How Many Pounds Of Chocolate?
How many pounds of chocolate do I need to dip 300 strawberries?
I need to dip 300 strawberries and pretzels each.
I am not sure the amount of time I need to let them set before I package, and I am not sure on how much chocolate I need to purchase.
That's a tough one. The amount of chocolate per piece is going to vary depending on the size of the strawberries and pretzels and how thick you coat them.
The runnier the chocolate, the thinner the coating, of course. If you let the chocolate cool slightly, it will be thicker.
In a situation like yours I would suggest that you get one or two pounds of chocolate and do a test run.
You can figure out how many chocolate covered strawberries and how many chocolate covered pretzels you can make with one pound and then you can just do the math.
Multiply the number you can make per pound until you come up with 300+ and you will know how much you need.
It may seem a bit of a pain to do a trial run, but I'm sure you know some people who would love to be your test guinea pigs and eat up the experiment! :)
As for the other part of your question - how long will it take the chocolate to set before you can package them? Again, that depends on the thickness of the chocolate and the temperature and humidity.
Usually they will set within an hour. To be on the safe side,
I'd give them a little longer just to be sure. You do want the chocolate to be fully set so that it doesn't mar your packaging.
You'll also want to be sure you keep the packaged chocolate covered strawberries and chocolate covered pretzels in a cool place away from strong smells until they are eaten.
The strawberries are probably going to need to be refrigerated if you are planning to save them for more than a day or two. If you are able to make them the day before, you can just leave them at room temperature and they will taste better.
I haven't done it myself yet, but I once read of a method to keep chocolate covered strawberries fresh for longer. I don't know how you will do it with 300, but this is the method. "Before placing them in the container, lay a paper towel down on the bottom of the container, sprinkle a little baking soda and then place the plate of chocolate-covered strawberries on top. Cover and refrigerate. Freshly dipped strawberries should last almost a week with this method."
Don't refrigerate the pretzels if you can avoid it. They shouldn't need it unless it is really warm and they are in danger of melting.
Here's another tip! You can add about a tablespoon or so of shortening to each pound of chocolate when melting and this will help to avoid chocolate "bloom" if you should have to refrigerate your chocolate covered strawberries or pretzels.
Hope your treats come out super delicious!