A while back, when I posted my Chocolate Penguin Boxes, I promised I'd share some ideas to make heart shaped chocolate boxes for Valentine's Day. I know we are only a few days away from the holiday, but I just now found some time to get a few boxes made. This isn't my usual tutorial, rather a set of ideas to inspire you to create your own chocolate boxes.
The tutorial for the penguin boxes (here) shows you step-by-step instructions for creating the top, bottom and sides of each box using chocolate (or candy melts/confectionery coating) and modeling chocolate. All you have to do is use a heart shaped cookie cutter instead of an egg shaped cutter. To make the sides of the box, set your heart shaped cookie cutter on top of the box base and set your strip of modeling chocolate inside. Cut it to fit inside the cookie cutter creating a heart shape. Make the sides of your box 1/2" to 2" in height so that the candy you fill the box with fits nicely inside. Decorate your boxes however you like, using simple designs like the one pictured above or really intricate designs like the box pictured below. You can use modeling chocolate to create your designs, or pipe chocolate on the lids, or even "glue" candy on top using chocolate. There are so many possibilities. Fill your boxes with chocolate, truffles, candies, or nuts.
This is the first box I ever created while studying with Ewald Notter at his pastry school about ten years ago. the dots are made by piping on chocolate, the rose is made of modeling chocolate that has been airbrushed with red coloring, and the black and white ribbons are made of chocolate that was spread onto a marble slab and scraped up with a bench scraper. Oh, and there are chocolate cigarettes (yes, that is what they call them) sticking out above the box which are made with dark and white chocolate. Yes, I know this design is a bit intimidating. Believe me, I felt the same way when I made it, but was really proud of how beautiful it turned out.
I don't want you to feel intimidated. Let me assure you that even kids, with some guidance, can make these boxes. Five of the boxes on the right of this picture were made by 8-10 year old children. I taught this project to 16 kids in a hands-on class and each box was completely created by the kids. The even made their own modeling chocolate. My sample for the class was decorated with polka dots. Simple enough for any adult or child to recreate. I brought along the rose box pictured here just to show the kids, and a few of them even made their own versions. I wish I would have gotten pictures of all the boxes, so you could see theirs, but some of the kids had to rush out of class when their parents arrived, so I didn't get pics of all of their creations. Each one was truly unique.
How about his design? Super simple, yet really elegant, right? It took two minutes to decorate this box. I pressed a long tube of white modeling chocolate out of a clay extruder and placed it in a swirl pattern on top of this dark chocolate heart. If you don't have a clay extruder, just roll a long thin log instead. For instructions on using a clay extruder with modeling chocolate see my recipe for Caramel Apple Cats.
This smiley face box also took me a few minutes to decorate. I colored white chocolate pink to make the top and base of this box and colored my white modeling chocolate pink to make the sides of the box. I cut out two larger white circles and two smaller and two dark circles to make the eyes. A long dark smile is capped off with rosy red dots. That's it. So quick and easy.
If you want detailed instructions for making, coloring, cutting, and decorating with modeling chocolate read my Chocolate Making Tips page and see my 12 Days of Sweet Designs.
I hope this has inspired you to make your own chocolate boxes. If you do, I'd love see pictures of your creations. You can send them to firstname.lastname@example.org
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Items I use to decorate my chocolate heart boxes. (commission earned for sales)