“ Brand: Dr Oetker / Type: Baking Aids „
I buy these every year to make with my kids, i have had no problems with them at all, i make them up( Boil in a saucepan method) and either use them as tree decorations or tie them on my Christmas presents, i don't understand why the other reviewer found them so difficult!I always put them in the fridge to cool off first and then decorate them, makes it easier, i am making a batch for my Daughter to sell at her school's Christmas fete.
Dr Oetker's Christmas Tree Decoration kit
This is what the website says about this pack:
"The perfect way to decorate your Christmas tree is with your own hand-made Christmas Tree Decorations.
Our festive kit is easy to follow and contains everything you need including milk chocolate flavour drops for melting, festive shapes mould and red Writing Icing to decorate and cellophane bags and tie to display.
Adult supervision required.
Each kit contains everything you need to make and decorate 18 tree decorations."
It has the warning - Allergy Advice - Contains Gluten, Milk & Soya
My Kit is a Supercooks one but apparently that is the same company as Dr Oetkers. The kit I bought to make with my grandsons when I was babysitting one afternoon. Fortunately I looked at the instructions more closely before Istarted to make these with them as really it would have been a disaster.
What do you get in the fancy box?
The box is colourful and has drawing on the front but no photos of these decorations.. On the reverse are more detailed instructions and a warning notice stuck on as an afterthought stating
" WARNING: Chocolate may become very hot! Take care with chocolate after heating"
Inside the box is a plastic mould with 9 different shapes, two squeezy tubes of edible coloured gel ( red and green), a plastic bag full of edible silver balls, a bag of white 'chocolate' buttons and a bag of 'milk chocolate'buttons. There were two packs of cellophane bages and a number of silver wire ties
That sounds quite simple what is the problem?
Firstly the instructions give you two ways of melting the so called chocolate. Either in the microwave and here you are told to place the buttons still in the bag on the microwave plate for 0 seconds, test them and then do this again. The alternative was to put the buttons in the bag in very hot water not boiling water until melted.
Sounds okay I hear you say, so I tried the microwave method first. The white chocolate turned into oil and lumps so that went straight in the bin.
The milk chocolate buttons I put in the hot water in the jug. Waited ages and they were still not melted. I added more hot water and they did melt.
Next stage, cut off the corner of the bag and pour the chocolate into the moulds. I cut off the corner and tried to pour out the melted chocolate but it sort of lumped out.
Finally I managed to get some chocolate into each shape and put it in the fridge to harden. By this time I was fed up with the kit as it was so fiddly for something that should really be so simple. If the chocolate had been quality chocolate instead of cheap rubbish then it would have melted properly. I melt chocolate frequently for deserts and sweets and have NEVER had this much fuss and failure.
So what about decorating these?
Once they were hardened I pushed them out of their moulds and they did come out very easily so that was a positive. Squeezing the sweet coloured gel out of the tubes was quite tricky and I would doubt a child could do it and certainly not with any accuracy. The shapes in the mould were quite intricate and would have taken quite some artist tic talent to create much with two gel colours and silver ball but after I had finished they looked okay but certainly were not amazing.
How did you hang these bits of chocolate on the tree?
Well you have to put these into tiny cellophane bags provided and that itself was harder than you think and far beyond a small child's capabilities as the bag kept closing as you tried to get the decorated item into it. After you got finally get it in the clear cellophane bag you then tie it with a silver covered wire wrap tie thing. This is then hung on your tree.
What did I think?
A total waste of money. I can't remember how much I paid but think it was about £2 and for the amount of effort this required I could have bought ready made cheap chocolate decorations for less. They were not fun to make as nothing worked properly and they were far too dangerous and fiddly for children to make even with adult supervision. You would be far better to buy coloured gel tubes and give them home made or shop bought plain biscuits to decorate. As a child would attempt to decorate these the chocolate would have melted and the gel was too hard for them to get out easily.
I can think of many more easy to do with children activities that I have done with entire classes of children. I certainly would not do these even with just one child 'helping'.
I have kept the moulds and will use them again with decent quality chocolate but I won't bother trying to decorate them as really they were far too fiddly to be worth doing and the end result was average to say the least.
My advice is steer clear and do something else with children instead. Only one star for the chocolate mould that I have left and the fact I have to give it one!
Thanks for reading. This review may be posted on other sites under my same user name.