Monday, July 2, 2012

Holy Chocolate Balls!

So I know it's like 8 P.M. and I didn't post till right now....so sorry, it was a crazy day! But alas, my house is clean! Three cheers for motivation! Anyways, when I checked out our email to see what we had received as of late, there were several awesome entries, but THIS one looked the most delicious, so I picked you Jamie! Awesome, P.S. Jamie is a great story teller most of this is all her, but I digress! Here is your Pinstrosity for today!

The Original

The Pinstrosity

First off, do you see why I call them "Holy  Chocolate Balls"? Look at that heavenly mess! Purely angelic! Oh goodness. By the way the REAL name for these delectable's are Peanut Butter Graham Cracker Balls (my title is more exciting right? right?) Our lovely Jamie followed the directions exactly! But there is a few holes in the recipe that needed some tweaking. Jamie did the foot work herself and let us know exactly what went wrong in her email:

"The recipe is pretty straight forward. Mix two ingredients together, form into balls, freeze, dip in chocolate, roll in chocolate chips, done. Sounds simple, right? Well, kinda. As I was mixing the two ingredients together, about half of the graham cracker crumbs ended up in mine, my  husband's, and my baby's mouth. Commence more grinding of graham crackers. So NOW I have my mixture of peanut butter and graham crackers. The recipe didn't say what size balls they should be (first issue here, carry on)...so I was generous and created whopping 1" balls. The allotted amounts of ingredients with this size ball gave me 16 balls instead of 24. Whatever, it's less for us to eat (great reasoning). I put them in the freezer for an hour.
The next part of the process requires those 10 invisible hands you don't have. When the chocolate was melted, I took all the balls out, stuck a toothpick in the first one and ate it. Oops. Ok, so I stuck the toothpick in the second one and dipped it in the chocolate. You need one hand to hold the toothpick, one hand to keep the bowl still and one hand to cover the ball in chocolate because the chocolate was too thick  (problem number two, we will address at the end) to move the ball around without it falling apart. Getting it covered was semi difficult and pulling it out of the chocolate was hard but possible. I immediately put it in the little, adorable, miniature chocolate chips and needed one hand to hold on to the toothpick, one hand to spoon the chips on it and one hand to keep the bowl still. Once the ball was "complete", it was freaking heavy and almost 3" wide but I managed to get it to the plate successfully.This process took time and the farther I got, the more I realized it was harder to keep the balls together. Here is what I learned and what was missing from the recipe....

1. Make the balls less than an inch because they will quadruple in size by the end. (As we saw in the picture, I mean look at them compared to the plate! Holy Chocolate Balls!)

2. Only pull a few balls out from the freezer at a time to cover in chocolate because as they sit out, they lose their firmness, fall apart and make it impossible to cover in chocolate.

Those were Jamie's suggestions here are a few we thought up as well.

3. Add milk to the chocolate to make it not so thick, it also depends on the type of chocolate your using. If you are using candy bar chocolate it is going to be THICK. If you use bakers chocolate it shouldn't get to thick, but again, nothing a little milk and stirring can't easily fix.

Marquette here with an added note (which I also put in the comments). Emilee asked me a few days ago what I do to thin chocolate when I use it and I generally use the shortening method, but I know there are other methods out there. In fact, here's a link with various methods (which include the double broiler, the shortening, milk, cream, etc). http://www.ehow.com/how_5062950_thin-melted-chocolate.html 

4. These can be done by yourself, but these seem to be better served by two, plus it's always fun to cook with a friend :)

 In conclusion, Jamie said that they rocked! Delicious! Another awesome party desert that done with the right little tweaks could be delightful to make as well as to eat!

                                             -Emilee

18 comments:

  1. I would not add milk to the chocolate. It may never set up again. Try adding a little bit of shortening or coconut oil- when you are melting the chocolate. Add a little at a time until your chocolate is workable for dipping.

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  2. Milk in chocolate can be a horrible disaster. Use a little bit of shortening instead. Also, when dipping chocolates use a spoon and just lower the ball into the chocolate, spoon more chocolate over it and then lift it back out with the spoon. Or, even better, just use your fingers. It makes a mess but you can always lick them clean when you are done. :-) and its SO much faster.

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  3. Shortening, I wouldn't have thought of that, I have always used milk, not a ton, probably a tablespoon at a time till it's the consistency I like...but next time I will try the shortening out! Thanks ladies!

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  4. I always use shortening to thin out my chocolate, and I use skewers (like you would use for fondue) for dipping instead of toothpicks, they're stronger and longer which gives you more room to work.

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  5. My tricks for making this work...I add powdered sugar and butter to the graham cracker peanut butter mix. The butter allows the balls to set up better and the powdered sugar makes them not so gooey. Add 1/4 block of parafin to the chocolate, it keeps it to a nice smooth consistency.

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  6. I have made these several time and they always turn out great! I use a double broiler with Plymouth pantry brand almond bark from Walmart. It taste great!! I throw in two balls into the pot at a time roll them around and pick them up with a fork and lay them on wax paper to dry them pop them in to the fridge for about 10 min.

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  7. Never add milk to chocolate, use a dab or two of vegetable oil until you reach the consistency you want.

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  8. I'd definitely skip the toothpicks. When dipping balls (Schweddy Balls?) I use a meat fork, the kind with two prongs. And I cringed at the adding milk suggestion. Definitely use a fat. Shortening is fine, but i usually go with canola oil.

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  9. I use a pair of chop sticks to grab the balls and dip them in the chocolate. The coating isn't as smooth after, but since you're covering it in chocolate chips, it's not really noticeable. And what a great excuse to go out for sushi - I'm just practiving my baking techniques, really!

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  10. Marquette here. Emilee asked what I do to thin chocolate when I use it and I generally use Crisco, but I know there are other methods out there. In fact, here's a link with various methods (which include the double broiler, the shortening, milk, cream, etc). http://www.ehow.com/how_5062950_thin-melted-chocolate.html

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  11. when i made this for my mom they came out exactly like the orginal. I used skippy peanut butter (creamy) already crushed gramcrackers by keebler and then regular chocolate chips medium size. I poured in the chocolate about half a bowl and heated it up in about 30 second intervels till it was done. i used a a fork i think to pick up the balls. they came out amazing. :D

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  12. How did she melt the chocolate? If she microwaved it (which I'm assuming based on the fact it was in a bowl), the chocolate would immediately start to set which would make it very thick and difficult to wrangle quickly. She'd need a double boiler to melt the chocolate and keep it on low heat as she covers the balls. I make peanut butter balls for Christmas presents every year, and it's usually a family event in which my grandmother, mother, sister, and I all work together. My sister uses two spoons to dip the balls in chocolate; set the ball on one spoon and dip it then cover it with the other spoon and turn it over and dip it again. (Also makes it easier to get the ball out if you drop it). If you add some shaved off cooking wax (buy it in a bar and shave it off with a paring knife) to the chocolate for melting, it will make the end result prettier.

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    Replies
    1. I put it on low heat on the stove and if I turned it up any more, it would burn on the bottom so the low heat I guess was allowing it to set quicker than a higher heat.

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  13. Love the Plate. It looks like a set i have but mines red. Princess House?

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    Replies
    1. They are Daniel Cremeiux from Dillards. We love them!

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  14. To keep the bowl from moving around you can put a slightly damp kitchen towel under it.

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  15. Holy crap, what a huge pin!!

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