This is a lovely project to do with children on the run up to Easter.....
We've been making a silicone bakeware mould for quite some time now to make small chocolate eggs, cakes or even soaps which you can see here. They finish about 50% larger than a standard hens egg. Absolutely awesome to make as a chocolate shell and fill with homemade fondant or caramel. Just big enough to make as a small hollow egg and fill with jelly beans, smarties or similar.
Well - you wanted one a bit bigger. Not massive, just bigger enough to make a hollow chocolate shell to house a smaller chocolate egg, chocolate bunny or simply decorate and wrap in cellophane.
This photo shows the size difference between the two moulds quite well. The bigger one is around twice the volume of the smaller one..
On a rainy January weekend, Oliver and I had a play with these. I wish I'd taken some chocolate face photos - but alas, my camera battery went flat at a really inappropriate time.
First of all,
we I coated the inside of the moulds with molten chocolate, letting each layer dry and then repeating until all the cells had about 3 coats.
These are the bigger sized eggs, coated and waiting to fully harden.
I'm glad I was not paying too much attention to how much chocolate Oliver managed to consume that afternoon. I think I'd be horrified if I actually knew !
Then, I made the marshmallow for the middle of the smaller eggs.
James Martin's marshmallow recipe has never let me down and results in fluffy light mallowy pillows of gorgeousness. I normally flavour it with rosewater instead of vanilla and just simply cut into squares and roll in cornflour and icing sugar mix. However, it seemed like a good idea to try using this as a filling for some chocolate eggs.
As normal, it worked and set beautifully. In my opinion, these needed a little bit of something else. Next time, I'd put a big dollop of homemade strawberry / raspberry jam in the middle or perhaps some gooey caramel.
Marshmallows - James Martin
9 sheets sheets leaf gelatine
450 g sugar
1 tbsp liquid glucose
200 ml water
2 large egg whites
2 tsp vanilla extract (or try rosewater !)
Lightly oil one of these silicone multi-purpose trays unless you plan to make filled eggs with your marshmallow.
Soak the gelatine sheets in 140mls of cold water and set aside.
Put the sugar, glucose and water into a heavy base saucepan and boil until the temperature reaches 127deg C on a sugar thermometer. Slide in the gelatine sheets in water and stir to dissolve.
Immediately remove from the heat and transfer into a metal jug or another empty saucepan.
Whip the egg whites into soft peaks and then start pouring in the hot syrup whilst still whisking. You really need a stnad mixer where possible with this. I totally burnt out my last hand mixer making a previous batch of marshmallow as I managed to bung up the vents with mallow whilst whisking !
Don't panic over adding syrup too quickly, jusst keep the beaters going flat out for about 10 > 15 mins. It WILL thicken up and get really fluffy. I thought I wrecked my last attempt as I poured the whole lot of the hot syrup in to the eggs in one go after forgetting to decant first into another pan. The stuff was red hot and although it went pancake flat to start with, it whipped up to scratch no problem.
You know your mallow is ready when the mallow from the beaters starts setting as it runs back to the bowl. Mine was spoonable at this point - but was standing up from the bowl to the beaters on it's own
Spoon into the chocolate shells (I think we made about 20 eggs - including 12 large ones !) from this batch of mallow. Once it's set, cover with some more chocolate.
The small egg mould is a super size for filling with mallow / caramel etc. The large one works far better to hide smaller eggs or sweets inside or simply leave hollow. You could fill them with mallow. I dropped a load into nursery the next day with Oliver. There weren't any complaints and none came home again, but they were on the verge of requiring a knife and fork (if you know what I mean !!)
Small sized egg in blue checked mug, large size egg in the bunny mug.
Sarah-Jane Nash, http://www.siliconemoulds.com/ - silicone bakeware, Feb 2010