This weekend Lara made her own chocolate bar with an Easter theme using a fun chocolate picture maker kit from Zimpli Kids. While Lara's first ever attempt at drawing chocolate art using molten chocolate may not be as precise and well-refined as the examples on the Zimpli Kids website (and the amazing Elsa picture below), I was quite genuinely impressed by Lara's handiwork and we all enjoyed eating it!
The Zimpli Kids chocolate picture maker kit includes a rectangular plastic mould in which to create your chocolate bar, a set of sample templates to trace over and some packs of white, dark and milk chocolate from which to create your masterpiece. You melt the chocolate in warm tap water and then make a small snip in the sachet from which you squeeze the chocolate. The chocolate is gluten-free and veggie-friendly.
The chocolate sachets contain real belgian chocolate and the end result is properly yummy (unlike some kids chocolate gifts we've tried before!). I mean, properly yummy. The small chocolate maker kit comes with a small bag of dark chocolate for drawing outlines, a small bag of white chocolate for filling in your picture and a larger bag of milk chocolate for the background. We found that there wasn't quite enough milk chocolate to be able to adequately fill in the picture so that it made a nice thick bar - Lara had to be quite sparing with the chocolate and spread it thinly if she were to get the full picture filled in.
The kit is suitable for children from about 4 years upwards. Really, the only limiting factor is the ability to draw.. with chocolate. This is easier said than done. It took Lara quite a while to gain confidence with the chocolate and I think we also cut too big a hole in the sachet for her to draw accurately. We will learn though! We also learned to be patient; Lara wanted to eat her creation as soon as possible but it wouldn't come out of the mould. We had to wait out the full 30 minutes of cooling time and then it easily pushed out of the mould. Within seconds of taking the photos, the chocolate had been devoured.
Lara chose a simple Easter egg design for her first attempt at chocolate pictures but some of the stencils provided are far more intricate and will take a fair bit of practice. There is no limit to the creativity you can attempt - all you need is a suitably sized picture that you can trace over. This gives you the opportunity to make any design you like (remembering that any text you write needs to be created in mirror image as you draw with the chocolate). I think that a personalised chocolate picture would make a BRILLIANT Easter gift for friends and family and this is a fun activity that everyone can get involved in.
I certainly can't wait to give it a try myself. It would be nice to know where I could buy replacement sachets of the chocolate that are just as easy to melt and squeeze.