Dipping chocolate projects make wonderful gifts!
...or a fun activity you can eat! Perfect for the elderly, and also to do with kids. (The large pretzels above can make fun "magic wands" and can also be dipped in white chocolate). The examples here can also easily be modified for those
who may have limitations.
Use these chocolate dip ideas to do with friends, in conjunction with an upcoming group activity, preparing for a party or special meal, or for making gifts to give away. Or just a treat for yourself!
You can do dipping with a
variety of foods such as nuts, cake, cookies, pretzels (tall ones are
especially good), apricots, apples, strawberries, etc. Dipping fruit in
chocolate is a favorite - but don't limit yourself! (Also see how to
make chocolate covered strawberries,
a separate project on a different page).
This page is divided into the following sections:
* Easy Microwave Method
* Homemade Dipping Chocolate
* Fun Decorating
Things To Dip
Try: large pretzels, regular looped pretzels, apple pieces, apricots, strawberries, cookies, pieces of pound cake, etc.
you thoroughly pat dry anything that you wash. Moisture can cause the
chocolate to lump or get grainy.
Easy Microwave Dipping Method
By far, the easiest way to make dipping chocolate is by using the ready-made microwavable dipping chocolate that you can buy in a disposable container. This method is probably the easiest for your elderly activities.
One tub of chocolate will cover about 15 to 18 medium sized food items.
Cover a platter with wax paper and set aside.
Remove the cover from the chocolate container, and microwave for about 50 seconds on medium setting. Stir. After that, heat and stir every 15 seconds. It is important not to overcook so that the mixture does not get stiff and thick.
Just heat until there are a few pieces of chocolate left to melt
on their own. Stir until all melted. If your chocolate does get stiff or
too thick, it will work to stir in a couple of drops of vegetable oil.
Let the chocolate cool for just a minute.
At this point you can begin dipping your items, laying them on wax paper to cool. If you’re using tall pretzels, you can stand 2 or 3 upright in a mug to cool, to prevent them from getting flattened chocolate on one side.
you are going to decorate, some things should be done while the
chocolate is still soft, so the decorations stick -- such as adding
sprinkles like in these Halloween "magic wands" to the left. (We have
more easy Halloween crafts at the link).
See more decorating ideas below.
When finished, put the platter into the fridge so the chocolate will harden – at least ½ hour. Remove just before serving – it’s best to keep them cool as long as possible. They can be transferred to a nicer serving platter without wax paper, if you'd like. Pedestal serving trays look wonderful for these. They also look nice on doilies.
Traditional, Home-Made Dipping Chocolate
Many seniors like to make recipes from scratch. So here is a traditional method.
In an uncovered double boiler, slowly melt together the chocolate chips and shortening. If you don’t have a double boiler, take a deep skillet, fill with about 3 inches of water, then set a sauce pan with your mixture inside the pan of water.
This is an important way to melt the chocolate to avoid burning. Initially you can use medium heat to warm up the burner, but then turn it down to low heat. Make sure no steam leaks out of the double boiler or pan and gets moisture into the chocolate. This can ruin the consistency and it won’t work.
Stir very frequently until almost all melted. Let the last few bits melt on their own. It is important not to overcook, or the consistency can get stiff, overly thick, even lumpy. (If this happens, it may be difficult to fix.
You can try putting
in a couple drops of vegetable oil and stir well). Let the mixture cool
slightly, but keep it warm for dipping. Then follow the same process
for dipping as the above Easy Method.
There are so many ways to decorate, it’s mostly stretching your imagination. Here are a few ideas.
Can you guess how these dipping chocolate characters
Also check out Easy Crafts and Gifts You Can Make,
and find out about our book with lots of easy yet quality craft ideas (including with
treats and food) for many seasons, reasons, ages and ability levels;
plus free templates you can use for a variety of projects.
See These Fun Pages Too:
Really Easy Apple Craft Ideas -- Try these really easy apple craft Ideas (for all ages). Apples are not only abundant in fall, they are available all year long, perfect any time.
Fun Food Activities -- These are perfect for elderly activities and can be modified as needed. Use them for parties too.
Delicious Healthy Dessert Recipes -- Our healthy dessert recipes are delicious and fresh. Lots of ways to modify and use them too, including for low salt or sugar ideas. Fun to make for either groups or individually.
Perfect Party Theme Ideas -- Dipping chocolate (as well as the other food activities on our web site) are great for parties. So check out our party concepts.