Monday, January 18, 2010

Chocolate Chai Cups and a Tutorial: How to Make Chocolate Vessels




I've been waxing philosophical chocoholical lately, as you can tell.  It may be cliché, and it may be expected, but when Valentine's day rolls around I'm in a complete chocolate state of mind. And why not? Chocolate supposedly mimics the feeling of falling in love via some crazy stimulant that gets released into our bloodstream after eating it.

I always like to plan ahead and prepare early, but this recipe requires little of that.  It's great for those of you who have little time to bake or fuss over a special occasion dessert.

First, I'd like to talk about making the chocolate vessel.  It is SO easy and fun.  You'll need to buy a pack of water bomb balloons (some of you may know where I'm going with this) or if you can't find this small variety, any balloon 5" or less with do nicely.




To prepare, you should have a few balloons blown up and resting on a clean surface. Balloons can be full of static, and are prone to pick up any stray fiber, hair, or particle on a seemingly dust-free surface. I gave both my table and platter a good wipe-down with a damp cloth.  Lay out a large piece of parchment for the dipped balloons. 


I used a small bag of Ghiradelli semi-sweet baking chips, melted in the microwave at 30 second intervals. You'll want to be careful to not overheat your chocolate, or the completed cups will develop a chalky white film in the drying process. My advice would be to stir very well between heating intervals.
You can also melt your chocolate in a saucepan on top of the stove on the lowest heat possible.  This takes a bit longer, but your chocolate is less likely to develop the chalky white film.


Transfer chocolate to a small bowl. Your chocolate should not be hot. If you find that it is hot, let it cool slightly.  Dip bottom of balloon into the melted chocolate and transfer to a piece of parchment paper.  Continue to dip balloons until all chocolate is used.



Allow to dry for approximately 20 minutes.  You'll know it's ready when the previously glossy chocolate coating has taken on a matte finish. 

Now for the fun part.  After the chocolate has set, carefully cut the balloon at the top just below the knot.  Allow the air to escape slowly.  The balloon will pull away from the chocolate and leave a beautiful cup!

pimp myspace

Occasionally you may experience a sticky balloon that doesn't want to let go of the chocolate.  If this happens, then imagine your vessel as a clock, and gently pull the balloon away at 12:00, 3:00, 6:00 and 9:00. Pull from the knot upward.  Your balloon should release.



Now you can fill them with anything your heart desires.  My heart desired some Chai Latte whipped creme.  This is very simple to make.  All you need is some heavy whipping cream, dry, instant Chai mix and a little sugar.


Chai Latte Whipped Creme

My very own Chai flavored whipped creme recipe.  So easy ...

See Chai Latte Whipped Creme on Key Ingredient.


I made some of the vessels into teacups (see above).  For the handle, just pipe some melted chocolate into a small candy-cane shape and allow to dry.  The handle can be adhered with additional melted chocolate.

I don't think I've ever had so much fun playing with chocolate.  I think this would be a great recipe to make with the kiddos, especially since the chocolate doesn't get too hot.  It's almost magical when the balloon pops and you are left with a perfect chocolate bowl.  I think  I may use my leftover bowls for ice cream, or perhaps a fruit and cream parfait.

Until next time!

57 comments:

Morgan said...

Ohhh.... these look WONDERFUL! I love how creative and experimental your projects are... and your photography is getting SO good. Seriously! I love it!

April said...

Oh, I can't wait to make these little cups!! they look great!

Natalie... said...

Wow this is such a good imaginative idea! Love it so much!! Yumm!

The Blonde Duck said...

They're so cute!

Ingrid said...

I can TOTALLY see my babygirl having a blast making these! Thanks!
~ingrid

Mara... said...

I LOVE this!! What a super clever idea! I want to try this RIGHT NOW! I wish I had some of those balloons, I'm going to the store as soon as it stops raining. :-) And thanks for the chai whipped cream recipe, that sounds delicious too!

Erika from The Pastry Chef At Home said...

This post brings me back! I remember making little chocolate bowls with balloons like this when I was a teenager. I love that you animated the photo!

ps: cute header photo!

Memória said...

I love the animated photo!!! These chocolate cups and creme look fantastic!

Gala said...

Thanks for the great pictures and the idea!

Jennifer said...

So creative!!!! Im trying this!!

Jessica said...

Ooh these look like so much fun! I've always wondered how people make cups with chocolate.

cookies and cups said...

How cute! My kids will go crazy for these!

Sue Sparks said...

I look forward to your posts because you always seem to have something interesting up your sleeve! No pressure:) Your chocolate bowls look beautiful and I love the little "movie" :) Beautiful from beginning to end!

A home far away said...

Wow that looks yummie!

Have a great day!
Hugs Gunilla in Singapore

Kathleen said...

Oh my gosh I love your blog! These chocolate vessels are wonderful and I love how you show how to make them step by step.

Dina said...

those are darling. love the video!

DC said...

I love this idea, and would love to try it. however, I have a latex allergy and would have a hard time inflating, working with, and then eating out of food in contact with the balloons. Do you have any suggestions for alternatives (preferably household items)? Thanks in advance!

Syndi said...

You are now my new favorite person in the world!

I am looking at older posts to see what i've missed!!!!

SprinkleBakes said...

Thanks guys! Such beautiful, creative people commenting in my little blog. (Aww, shucks!)

