I have fond memories spending many a lunch break popping next door to Hotel Chocolat in Harrogate and coming home with a luxurious chocolate slab. This was around 2008 and thought they were pricey then at around £10-12. Today, they’ll set you back around £16, but they’re still an absolutely stunning gift for all chocolate lovers and extremely convenient if you can splash your cash. I, however, have a lot of relatives I like to treat this time of year but feel the gifts have to be all the same; no one gets treated differently, so can’t warrant buying them.
I’ve made many of my own chocolate slabs but have always been envious of the uneven wonky slabs they have to offer. I have looked and looked for a similar mould and have never found one; I’ve seen Barry from My Virgin Kitchen make one from tinfoil, but it’s ok for a one-time thing and I preferred something more permanent to add to my collection of bake-ware. Then, I asked everyone on the Frugal Homemaking and Living facebook group where I could buy bendy sheet metal for the job – no one could help, apart from one lady who suggested a tin opener on a biscuit tin. Thank you, thank you thank you! It didn’t turn out quite as simple as that but I managed around it and the rest is history!
Making the Mould
Handle with Care!
You will need a rectangular biscuit tin – mine was Tesco one that I’d found in a charity shop which I carefully and slowly cut the bottom off with a stanley knife. Please handle with care; if you’re nervous, then perhaps the tinfoil method mentioned above is best for you. It will take quite some time, but it will pay off in the long run if you want to make more than just one. Once you’ve cut it off, place strips of sellotape over the sharp edges to make it safer to use.
Now pinch and bend the sides to whatever shape you wish your chocolates to be.
How it Works
I will share some recipes that I created below, but the idea is to place the shape on a chopping board that is lined with baking paper, but can easily fit on a shelf in the fridge for it to set. Then pour in 500g of melted chocolate; you could go for stripes, play around the a skewer to make patterns (I’m boring here) or decorate with any of your favourite chocolate or jellied sweets. What needs to be said though is that tin may not be completely flush with your chopping board so you’ll need to find a baking tray to rest on the top, followed with something heavy to evenly distribute the weight and flatten.
- Crunchie Cornflake Slab
400g milk chocolate
A pinch of fine sea salt
2 crunchies, broken up as you wish for the top
- Melt the chocolate in a microwave bowl, checking every 15-20 seconds to prevent burning and stirring often.
- In a mixing bowl, pour in the melted chocolate and mix in the salt and cornflakes, breaking up the cornflakes as much as you can but leave enough for a good crunchy bite.
- Push in the crunchies (you could break them up a little or keep them whole.
- Place in the fridge for one hour or until the chocolate has evenly solidified.
2. Rocky Road Slab
300g milk chocolate
100g white chocolate
Chocolate chip cookies to decorate
Chocolate chip cookie crumbs for dusting (before it sets)
- Melt the chocolate as above and stir in the raisins
- Pour in the mould and push in some whole cookies (I opted for 3) and crumbled one over for dusting.
- Now push in the marhmallows wherever you want and how many you want and leave to set in the fridge for an hour.
3. Festive Fruit & Nut with Snowman Slab
200g plain or dark chocolate
200g milk chocolate (preferably with hazlenuts)
100g mixed dried fruit and nuts
Whi te chocolate buttons to decorate
For the Snowman or other festive shape in the middle:
Any Christmas or festive cookie cutter (make a batch at any one time as sometimes they break if not handled with care.
Fill 5 of them with 300g melted milk chocolate
- First fill your cookie cutters with melted chocolate and leave to set for 1 hour and to remove them, slowly and carefully bend the cutters open but not massacring them. Note: Gingerbread men’s arms have a tendency to break off!
- Melt the rest of the chocolate (method in recipe 1), stir in the fruit and nuts and pour in to the moulds.
- While it’s still melted, push in the white chocolate shape you’ve created in the centre and decorate towards the top of it with white chocolate buttons to look like it’s snowing.
- Set in the fridge for a minimum of 1 hour.
And if you don’t fancy trying the biscuit tin method, then a solid pizza tin (no holes) is also stylish, featuring my Rocky Road design, but I also mixed it up by adding chocolate eclairs, milk chocolate buttons and a Snickers and Mars bars and my final chocolate bars were a mix of milk and white chocolate, creating a festive scene or one full of sweeties for children.
And if you haven’t already signed up to my free email subscription and you love handmade food gifts, then you really must! I do focus on healthy recipes throughout the year, but save my baking urges to the special occasions.
And if you’ve gotten to the bottom of this blog, you are in for an early preview treat as this is tonight’s 6pm video!
Merry Christmas to all of my lovely readers!
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