This Easter, I promise not to eggspress myself through bad egg puns. It’s not all it’s cracked up to be. In fact, it’s eggsasperating!
For eggsample, some people try to use words like ‘eggstraordinary’, ‘eggsciting’ or ‘eggstravagant’, but I hate eggsaggerating. Maybe if I were to come out of my shell a bit, I might be able to whip up a couple.
Okay, okay, I’ll stop yolking around and concentrate instead on the eternal eggsistential question: ‘What came first: the chicken or the egg?’
When my favourite food blogger Not Quite Nigella made these last Easter, I immediately made some for all the kiddywinks in our family. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery and all that…
This Easter, I’ve had designs on these eggs again – quite literally. So I tweaked NQN’s version a tad by embellishing the eggshells.
And then I thought to myself, ‘Instead of plain chocolate, why not go all out with the filling as well?’
Think caramel (salted or not), puffed rice, moist coconut flakes (like Bounty), M&Ms, nuts and nougat… Or, for an adult-version, how about chocolate laced with liqueur (Kahlua, Cointreau, Frangelico)? You could even create a marbled effect using dark, white and milk chocolate. The egg is your oyster. 😉
Here’s how I made these Chocolate Filled Easter Eggshells.
To decorate the eggshells:
Craft items like rubber bands, tape, twine, tiny stickers, etc. to embellish the eggs
To fill the eggshells:
600 g good quality cooking chocolate
3 tbsp extra virgin coconut oil
Assortment of fillings like puffed rice, moist coconut, marshmallows, nuts, etc. (optional)
Using a small sharp knife, make a hole at the base of each egg. This hole should be big enough to allow you to fill your eggs with chocolate. See picture.
Using the same knife, disturb the egg yolk inside and drain out the egg completely (omelette, anyone?).
Rinse out the eggshells thoroughly and leave to dry.
It takes me a week or so to collect a dozen eggshells as I just save them as as when we eat eggs for brekkie. Make sure you have a few extra eggshells in case some crack.
To make your egg dyes, choose your colours. Fill bowls/cups/jars with water. The mouths of these containers need to be wide enough for your hand (and egg) to fit in.
Add 1 tbsp of white vinegar to each jar and then enough food colouring to make a dye. White eggshells need only a few drops for pretty pastels, whereas brown ones need a stronger colour.
If you are using embellishments like stickers, rubber-bands, etc. place them on your eggshells carefully, taking care not to crack them!
Now completely immerse the eggshells in your dyes.
Leave them in the dye for 20-30 minutes. Drain out. Remove the bands, stickers, etc. and admire your handiwork. 😉
Leave to dry overnight by placing them in your egg cartons, hole-side facing down.
The next day, make your chocolate filling.
Melt good quality cooking chocolate on very low heat. Instead of the proper double-boil method, I put the chocolate in a Pyrex measure cup and set this in a simmering pot of water.
Stir constantly, and when the chocolate is almost melted, add the coconut oil. It gives the chocolate a yummy coconutty flavour and a velvet-smooth texture.
To fill the eggshells:
Using the Pyrex cup made it super simple for me to pour the melted chocolate into the eggshells.
The other alternative is to pipe the chocolate into the eggshells using a piping bag/ Ziploc bag with a tiny snip.
If you are using fillings like rice puffs, etc. first pour a little bit of melted chocolate into each eggshell and then swirl it around to coat the inside. Set the eggs aside for the chocolate to harden up a bit.
Put bits of your filling (nuts, marshmallows, rice crisps) and then top up with more chocolate until the eggshell is full.
Tap lightly to release any air pockets.
Leave to set in a cool, dry place, this time, hole-side facing up.
Have a cracking Easter!!
What are your plans for Easter this year – egg hunts, church, fish feasts, family times? Did you ever believe in the Easter Bunny? What concoction can you conjure up to fill your Easter eggs?