To DC- oh boy. The dreaded latex allergy. I've been pondering this for a bit, and although it's not quite as satisfying as popping a balloon, painting the inside of a silicone muffin pan with chocolate makes a beautiful chocolate vessel. It un-molds easily without sticking, and the outside is prettier than the inside. That's really more ideal since you won't see the inside of the vessel once you fill it! I did look into vinyl balloons, but they are usually large in size, and not cost effective for this type of project. Will keep my eyes open for a better alternative!

Abiose said...

this is really wow! great work and i love it. trying to think of an alternative cos i know those with latex allergy are bound to avoid this. i love the idea.would let u know as soon as i get one.

Rachel@oneprettything.com said...

Those are so much fun, I love it! I might have to do these for an early Valentine's dessert. Thanks so much, I'll be linking.

Sandy said...

This is amazing! I love the little picture tutorial of you cutting the balloon, it definitely adds a nice touch to this post. I am sooo going to make these some day... hmmm what to fill it with, the possibilities are ENDLESS!!

Little Red Bus said...

This sounds like a blast, and wayyyy too much fun! Shared your idea on my blog, and hope to try it out soon!
Cheers,
Ann

Gorby family blog said...

Thanks for posting this! I made the chocolate bowls and filled them with a peanut butter mousse because I didn't have chai mix. They were a hit!

Katrina said...

so cool! I'll definitely be making some of these!

Heather, too said...

I made these the other day for dessert with friends, and could not have been happier with the results! I filled them with whipped cream and berries, and piped the leftover chocolate into swirls and flowers for garnish. They looked so impressive (drawing oohs and aahs from the crowd), but your instructions made the process easy breezy

Nachiketa said...

WOW!!!! this is totally fabulous...

Goes on my Bake-List on the highest priority... am really smitten with this idea....

You blog is very nice....

Cheers,
The Variable, Crazy Over Desserts - Nachiketa
Catch me on facebook @ Crazy Over Desserts

sasha said...

They look like alot of fun, the kids and I are going to have to make some!!

Anonymous said...

I noticed Bakerella did something like these 4 months after your post

Viagra Online said...

how nice is to see all these images, and how all these ballons look covered with chocolates, I am very lucky to find this amazing recipe, I am really sure that I will prepare it at home.

Purnima@a creative project said...

wow.. This is so amazing!! I totally loving it!! Love the way you have explained it ..so detailed!!

Anonymous said...

You rock.

Anonymous said...

This is absolutely innovative! I learn so much from you!

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detox drug said...

I love love love this recipe!! I have had chocolate chai cups before but its never been that great...this seems like a great recipe b/c of the brownie mix!! thanks so much for the tips! :)

Online Generic Viagra said...

I always like to plan ahead and prepare early, but this recipe requires little of that.
Nice Creativity...........
Keep Posting.....
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Levitra said...

Magnificent :) Looks delicious and easy to make! I will try that for my birthday party next week. I am sure ppl will love it!

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very good information.i like it
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tabata timer said...

Looks delicious i have to make one of those myself :)

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acheter xenical said...

SO many times I read stupid post but this time I must say i'm impressed! Well done! Cheers!

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Nice, that looks so delicious :> i have to try that!

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Lexy said...

Hi,
Fatabulous Blog....just found you and am having a blast going all the way back.
Question - how did you get the cup in the second photo to be so smooth on the "lip" of the cup compared to the jagged edge on the first photo? Can't wait to try this. Thanks for your creative dessert ideas.

Lexy said...

Woops...forgot to "subscribe by email"

Heidi Hawyes said...

This is such an awesome idea! Thanks for sharing

Shraddha said...

to make chai latte whipped cream did you use liquid heavy whipping cream? or the semi solid whipped toping?

Anonymous said...

I am definitely making these soon!! I read a few of the comments and I may or may not have a solution to the latex allergy...What about a light bulb? I'm not sure how safe it would be but same shape as the balloon, hope this helps.

dryoasis88 said...

I love this idea, but I failed somehow in the execution. I missed the step to transfer the chocolate into another bowl and one of the balloons hit the side of the bowl and popped with chocolate all over it. My kitchen will never be the same! Note to self: Always read the directions COMPLETELY before starting!

I am cleaning up and trying again though. This time, I will be more careful :-)

Duby said...

I wonder - could i make these ahead of time and store them in teh freezer ?

GLUTEN FREE SOY SAUCE said...

I really enjoy reading this post, thanks for sharing.

LeChurro said...

Great and sweet idea!

Studio Gal Shannon said...

I'm doing these for a wedding with berries & cream.
HOW MANY CHOCOLATE BOWLS DID YOUR BAG OF GHIRADELLI MAKE?
AND DO YOU REMEMBER HOW MUCH CREAM FOR THOSE BOWLS?

Thanks so much!

Anonymous said...

This is wonderful!!!!! For the latex allergy how bout plastic wrap cover a bowl maybe

Ava said...

You said these would be easy to make...
I tried making these for my girlfriend. All was going good. Then I put the waterballoon into the chocolate. It wouldn't spread very good on the waterballoon so I used a spoon to move it over it more. It turned out ok. Satisfied with how it looked I started to move on to grab another waterballoon. But then the waterballoon exploded! Bits of the waterballoon and chocolate WENT EVERYWHERE all over the counter and me. My girlfriend walked in front from the front door right after this happened. Now she thinks it's some kind of odd fetish now! Gee thanks!!!

Heather Baird said...

Oh dear! Haha! So sorry you were chocolate-covered! This will happen if the chocolate is too warm - also larger balloons will hold up better. Might try that next time!

Mallorca Cupcake said...

I love it!!! Great idea... I love your blog. Thanks.

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