Today is a Chocolate-Covered Cherry Day
Just in case you haven’t indulged enough over the festive and new year periods, Chocolate Covered Cherry Day is an excuse to break open another box of cherry liqueurs and dig right in! The idea behind chocolate-covered cherries is incredible simple: chocolate is delicious. So are cherries. So one day someone said, “Why not combine the two and make something even better?” and the chocolate-covered cherry was born!
The History of Chocolate-Covered Cherry Day
Chocolate covered cherries were introduced to the world by Cella’s Confections in New York in 1929 and were an immediate hit, quickly becoming famous the world over. Years later, in 1985, Cella’s Confections was bought from the Masarik Family by Tootsie Roll, though the family is still part owners of the product. Today, almost 90 years after they were made for the first time, Cella’s chocolate covered cherries are famous the world over for their liquid center and extra gooey taste.
How to Celebrate Chocolate-Covered Cherry Day
The best way to celebrate Chocolate-Covered Cherry Day is, of course, to make your own chocolate-covered cherries. Over the years since the first chocolate-covered cherries appeared at Cella’s, there have been tens if not hundreds of recipes for the sweet, each just a little different, but each unique.
The recipe we’ve decided to provide is a bit of a twist on the original idea, because we’re adding one more ingredient to the mix: marzipan. And we’re going to tell you how to make the marzipan, too! And to those of you who may be saying, “It was supposed to be a recipe for chocolate-covered cherries!”, we say: let’s be honest, nothing in this world has ever been made worse by adding marzipan to it!
Chocolate-Covered Marzipan Cherries:
12 glace cherries
2 tablespoons rum (or brandy)
100 grams dark chocolate
250 grams marzipan
1/2 pound blanched almonds, coarsely chopped
1 large egg white at room temperature
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoons vanilla
1 teaspoon strong almond extract
1-1/2 cups confectioners’ (powdered) sugar
Make the marzipan first. If you don’t have a food processor, use an electric coffee grinder and grind the blanched almonds in small batches down into a fine powder, and then put the powder into a large mixing bowl. In a different bowl, whisk the egg white with the salt until it is frothy, and then whisk in the vanilla and almond extracts. Stir the mixture into the almond powder. Sift in the confectioners’ sugar (1/2 cup at a time), constantly kneading the mixture together in the bowl, until you have a smooth, pliable dough. and that’s it: that’s your marzipan paste, ready for further use! You can keep it in a cool refrigerated environment for up to 8 weeks.
Now, line a baking tray with a sheet of baking paper. Take the cherries, cut them in half and place them in a small bowl. Add the rum or brandy and stir well. Then, leave the cherries to soak up the alcohol for at least an hour, stirring every now and then. I the meantime, you can divide your marzipan paste into 24 pieces and roll each piece into a ball. Press half of a cherry cherry into the top of each marzipan ball and roll to get the cherry inside.
Break the chocolate into pieces, place in a bowl and set over a saucepan, stirring until it has melted. Using a cocktail stick, dipe each marzipan ball in the chocolate, covering it completely and allowing the excess to drip back into the bowl. Lastly, put the coated cherries on the baking paper and chill until the chocolate hardens.
Enjoy Chocolate-Covered Cherry Day!