I made Creme-Filled Chocolates this past weekend for the very first time, although the recipe has been in our family for years. I have memories of my Mother making these for holidays and every surface of the kitchen and dining room would be covered with chocolate candies. They are so easy! You don't even have to mold them, (as pictured above) they are easily formed by hand into whatever shape you can manage. And you can flavor them with whatever essence or extract strikes your fancy.
In addition to the chocolates I've made bright and lemony pots de creme. I wanted to continue the sunny disposition of my previous post. Another welcome sign of spring, (below) my forsythia are blooming!
First, the Lemon Pots de Creme. I like this recipe because lemon zest and lemon juice are both added for maximum flavor. Most recipes only call for lemon zest.
The recipe is really very simple and you'll have it together in no time flat. The pots bake in a water bath for 35-40 minutes. Check them at 35 minutes. You don't want to over cook them or they will be rubbery. When done, the center should still wiggle a little bit as you are taking them out of the oven.
I think these should be renamed Sunshine Pots de Creme. They are so bright in color and taste!
The chocolates were really fun to make. The recipe for the creme base is floating around in cyberspace here-and-there, but I haven't found anyone who flavors them as we do. The flavors I've made this year are lemon, butter nut, orange, and my favorite, black walnut. You can also add nuts or candied fruits to the creme. For example, I flavored a portion of the creme base with black walnut extract, and then wrapped an actual walnut in the walnut creme and then dipped it in chocolate. So good!
This is how the candy base should look (above, large pic) before you flavor or color it. It will not be sticky. I decided to use a chocolate mold with most of my candies, but they are really pretty just shaped by hand too. It gives them a homemade rustic look, and it's the way I remember them best. (bottom two pics are candy creme shaped by hand)
For those of us who celebrate Easter, I think these candies would make great basket stuffers. If you are of a different religious orientation then please consider these yummy treats a celebration of spring.
Until next time!