Chocolate-Caramel Easter Eggs
- EGG SHELLS:
- 2 1/2 pounds imported bittersweet chocolate chopped, see * Note
- 3 large plastic egg mold sets (total of six 4 1/4" by 3" half-cup egg halves)
- 2 small plastic egg mold sets (total of eight 3" by 2 1/2" quarter-cup egg halves)
- CARAMEL FILLING:
- 3 cups sugar
- 3/4 cup water
- 1/2 cup whipping cream
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter - (1 stick)
- 1/3 cup sour cream
- CHOCOLATE FILLING:
- 3/4 cup whipping cream
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter - (3/4 stick) cut into pieces
- 1 pound imported bittersweet chocolate chopped (do not use unsweetened)
- 6 tablespoons sour cream
- Reserved chocolate in double boiler
- TO DECORATE:
- 8 yards of colorfast silk ribbons more or less
* Note: Or imported white chocolate (such as Lindt or Callebaut) or 1 1/4 pounds of each chocolate. Do not use unsweetened chocolate.
To make Egg Shells: Line cookie sheet with aluminum foil. Melt chocolate in top of double boiler over simmering water, stirring frequently until smooth and candy thermometer registers 115 degrees for bittersweet and 105 degrees for white chocolate. (If making both bittersweet chocolate and white chocolate eggs, melt chocolates separately in two double boilers.)
Remove chocolate from over water. Spoon chocolate into 1 set of large egg molds, filling molds completely (do not fill decorative base section of mold). Turn mold over above prepared cookie sheet, allowing excess chocolate to spill out. Shake mold to produce uniformly thick shell. Turn mold right side up. Run fingertip gently around edge of eggs to remove excess chocolate. Refrigerate.
Tilt foil-lined sheet with melted chocolate over top of double boiler, scraping chocolate into double boiler. Reheat to 115 degrees for bittersweet and 105 degrees for white chocolate, stirring frequently. Repeat coating process with remaining 2 large egg mold sets and 2 small egg mold sets, removing chocolate from over water while working and reheating chocolate after each set of egg molds is coated. Refrigerate molds. (If using white chocolate, the molds will need a double coating. Refrigerate molds after first coating is cold. Refill with barely lukewarm chocolate, shake out excess and wipe edges clean, creating double-thick shell.) Return remaining chocolate on foil to top of double boiler and set aside. Refrigerate molds while making caramel filling.
To make Caramel Filling: Stir sugar and water in heavy large saucepan over low heat until sugar dissolves. Increase heat and boil without stirring until syrup turns deep amber, washing down sides of pan with pastry brush dipped into water and swirling pan occasionally.
Remove from heat. Add whipping cream and butter (mixture will bubble vigorously) and whisk until smooth. Whisk in sour cream. Let caramel filling stand just until barely cool (mixture will be sticky), stirring occasionally, about 50 minutes.
Spoon 2 scant tablespoons caramel into each small egg half. Spoon 1/4 cup caramel into each large egg half. Refrigerate while making chocolate filling.
To make Chocolate Filling: Bring whipping cream and butter to simmer in heavy medium saucepan, stirring until butter melts. Add chocolate and whisk until smooth and melted. Remove chocolate filling from heat. Whisk in sour cream. Let stand until cool but still pourable, stirring occasionally, about 30 minutes.
Spoon filling over caramel in all egg halves, filling to 1/16-inch below top edge. Chill until set, about 40 minutes.
To Assemble: Rewarm reserved melted chocolate in top of double boiler to 115 degrees for bittersweet and 105 degrees for white chocolate. Remove chocolate from over water. Working quickly, spread enough melted chocolate (use bittersweet for dark eggs and white chocolate for white eggs) atop 1 set of filled eggs just to cover. Use icing spatula to scrape excess chocolate from eggs and clean sides. Place mold in refrigerator. Repeat with remaining egg molds. Refrigerate all molds until chocolate is firm, about 1 hour.
Line cookie sheets with aluminum foil. Remove 1 egg mold from refrigerator. Turn mold over onto foil. Gently bend and twist mold side to side several times to release halves of chocolate eggs. Repeat unmolding process with remaining eggs.
Rewarm remaining melted chocolate in top of double boiler until warm to touch. Turn bottom half of 1 egg over so flat sides face up. Spread small amount of melted chocolate over flat side of egg, leaving 1/4-inch border. Working quickly, cover bottom half of egg with corresponding top half of egg and press together gently. Refrigerate whole egg. Repeat with remaining egg halves and melted chocolate. (Can be prepared 2 weeks ahead. Store in airtight container in refrigerator.)
To Decorate: Wrap ribbons around seam of each egg and tie bow at top. Refrigerate until ready to eat. Serve eggs chilled.
This recipe yields 3 large eggs and 4 small eggs.