I read that Italian godparents make chocolate Easter eggs for their godchildren. Sounds like a lovely tradition to me. In addition, I discovered a recipe for Homemade Cadbury Creme Eggs. Was it possible or just an Internet gimmick? I promised my newsletter readers that I would be giving it a try.
The only name I see on the recipe is Scoochmaroo. She deserves full credit for this recipe. You can see her original recipe here. Had I only noticed the button to the right of her recipe, I wouldn't have learned how to do this the hard way. (Note to self: read all instructions before covering self in chocolate and sugar.)
There aren't very many ingredients in this little project. And I should add that it's much more a project that it is cooking.
1 12-ounce bag of milk chocolate chips
1/4 cup butter
3 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon salt
turmeric or yellow food coloring
The first thing you do is melt the chocolate. I usually melt chocolate in the microwave, either at half power or in very short bursts of 30-50 seconds. Chocolate will fool you in the microwave. See the little unmelted chips in the photo below? They're completely melted, just like the center. After each short burst, stir the chocolate with a fork to see if it has melted yet.
Then the fun part. Apparently, I have not missed my calling by not being a chocolatier. You can see my imperfections below. But, hey, they're going on the inside of the eggs, so no one will notice them, right? I found the back of a spoon worked best to smooth (very loose use of that word) the chocolate around the form. As the picture indicates, this is a somewhat messy proposition. Fortunately, I had placed a piece of waxed paper on the counter as my work surface.
To speed the hardening process along, I popped the tray into the refrigerator, and then the freezer.
Meanwhile, I mixed all the other ingredients together. I don't recommend doing this by hand as it becomes quite thick. Use your handy dandy mixer. Then I removed about 2/3 of the white filling and placed it in a bowl. I'm not keen on food coloring, so I sprinkled turmeric into the remaining mixture until it reached a nice bright yellow color for the egg yolk.
I removed the tray of chocolate egg halves from the freezer, ready to pop them out. Hah! Tap, tap, tap. One fell out. Tap, tap, tap. Nothing. Wham, wham, wham. Ah, now I was getting some results. Still, were I to do this again, I might prefer to use a silicone mold that bends so that they'll pop out more easily. In the first batch, I was unsure of myself, so I made them a little bit on the thick side -- a plus if you're going to bash them from behind with a knife. I was feeling a little cocky by the time I made the second batch, and they were too thin. Fortunately, they can be repaired by adding a bit more melted chocolate to the inside for support where needed.
Next step -- filling them. Aargh. Did I mention yet how messy it is to make these? Chocolate all over my hands. The waxed paper looked like I had butchered someone who bled chocolate. In fact, I replaced it about four times. The white filling didn't want to cooperate. I leaned a spoon into it. Perfect. Except now it was in love with the spoon and not letting go. I brought a knife to the rescue. Fickle stuff left the spoon and clung to the knife. Nevertheless, I persevered with my fingers. Yes, you know what it clung to then. A dab of yellow in the middle proved equally uncooperative.
And then the chocolate halves started melting. And I had chocolate, and yellow and white filling all over my hands. I kid you not, I washed my hands after every single egg. The rest of the eggs went into the freezer and were taken out one by one to be filled.
Had I to do this over again (which I might add is extremely questionable at this point), I would temper the chocolate first. But it was too late for that, and I forged ahead, thinking I could have baked an entire Black Forest Cherry Cake from start to finish by that time.
Gluing the egg halves together proved fairly simple. A bit of melted chocolate "glue" around the edge of one did the trick very nicely. Not so nice was trying to smooth the outside of the egg where the halves joined. Yes, more chocolate on the hands. I'm hoping one doesn't absorb calories through the skin.
Too late in the process I had the brilliant notion to stick the fillings into the freezer (which I would have done sooner, had I read all the instructions). Oh, so lovely to work with! See the nice little egg centers below. Oh well, maybe next time. (Fat chance.)
And this is the result. 11 eggs. One broke beyond repair. Not perfect by any means. But you know what? According to my godsons and their mother, Susan, they taste remarkably like Cadbury Creme Eggs!
My godsons are on notice, however, that they should take careful note of these eggs, because while I do love my godsons, these are likely to be the only chocolate Easter eggs this godmother will ever make for them. Mr. Cadbury, I am more than happy to fork over a few dollars for your perfect eggs!
Susan summed it up beautifully, though -- "Boys, enjoy the eggs. There's a lot of love in these eggs."
Aww. Maybe if I bought a silicone form next year and . . . .