The Liquor Berry Chocolates

Decadent! Delicious! Delectable! This is a great little treat to soothe your sweet tooth. I sometimes make these at Christmas, wrap them in plastic wrap and tie with a bow as a nice little gift for people! But since it’s the high point of berry season, and I had 5 lbs of blueberries to use up quick, I figured I’d do a summer run and post the results!

This recipe comes from a coworker – I don’t recall what liquor she suggested to use, but I did a lot of experimenting last year and came up with a few favorites! Enjoy!

Ingredients:
Approx. 1 lb blueberries (or other berry) I’m guessing a bit at this amount – I didn’t actually weight them…but it seemed like less than a quarter of my 5-lb box.
Approx. 1 lb good quality chocolate (I used Callebaut dark as it is dairy free and melts well)
Several ounces of your favorite liquor or liqueur

Your ratio of berries-to-chocolate can vary depending on what you like; I find this amount makes a nice bark-like candy.
Note: the allergy concerns I’ve noted will depend entirely on the chocolate and the liquor that you choose. Please read all labels.

I have tried this recipe with the following:
Kraken (dark spiced rum): good, but a bit strong
Glayva: excellent, but I’d rather just drink it
Disaronno: Absolutely fantastic
Drambuie: good, but also a bit strong

Next time I’d like to try out Peach Schnapps, Triple Sec, Creme de Cacao, or a fruit-infused vodka.

Anyway. On with the show!

First, dehydrate the blueberries (or other berry – I’ll just keep saying blueberries and you substitute whatever word is appropriate). To do this, I sliced them all in half and used a dehydrator on 135°F for 8-10 hours. You may also be able to do this in your oven on a super low temperature. You don’t need to completely dry them out, just remove most of the moisture so that they can reabsorb the liquor. With berries such as blueberries, it is helpful if you pierce or cut each one so the moisture can escape easier. A strawberry, blackberry, or raspberry-type berry would not require piercing as they dry fairly easily as is (though I don’t recommend drying raspberries as they tend to crumble).

Find a container you can seal up. I use old mason jars with a double-thick section of plastic wrap between the jar and the ring.

Put the blueberries into the jar or container, and add enough liquor so that the berries are covered. Close up the container and let sit. I usually leave mine at least overnight – this time I left them for 4-5 days. If you are leaving them for more than a day, make sure the berries are completely submerged or you may get mold forming on the exposed bits.

Berries in jar, soaking up the liquor.

Berries in jar, soaking up the liquor.

In a double boiler, melt the chocolate. I allow the water to boil, then turn the stove down as low as it will go – it keeps the water simmering, but the temperature isn’t high enough to burn the sugars in the chocolate. Shaving, grating, or breaking up the chocolate will help it melt faster. Stirring also speeds things along.

My double-boiler setup. Boiling water in the bottom pot, melty chocolate in the top!

My double-boiler setup. Boiling water in the bottom pot, melty chocolate in the top!


Melting the chocolate

Melting the chocolate

Strain your berries (keep the liquid – the blueberry-infused liquor is delicious too!) and spread them out on a parchment-paper or wax-paper lined cookie sheet.

To strain, I use a fine mesh sieve and a soup mug.

To strain, I use a fine mesh sieve and a soup mug.

Drizzle the chocolate over the berries.

Drizzle fo' shizzle?

Drizzle fo’ shizzle?

Allow the chocolate to cool and harden. To speed this up, put the cookie sheet into your fridge. Make sure there are no undesirable fridge odors that might taint your lovely chocolates! Once hard, break up into pieces and store in an airtight container. If you live in a warm climate, you may want to keep the treats in the fridge or freezer.

Share with your friends! If you haven’t eaten it all yourself!

PS. Friends don’t let friends eat liquor chocolates and drive. 😉

My two "flavors" - Disaronno and Drambuie this time!

My two “flavors” – Disaronno and Drambuie this time!

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