When brainstorming, trying to come up with new ideas for ways to make or decorate baked goods, a good place to start is right where you are. It is most often a good idea to look around at what you have to work with and go from there. Think of new ways to work with ingredients you already know, but might not have been using to their fullest potential. One fantastic ingredient for exploring new recipes and ways to decorate is white chocolate, specifically the Merckens white chocolate wafers. If you have some of these lying around, you likely have plenty of new ideas just waiting for you to bring them out. Here are just a few of the ways white chocolate can be used throughout the kitchen.
What are white chocolate wafers?
White chocolate wafers are chips that are made to be melted down. They are not like ordinary white chocolate chips which can hold their shape even when baked or cooked through in a dough. This type of white chocolate is meant to melt down to a smooth, creamy consistency, then become more firm once it dries down. They are traditionally melted in a double burner, but could also be thrown into a microwave if carefully supervised.
Make Chocolate Bark
With melted Merckens white chocolate wafers, you have a very easy setup to create chocolate bark. All you really need to do to make this happen is to melt down the chocolate wafers, then mix your toppings into it, and spread it over a sheet tray lined with wax paper. This is where you can get creative, adding the individual components to create a flavor profile. You can make a winter treat using crushed peppermint candies sprinkled inside as a sweet and fresh treat. You could also go all the way sweet and add chocolate crumbles to the bark spread to create the popular cookies and cream duo. A more clever way to play with flavor is to add a sort of trail mix topping with crushed pretzels, dried fruits, and mixed nuts. This creates a fun salty and sweet combination. Once you have decided on the toppings and mixed them in, you can just leave the pan in the refrigerator to harden and slice up the pieces to serve.
Decorate Baking Projects
One really exciting advantage that white chocolate has over regular chocolate is the versatility in color. Just as you might think, white chocolate can hold onto a new color using food dye very easily. You can either buy Merckens white chocolate in its normal, neutral white color, or you can get one of the colored options like green, pink, or blue. This is where it gets really fun to work with because you do not even need to make a chocolate dish for Merckens white chocolate to come in handy. It just needs to be a dish that can handle a little bit of the chocolate on top. Once you melt down the chocolate wafers in whatever color you want, you can pour that into a decorating bag and pipe it over your baked goods. The chocolate will harden once it is dry, so you can make whatever design you want and let it set into place. You could also skip the bag, and drizzle the white chocolate straight onto the baked goods using a spoon. This creates a more simple, effortless look to the finished product.
Use As a Dip
Just as you consider how versatile Merckens white chocolate wafers are, they go one step further by proving their use as a dip for just about any treat you want. You can dip plenty of things, from sweet to salty into melted white chocolate and let it dry down as a decorative element combined with an addition to taste. Dip anything sweet from cookies to rice cereal treats into a bowl or pot of warm melted chocolate halfway, remove, and let it dry on a pan with parchment paper lining. You can go down the sweet and salty route by dipping some pretzel rods into the chocolate and gently rolling them into something else like chocolate cookie crumbles to add texture and flavor. For something a little bit more fresh, you can take either fresh fruits like strawberries or dried fruits like apricots and dip them into the melted white chocolate as well. It involves little preparation time but creates a beautiful product in the end.
With all of these ideas for an ingredient you likely already had, you should have no trouble thinking up new ways to work with white chocolate. To help you stretch your creative wings, Stover & Company is glad to provide you with Merckens white chocolate wafers in an assortment of colors to play with. Start melting some chocolate and let’s see where that takes you.