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Chocolate Strawberries: 

- from Eleanor

- organic seems to taste best and work best for me, and they tend to be more regular shapes and smaller, too.

Chocolate - I've tried this recipe with all kinds, and the darker the chocolate the more people like it. You can use milk or white chocolate, but you have to have a very sweet tooth and they melt much more easily. I tend to use organic, especially Green and Black.

Tiny paper cases for petit four making - the ones that look like cake cases but are much smaller.

I tend to use one 4oz (100g) bar of chocolate for each punnet of strawberries, which I suppose is about 8oz (200g) but then some of the strawberries are usually a bit mushy so I eat them while I'm cooking... if you are determined to use every strawberry, try 6oz of chocolate to 8oz strawberries to be on the safe side;-)

What to do:
1) Melt all the chocolate. I usually do this in the microwave, by breaking up the chocolate into pieces and then cooking on high for 1 minute 30 seconds, stirring, and then cooking on high for 30 seconds at a time until it's all melted. Be careful not to cook too long or really weird things happen to the chocolate. Or you can put a pan of water on to simmer, and melt the chocolate in a bowl on top of the pan of water.

2) Lay out the paper cases on a sheet of greaseproof paper (you don't have to but it saves a bit of clearing up afterwards - believe me, our kitchen is covered with drips of chocolate and so am I by the time I've finished;-).

3) When the chocolate is melted, take each strawberry by the leafy bit at the tip, and dip it into the chocolate, tipping the bowl around or using a teaspoon to make sure it's covered right up to the leaf.

4) Put the strawberry in the paper case. They take about half an hour to set at room temperature. Warning: These are best made on the day or the day before at earliest. If you put them in the fridge they do last but they go a bit mushy inside. They melt really easily and are very very messy to eat. I've tried this recipe with maraschino cherries too, and they're quite nice, and with glace cherries which I personally don't like but proved surprisingly popular. 

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