1. Peeps 2. ???? 3. Chocolate-covered peeps!
May 6, 2008 1:13 PM   Subscribe

How would one make chocolate-covered Peeps?

I want to make a batch of chocolate-coated Peeps as a sort of gag gift for a friend. I managed to get my hands on some Peeps, but have no idea how to actually get the chocolate on them. I have a stove and access to a grocery store. What sort of chocolate do I buy? Do I just melt it and dip them in? I'm pretty clueless around the kitchen, so the more details, the better.

Top priority here is appearance (they should still be recognizable as Peeps) and structural stability (they'll be shipped); taste is not a factor.
posted by 0xFCAF to Food & Drink (16 answers total)
 
All the Peep recipes you can stomach here. Never tried it. My Peeps are made for fightin'.
posted by rdn at 1:20 PM on May 6, 2008


Yeah.. basically you melts 2/3 of your chocolate (get Bakers if taste is not an issue) in a double boiler. Remove from heat, stir in the other 1/3 until melted and smooth. let it cool a little bit so you don't melt your Peeps.

Put the peeps on a cooling rack (like the wire rack in your oven, but smaller) with a baking tray underneath. Pour chocolate over them until covered. Let harden, then dip their little peep feet to get full coverage.

Done.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 1:24 PM on May 6, 2008


I don't have a double boiler - is there an easy work-around?
posted by 0xFCAF at 1:24 PM on May 6, 2008


Seems like dipping a Peep in melted chocolate would result in either a gloopy mess or a John-Merrick-like twisted freak of a Peep.

Perhaps you should freeze them first.

Ooh!

I figured it out! I HAZ DE ANSWER!

That "chocolate shell" sauce stuff you can put on ice cream!

Freeze Peep, dunk in chocolate shell. Voila.
posted by BitterOldPunk at 1:27 PM on May 6, 2008


I think you can just melt whatever chocolate you want and dip. Milk chocolate (either chips or a giant Hershey bar) will be sweeter and creamier than plain old semi-sweet chocolate chips.

Here's an a tasty-looking how-to on dipping marshmallows, which I assume would work just as well on Peeps.

In my experience with shipping (okay, receiving shipments of) baked goods and candy, the chocolate isn't likely to melt as long as you don't ship it in summer.
posted by Metroid Baby at 1:30 PM on May 6, 2008


I don't have a double boiler - is there an easy work-around?

There are some suggestions here; a double boiler is easy to improvise with a pan of water simmering on the stove into which you place a slightly smaller pan. As the link says, just be careful not to get any water in your chocolate.
posted by TedW at 1:34 PM on May 6, 2008


chocolate can be melted in a microwave if a double boiler is out of the question.
posted by phil at 1:38 PM on May 6, 2008


Buy the best quality chocolate you can afford - not gritty crap like Hershey's but something like Green & Black or Godiva.

Break the chocolate into pieces and put into a heat-proof bowl. Put the bowl over a pan of simmering water, and the chocolate will melt. Stir it around to make sure it's all properly melted.

Skewer a peep on a bamboo barbecue skewer and dip it in the chocolate until it's coated. Stand the skewer up so the chocolate will set on the peep. The easiest way to do this is to upturn a colander and put the skewers through the holes.

When the chocolate is set, put the peeps on a tray lined with greaseproof paper and refrigerate to chill properly.

Buy some little paper cases from a cake-decorating store that are the right size, along with a little chocolate box, and pack them in that.
posted by essexjan at 1:43 PM on May 6, 2008 [3 favorites]


The reason for using a double boiler, or two stacked sauce pans, is to remove the one holding chocolate away from the direct heat source. If you don't, your chocolate will burn and be nasty. The same can happen if you melt your chocolate in the microwave. Also, when melting your chocolate, stir it constantly. That will help it melt evenly.

