Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Fourth of July Chocolate!


If you read my blog, you know that I’m big on Chocolate for the Holidays. Well, the Fourth of July is one of my favorite holidays, so how could I not put together a few easy chocolate recipes? Let me know what you are making or if you have any special Fourth of July chocolate recipes to share.

What could be more American than Red Velvet Cake? Here’s a recipe from About.com for Red Velvet Cupcakes. Frost with cream cheese icing and add some red, white and blue sprinkles.
You can also use this recipe to make red velvet cake. Simply pour into greased 9-inch baking pans and bake 30 minutes.

Cupcake ingredients:
1/2 cup butter
1-1/2 cups sugar
2 large eggs
2 Tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder
2 oz. red food coloring (2 bottles)
2-1/2 cups sifted all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup buttermilk
1 tsp. baking soda
1 Tbsp. white vinegar

Preparation:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line muffin tins with cupcake liners.
2. With an electric mixer, beat butter and sugar together until creamy. Beat in eggs.
3. Stir cocoa powder into red food coloring, then add to the sugar mixture.
4. Stir flour and salt together in a small bowl. Add one-third of the flour mixture to the batter, then one-third of the buttermilk, and so on, alternating, until all is incorporated into the batter.
5. Dissolve the baking soda into the vinegar and add that to the batter.
6. Pour into prepared cupcake liners. Bake 18-22 minutes.
7. Frost with cream cheese frosting.
Cream cheese frosting with red, white & blue sprinkles is the perfect topping for these red velvet cupcakes, but maybe you have another idea?

STRAWBERRIES.

Easy Chocolate Covered Strawberries are perfect for the Fourth of July.

12 oz. chopped high quality dark chocolate (70% or more)
3 Tbsp. butter
1 quart fresh strawberries, washed and dried completely with a paper towel

Preparation:
1. Line a cookie sheet with waxed paper. You will place your chocolate covered strawberries on this sheet to cool.
2. Place chocolate and butter in a microwave-safe container. Heat on 50% power for 1 minute. Stir and continue heating on 50% power in 30-second increments until melted.
3. Holding the strawberry by the stem, dip in the chocolate mixture, then shake it a bit to get excess chocolate off, dip in sprinkles (if you're going for the red, white and blue), then lay on the waxed paper to harden. Refrigerate chocolate covered strawberries when finished.

White Chocolate Covered Strawberries

12 oz white baking chips or 2 cups of premium broken white chocolate bars
1 Tbsp butter
18 large strawberries with stems and/or leaves

Same directions, basically as above.
1. Cover cookie sheet with waxed paper. Heat white baking chips and 1 tablespoon shortening in 2-quart saucepan over low heat, stirring constantly, until chips are melted.
2. For each strawberry, grab by stem and dip three-fourths of the way into melted white chocolate leaving top of strawberry and leaves uncoated. Quickly (and gently) roll in red, white and blue sprinkles to coat all sides (optional).
3. Place on waxed paper-covered cookie sheet.

Helpful Hints for Chocolate Covered Strawberries
Make sure strawberries are well-dried, so the chocolate can adhere.
Make sure they're big and beautiful-they'll look better.
Use a the best-quality chocolate you can find.
Work quickly.

Here's a link to a great page on 4th of July Chocolate Strawberries and Cupcake Decorating Ideas.

And what could be more American than S'mores. Check out the S'mores recipes here and here on DyingforChocolate.com.

Need a good mystery to read on the Fourth of July? I have a list on Mystery Fanfare. Enjoy!

Have a Great Independence Day!!

3 comments:

~~louise~~ said...

Hey Janet!
Happy 4th to you too! Such patriotic recipes...Thanks for sharing...

Mae Travels said...

Why not s'mores? Perfect for the bbq.

Janet Rudolph said...

Right, Mae, and I have S'mores on the Blog near the end with two links. Give them a try! Have a great Fourth!