When your 17-year-old brother wants to do something fun and crafty with you, you don’t ask any questions. In fact, your immediate response should be, “Yes, let’s do it this weekend.” That’s essentially what happened when my brother linked me to this instructional video on Facebook for “How to Make Balloon Chocolate Bowls“. I’d seen the video floating around before, but had never gotten around to trying it. Well, this past weekend, we tried it, and I think it was a pretty successful attempt.
American Thanksgiving is tomorrow and Christmas is coming up shortly after; this is a fun idea for a sweet treat over the holidays. It doesn’t require too much effort – only a little bit of patience – so read on to find out how to make these yummy chocolate bowls!
What You’ll Need
- A pack of plain standard-sized balloons
- Semi-sweet chocolate chips
- A little bit of vegetable oil
- A safety pin
- Parchment paper and a baking sheet
- A deep microwaveable bowl
- Whatever you’d like to fill your chocolate bowls with (ice cream, fruit, candy, anything!)
Step one: Melt the chocolate chips. The amount of chips used should be proportionate to the number of chocolate bowls you will be making. If you run out of chocolate – not to worry! You can always melt more. Conversely, use extra chocolate to make decorative pieces for your treat.
I melted the chocolate chips with the microwave, but you can certainly use a double-boiler. Either way, do not overheat and burn the chocolate. If microwaving, set the power level halfway, heat in intervals, and ensure that you are constantly stirring.
It is extremely important that, once the chocolate is melted, you set it aside to cool down. The chocolate must be room temperature before you use it. If you begin dipping the balloons while the chocolate is still warm, they will explode, as heat causes the air inside the balloons to expand. Trust me, that is a mess you do not want to have to clean up in your kitchen!
Step two: While the chocolate is cooling, blow up your balloons and rinse with some mild soap and water. Dry thoroughly.
Your balloons should be blown up to the size you want your bowls to be. Keep in mind that, the larger your balloon, the deeper your bowl of chocolate will need to be to ensure that the sides are covered adequately to form the curve.
Step three: Once the chocolate is cooled to room temperature and your balloons are washed and ready to go, it’s time to get on with the fun! Start by dabbing a circle of chocolate onto the parchment paper so that your bowl has a base and the balloon will not roll around on the sheet.
Step four: Lightly brush some vegetable oil onto the surface of the balloon that will be dipped into the chocolate. This will ensure that the balloon can be easily removed afterwards. You can also use a vegetable oil spray.
Step five: Dip your balloon into the chocolate. Ease it in and ensure that the chocolate coats the balloon evenly. When ready, lift the balloon out and gently shake off any excess drips. You may experience some resistance if the chocolate has begun to thicken, so be sure to do it slowly.
Step six: Place the balloon on top of the small circle of chocolate on the sheet.
Repeat until all of your balloons have been dipped. You may need to add and melt more chocolate to finish all of your bowls. Don’t forget to wait until it is at room temperature before continuing to dip!
Step seven: Slide your tray of dipped balloons into the refrigerator for about half an hour so that the chocolate can cool and harden.
Step eight: When ready, use a safety pin to poke a small hole near the top of the balloon to slowly release the air. If you have coated your balloon with vegetable oil, it should begin to shrink and loosen itself from the sides of the chocolate bowl. If this does not happen easily, deflate the balloon by gently squeezing it and then ease it out by peeling it from the inner shell of the bowl.
While the balloon shrinks, the edges of the bowl may crackle and come loose if the chocolate is too thin and delicate. To avoid this, make sure you coat as evenly as possible when dipping the balloon.
Step nine: When all of your balloons have been popped and removed, slide the bowls back into the fridge while you get your fillings ready. My brother and I chose to use chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream (my favourite) and blackberries. I also crumbled up a failed bowl to create a chocolate topping (the sides were too thin and uneven – I should have melted more chocolate) and used up the excess melted chocolate by drizzling funky designs onto a piece of parchment paper and stuck it in the fridge.
Step ten: Assemble your bowls and enjoy!
They turned out pretty nifty, didn’t they? Although the edges aren’t even and smooth, I like that it sort of gives them an artisan look.
You can really use any kind of chocolate or candy melt to make these bowls. The next time we try this, we may use Reese’s peanut butter chips. Yum!
Have you ever tried making anything like this? If you do end up following my Step-By-Steps, let me know how they turn out! I’d love to hear all about it.