Jan 16, 2011

Chocolate Cups

Here's the follow-up recipe to the last post on dark chocolate peanut butter cups. Since these are solid chocolate, not filled, they are much faster and easier to make. You melt the chocolate, flavor it, top it, and refrigerate to set. Easy. There are two flavor options below, coffee chocolate cups and mint chocolate cups. There are endless flavor possibilities. Let me know if you come up with one you like. I'm thinking Nutella-filled chocolate cups would be tasty. These make great gifts presented in candy boxes or little cellophane gift bags. Be sure to make extra for yourself. These disappeared from our house pretty quickly.

Since these were solid chocolate, I went with a smaller candy paper cup than for the peanut butter-filled chocolate cups. Make them however you like, just know that you're quantity will be less with larger cups.

I use mini-muffin pans for structure until the chocolate cups have set. Otherwise, the floppy paper cups full of melted chocolate would be a big mess.

Coffee Chocolate Cups:
24 ounces Ghiradelli 60% chocolate chips
2 teaspoons instant coffee crystals
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons cocoa nibs (or chocolate-covered cocoa nibs), finely chopped
#4 candy paper cups with 1-inch base
mini-muffin pans

Mint Chocolate Cups:
24 ounces Ghiradelli 60% chocolate chips
2-3 teaspoons mint extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 ounce peppermint candy or candy cane, finely chopped
#4 candy paper cups with 1-inch base
mini-muffin pans

Prepare your pans: separate candy papers and place them in the mini-muffin pans. You'll need approximately 24.

Choose the flavor you want to make from the ingredient options above and then proceed...
Melt your chocolate in a double boiler or a saucepan about 1/3 full with simmering water with a large bowl placed over top. Make sure that your bowl is larger than the saucepan and that the bowl is completely dry on the inside (any water droplets will cause the chocolate to seize).

Melt the chocolate in the bowl or double boiler until it melts. Take your time here and stir it occasionally to melt it evenly. When the chocolate is completely melted, remove the bowl from the simmering water. (You can also melt the chocolate in a microwave. I often do this with small quantities of chocolate. But sometimes larger quantities can be harder to get melted all the way through, so you might try it in two batches.)

Stir or whisk in your flavoring (coffee or mint extract) and salt. Stir well to make sure your flavoring is completely incorporated.

Pour the flavored, melted chocolate into the candy papers in mini-muffin pans. I found this easiest to do with a tablespoon.

Sprinkle the tops of your filled chocolate cups with either the cocoa nibs or peppermint candies, depending on which flavor your making.

Place the mini-muffin pan in the fridge for at least an hour to set. Keep refrigerated until ready to serve. You can remove them from the fridge 15 minutes before serving to let them soften just a bit before eating.

Yield: approximately 24 candies per recipe.

Adapted from David Lebovitz.

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