I love berries. If there were a world in which only one type of fruit was allowed to exist, I’d 100% choose berries. Drupes come in a close second (oooh botany terms in your food columns, watch out), but luscious as they are, they just can’t compare to that tart, seedy goodness of”¦ wait, am I talking about berries or bordellos now? Right, berries. Excellent.
Now, I love a good strawberry dipped in sugar (granulated or powdered, I’m not picky). I love shoving raspberries onto my fingers to pretend that I’ve got squishy claws or a terrible manicure (this game is also fun with Bugles). I love throwing any berry into sweet dough and creating some sort of “healthy” dessert that’s really a chimera of cake and fruit. But the best thing you can do to a berry is, well, the best thing you can do to most any food item: you dip the B in chocolate.
I’m going to warn you now that for years, I was melting the chocolate all wrong. I’ve just dropped chunks of chocolate straight into a saucepan and kept the heat on real low while stirring frequently to prevent overheating or burning. According to my sources, by which I mean three friends and the Internet, you can melt chocolate in a microwave. Sure, that sounds all well and good, but somehow I always end up burning the chocolate using that method. Microwave Cooking For One would end with my house on fire and the neighborhood filling with the aroma of electrified milk.
The preferred way to melt chocolate is to use a double boiler. Double boilers are apparently things you can buy. I don’t know, I haven’t seen one in the flesh. They keep stocking them next to waffle-makers and once I see one of those bad boys, it’s all over for me: I croon to them, gently, sweetly that nothing compares 2 them. Fortunately for me and everyone else who can’t have a kitchen appliance for every little cooking whim, you can sort of mimic a double boiler by getting a saucepan, filling it with water, and then putting a glass bowl over top of the pan. See, the water heats up, heating the air above it which then heats the bowl, and all that hot hot action melts your chocolate in a gentle, temperature-controlled fashion.
So once you melt the chocolate, you grab your assorted berries and have at it. Personally, I like strawberries because they’re classics, raspberries because they’re my favorites, and blackberries because they’re delicious and the Kentucky state fruit. Sometimes, I mix and match ““ who doesn’t love a blackberry/raspberry dark chocolate cluster?
Put the dipped fruit on wax paper covered plates, set them in the fridge to harden, and baby, you got a stew, I mean, chocolate-covered fruit going. Sorry, I was channeling Carl Weathers there for a second. I’m OK now. Just let the fruit sit for about two hours in that fridge to let the chocolate totally harden.
This can be, like, oh my god, totally romantic, if you’re into that sort of thing. Just add candles, Barry Manilow, and go to town. It can also be a great dessert to bring to barbecues and whatnot. These chocolate-covered berries go especially well with (veggie) burgers and (root) beers. Either way, I’m just stoked to finally be eating this stuff again.