About two months ago, I was sitting in a waiting room flipping through a magazine when I came across a recipe for a healthy snack: dark chocolate-dipped clementine segments sprinkled with sea salt. Since my family fought off a nasty stomach bug last week (that’s why I didn’t post anything), I decided that healthy and super simple was the way to go for this week’s recipe.
I don’t have the original recipe, but there wasn’t much to remember anyway: clementines, chocolate chips, sea salt. I have to say, the snack boasts a number of benefits beyond the obvious simplicity and dose of vitamin C. First, you make as much or as little as you want. I had about 5 ounces of chocolate chips left over from a recipe for holiday fudge, so I only peeled two clementines; that was just about a perfect amount of chocolate for the citrus segments. Second, you can easily personalize the treats. I used milk chocolate chips, but semi-sweet would be great, too. I also didn’t sprinkle on any sea salt because I’m watching my sodium right now. If you’re looking for something fancy, drizzle melted white chocolate over the slices, add sprinkles, or dip in crushed pecans… the sky’s the limit. Third, these work great as a snack, but are also a great filler for holiday cookie trays.
Here’s how I made this snazzy snack:
Clementines (estimate 2 per 5-6 ounces of chocolate chips)
Vegetable oil (helps chocolate to melt smoothly; ¼ to ½ teaspoon per 6 ounces of chocolate is plenty)
Sea salt (optional)
Line a plate or baking sheet with parchment paper. Peel clementines and separate into segments. Try to avoid getting too much juice on the outside of the segments; otherwise, the chocolate slides off the segments.
Use a microwave and microwave-safe bowl to melt the chocolate chips at medium power (50-60%) in 30 second intervals. Stir after each interval. Once the chocolate is smooth, dredge the segments (rather than dip) in the chocolate to get it to stick to the clementines. Place onto the parchment paper. When finished, put plate in the fridge for at least 10 minutes to allow the chocolate to set.
Eat cold and within a few hours; the uncovered area of the clementine segments will dry out pretty quickly.
Let me just say: WOW! Cold, juicy sweetness explodes when you bite through the chocolate shell. I really loved this treat. In terms of texture, it reminds me of chocolate-covered cherries and those chocolate-covered fruit jellies. The flavor is reminiscent of the solid chocolate oranges you find at this time of year – except it’s not at all artificial. My son just sucked the chocolate off his clementine segments, so the combination of textures and flavors didn’t appeal to him. I’m not too upset by this, though. More chocolate-dipped clementines for me!