If you get even a little bit of water in your melting chocolate, you'll cause the chocolate to seize. For dipping the peeps, this would be bad. If you were going to use the melted chocolate in a recipe with liquid ingredients, this would not be that big of a deal because you'd just have to add more liquid to the chocolate to get it back into melty smoothness.
posted by onhazier at 1:44 PM on May 6, 2008


i should add that if you decide to use a microwave you will most likely want to nuke it in short bursts. for relatively small quantities and sizes of chocolate i would suggest no more than 30 seconds. in between each round stir it and stop when the chocolate has reached the correct consistency.

depending on what type of chocolate you use tempering it can be a little tricky (this is why you are adding cold chocolate solids to your liquid mix). but honestly most commercially available chocolate is cut with wax which greatly increases the temperature range required to do this correctly.
posted by phil at 1:44 PM on May 6, 2008


I'd freeze the peeps first.

Also, when the chocolate's all melted (and yeah, use a double-boiler-substitute; just a big bowl sitting on top of a steaming little saucepan of water), you can wait for it to cool quite a bit before it re-solidifies.

Also, don't do as essexjan says -- the "best quality chocolate you can afford" is not something that goes with peeps. A 12-ounce bag of Nestles chips (either milk chocolate or semisweet) should do just fine for mass-produced marshmallow bird things.

After you dip 'em, put 'em on a piece of waxed paper, then you can put them in the fridge to make them solidify quicker. They'll keep in the fridge until you need to do the shipping. I've had good luck shipping chocolate through the mail, though I guess they'd melt if they're in heat for a while. Don't leave them on the backseat!

PROTIP: When I dip candies in chocolate, I sometimes find it's easier to just glop the chocolate on my hands, and cover the candy centers that way, rather than full-on dipping them into a bowl of chocolate. Dipping will make the shell smoother, but thicker. Hand-slopping should make a thinner shell, so they'll be more recognizeable as Peeps.
posted by Greg Nog at 2:07 PM on May 6, 2008


We're dealing with peeps here people! OxFCAF might not need to invest in a double boiler or tempering chocolate skills for this here experiment! What you may want to try instead is a product called Chocolate Bark or Coating Chocolate (which you should be able to purchase fairly readily at your major grocery store and/or craft mega store) which is specifically made to be a mostly failsafe candy coating. It's not actually real chocolate, but peeps aren't up there in the all-natural category either...

Melt it according to the package directions and then follow essexjan's directions for dipping and cooling!
posted by rosebengal at 2:10 PM on May 6, 2008


For your double boiler, just put a wide-bottomed heat-safe metal or glass bowl over a pot of gentling boiling water. Ideally you want a bowl + pot combo so that the lip of the pot just covers the entire bottom of the bowl but doesn't come up the sides.
posted by junesix at 2:19 PM on May 6, 2008


Okay, I have had to coat things in chocolate a lot and this is the easiest, quickest method I have found:

Before doing this, I second the recommendation to freeze the peeps.

1. Spread out a sheet of wax paper on a cleared off countertop
2. Put some chocolate in a microwave-safe container. I use 4 cup Pyrex measuring cup. I prefer milk chocolate, and you can use whatever is the cheapest per ounce--chocolate chips, hershey bars, hershey kisses, whatever. As for amount--maybe half a bag of chocolate chips. Eyeball it, but you want it to be deep enough to dip the peeps in
3. Add a tablespoon or two of shortening in the cup. This will thin your chocolate out (and help keep the peeps recognizable).
4. Microwave for 20 seconds, stir, repeat. This lets you melt it evenly without ruining the chocolate.
5. Stab a peep with a toothpick, quickly dip it in your melted chocolate, twirling it to make sure it's covered. Then plunk it on the waxed paper. You can take the toothpicks out once the chocolate has set.

If your chocolate starts to harden, it's okay to microwave it a little longer, adding more chocolate and shortening as needed. Don't let water get into it, or it will thicken all up and be ruined.
posted by Polychrome at 3:47 PM on May 6, 2008


Forget the double-boiler and all that jazz. You can buy chocolate at the grocery store that is specifically made for easy dippin. It comes in a plastic container that you can put in the microwave. It's super-easy. I've dipped strawberries in it as well as pretzels.
posted by radioamy at 6:50 PM on May 6, 2008


Chill the peeps in the freezer prior to coating. This will help the chocolate set faster and reduce the chance that the peeps will melt.
posted by jedicus at 7:05 PM on May 6, 2008


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