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Chocolate Basket

 Chocolate Basket
YOU’LL GIVE a few fun new twists to “sweets for my sweet” when you weave this good-enough-to-eat basket. It’s made from chocolate. In time for Valentine’s Day, Crafting Traditions home economists quickly pulled together this container using easy-to-create chocolate “clay” that’s completely edible. And not only is it a cinch to finish, it’s long-lasting, too. You can store your basket safely in a s
1 ServingsPrep: 1 hour + chilling

Ingredients

  • Materials needed:
  • Thirteen 3-inch pretzel sticks
  • Flexible plastic cover to a 16-ounce container (such as sour cream), about 4-1/2 inches diameter x 1/4 inch deep
  • Paper towels
  • Wire rack
  • 1-quart bowl
  • Waxed paper
  • Chocolate clay:
  • 10 ounces dark, milk or white chocolate candy coating, melted
  • 1/3 cup light corn syrup

Directions

  • Combine candy coating and corn syrup just until blended. Spread onto
  • a sheet of waxed paper to 3/8-in. thickness (about an 8-in. square).
  • Let stand, uncovered, at room temperature for 2-3 hours or until dry
  • to the touch. Wrap tightly with plastic wrap; let stand overnight.
  • Use immediately or store up to 2 weeks.
  • Building the Base
  • 1. Dip pretzels completely in melted chocolate candy coating or
  • chocolate chips. Place on a wire rack and chill for 10 minutes.
  • Reserve remaining chocolate. (Pretzels may be prepared a day ahead.)

2 of 2

Chocolate Basket (continued)

Directions (continued)

  • Be certain plastic cover is clean and dry. Place two dampened paper
  • towels in the bottom of the bowl and position cover on the towels(to
  • hold it in place). Place ends of the chocolate-coated pretzels
  • around outer edge of cover, resting the other ends against the side
  • of the bowl to form the supports for the basket sides (photo 1).
  • Spoon or pour melted chocolate into cover (photo 1) until it is 1/8
  • in. from the top; reserve remaining chocolate. Be certain chocolate
  • surrounds all pretzel sticks. Chill until chocolate is firm, about
  • 30 minutes.
  • Remove from the bowl. Carefully loosen the edges of the plastic
  • cover and remove. Set base on waxed paper.
  • Make three ropes about 20 in. long; braid and set aside. Remelt
  • remaining chocolate and place a drop on the top of pretzels. Lay
  • braided ropes on top (photo 3), blending the ends to create a
  • finished edge. If pretzels break, “reglue” with melted chocolate;
  • chill until set.
  • Beginning to Weave
  • 2. Knead a 1-inch ball of Chocolate Clay until pliable but not soft
  • and roll into 1/4-in.-thick ropes. Beginning on the inside of a
  • pretzel, loosely weave rope around pretzels (photo 2).
  • Repeat, adding the next rope by overlapping slightly and pressing
  • ends together. Continue to weave between pretzels until the top of
  • the pretzels is reached, ending the last rope on the inside of a
  • pretzel.
  • Finishing the Basket
  • 3. Make three ropes about 20 in. long; braid and set aside. Remelt
  • remaining chocolate and place a drop on the top of pretzels. Lay
  • braided ropes on top (photo 3), blending the ends to create a
  • finished edge. If pretzels break, “reglue” with melted chocolate;
  • chill until set. Yield: 1-1/4 cups.
Editor's Note: Chocolate confectionery coating is found in baking sections of most grocery stores. It is sometimes labeled “almond bark” or “candy coating” and is often sold in bulk (1 to 1-1/2 pounds). You can also substitute 1-3/4 cups semisweet or milk chocolate chips. Finished size: Basket is about 7 inches wide x 3-1/2 inches deep.