Recipe and post by Katie Colgary
Chocolate makes everything better. Bright, luscious strawberries, while near perfect on their own, are heavenly when draped in chocolate. At my supermarket this weekend, there were endless displays of chocolate and strawberries, teasing me mere seconds after the automatic doors closed behind me. The strawberries were half their normal price and looked plump and perky. They were begging to be lovingly dipped in hot, melted chocolate. Some chocolate bars were more than 50% off and I would be a fool to leave the store without them! You can make these for your sweetheart, yourself, your roommate, your mom, your neighbor; you get my point. Some women love Valentine’s Day, some women hate it, and others are indifferent, but most women love chocolate!
Although I follow a primarily “vegan” diet, chocolate is the one ingredient I was unwilling to give up. Over the past few months, I’ve done a little consumer research and scoured the shelves of my local marketplace. Some varieties of dark chocolate (especially the high quality brands) are vegan, although not marketed as such. Others are specifically labeled as “vegan friendly,” although their ingredients list is no different. The labels can often be misleading, but the ingredients list does not lie. While pure chocolate in its many forms (cacao beans, nibs, butter, powder, liquor, or paste) contains no dairy, some chocolate manufacturers add ingredients derived from dairy such as milk, milk powder, casein or whey to their products. The cheaper the chocolate, the more likely you are to find a lengthy ingredients list of non-chocolaty things which may or may not include dairy, additives, emulsifiers, sweeteners or hard-to-pronounce chemicals. In short, the best chocolates tend to have the shortest list of ingredients.
I made these chocolate covered strawberries with a bar of Scharffen Berger “Fine Artisan” semi-sweet chocolate. Their ingredients list is short in comparison to some of their competitors making this is my go-to bar for all things chocolate: cookies, cakes, waffles, and strawberries.
On a day that begs to be celebrated with wine and chocolate, pour you (and yours) a glass or two, cuddle up with a plate of chocolate covered strawberries and enjoy!
Chocolate Covered Strawberries
☐ 1- 3 oz. bar of Scharffen Berg semi-sweet chocolate
☐ 1 tsp coconut oil (refined)
☐ 1 pint of strawberries
☐ 10-12 toothpicks
☐ Make shift double boiler
☐ Tray and wax paper
1. Wash and dry the strawberries. Stick one toothpick through the stem end of each strawberry. Line a tray with wax paper.
2. Bring 1-2” of water to a simmer in a saucepan. Arrange a make shift double boiler by setting a large glass bowl on top, making sure that the glass does not touch the water.
3. Add the chocolate and coconut oil to the glass bowl. Stir to combine and melt together.
4. Using a heatproof spoon, drape the bottom two thirds of each strawberry with chocolate. No need to be too meticulous here- they will taste delicious no matter what they look like! Let excess chocolate drip from the tip of the strawberry back into your glass bowl then place your strawberry on your wax paper-lined tray. Repeat with remaining strawberries.
5. Once all strawberries are dipped, transfer your tray to the fridge until chocolate shell is hardened.
6. If you have excess chocolate left over, don’t throw it away! Instead, add a handful of nuts, dried fruit, or coffee beans to the bowl, stir to combine, and then place on a wax paper-lined tray using two forks. Cool to harden and enjoy!