December 29 2019
Makes about 40
Total Time: 2 hours
8 ounces bittersweet (not unsweetened) or semisweet chocolate, chopped
40 assorted sizes of camellia leaves or lemon leaves, wiped clean
Gold dust* (optional)
Line large baking sheet with foil. Melt chocolate in top of double boiler over simmering water, stirring until smooth and instant-read thermometer inserted into chocolate registers 115°F. Brush chocolate over veined side (underside) of 1 leaf, coating thickly and completely. (See Chef’s Note) Arrange chocolate side up on prepared baking sheet. Repeat with remaining leaves and chocolate, rewarming chocolate if necessary to maintain 115°F temperature.
Chill leaves until firm, about 45 minutes. Starting at stem end, carefully pull back green leaf, releasing chocolate leaf; return leaves to same baking sheet. (Can be made 2 days ahead. Cover and keep chilled.) Using small artist brush, carefully brush some leaves with gold dust, if desired.
Chef’s Note: It’s important to coat the leaves thickly, especially at the stem and along the middle vein. I coated them once, then went back and coated them again near the stem and middle, and then I coated them a third time overall. This was all done while the chocolate was soft and melted.
Try not to get any chocolate on the underside of the leaf as it will make it more difficult to peel off.
I coated each leaf on a cutting board, and then moved it to the baking sheet.