chocolate bars or chips)
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened baking chocolate
  • wooden sticks (I used corn skewers purchased at Smart & Final in SoCal)

    Instructions: 

    1) Line an 8" x 8" pan with parchment paper or aluminum foil.
    2) Heat the cream and condensed milk over low heat until steaming. Remove from the heat and add the chocolate; allow it to gently melt.
    3) After about 10 minutes, return the chocolate mixture to low heat to completely melt the chocolate. Whisk vigorously until the mixture is thick and shiny. Add a few drops of flavoring oil if you like; hazelnut, coffee, or vanilla are popular flavors.
    4) Pour the chocolate mixture into the pan; shake the pan gently to level. Sprinkle with cocoa, if desired. Set aside overnight to slowly set up.
    5) Run a knife around the edge of the pan and turn out onto a clean cutting surface.
    6) Slice into 1 ¼" cubes. Heat a knife in hot water and wipe dry before each cut, for smoothest cuts.
    7) Stick a wooden stick into the center of each block.
    8) Roll in cocoa or crushed peppermint candy, if desired.
    9) Wrap in waxed paper, parchment, or plastic wrap to store.
    Yield: about 3 dozen blocks.
    Bagged for Christmas gifts

    6 comments:

    1. What a neat idea! Those peppermint ones look especially pretty. I have a sweet treat linky party going on at my blog right now called "Sweets for a Saturday" and I'd like to invite you to stop by this weekend and link your cocoa blocks up. Feel free to also link up any other sweet treats you've made this past week. http://sweet-as-sugar-cookies.blogspot.com/2011/02/sweets-for-saturday-3.html

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    2. I think I am going to make these using peppermint sticks!

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    3. Do these need to be stored in the fridge or are they ok to leave out?

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      1. I printed the recipe as it appears on the King Arthur Flour website. You can click on the link and see if there are any comments that tell you to refrigerate them, but since it does not say to refrigerate, I don't think you have to. I have vague memories of reading a comment about using them within a week or so, though.

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    4. Thank you. I check it out and he suggested 2 weeks max at room temp or 30 days in the freezer.
      Another suggestion was not to make tem more than a week out before gift giving that way you can tell them to use it within a week or so.

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      Replies
      1. Thanks for checking that out and letting me know! I need to get some of these made to give away soon!

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