White Chocolate Christmas Tree

This delicious and decorative holiday confection demonstrates the key to cooking with white chocolate: adding in a touch of water helps it keep its shape after cooling. This recipe first appeared in our December 2012 issue along with Maria Pottage's story White Christmas.

What You Will Need

White Chocolate Christmas Tree
This delicious and decorative holiday confection demonstrates the key to cooking with white chocolate: adding in a touch of water helps it keep its shape after cooling.
Yield: makes 1 TREE

Ingredients

  • 2 12 lb. white chocolate (at least 20 percent cocoa butter), chopped
  • 10-20 drops green food coloring
  • 10-20 drops red food coloring

Instructions

  1. Using a pencil and 4½", 3½", 3", 2½", and 1¾" round cookie cutters, trace two circles of each size on three parchment paper—lined baking sheets, leaving at least 2" of room around each circle; set aside. On another parchment paper—lined baking sheet, place both the 4½" and 2¼" rings; set aside.
  2. Place 2 lb. chocolate in a bowl set over a saucepan of barely simmering water, and stir constantly until melted, 6-8 minutes. Remove from heat, stir in 1½-2 tsp. water; set aside for 20-25 minutes to thicken. Fill the 4½" and 2¼" cookie cutters with ¼ cup chocolate each; tap baking sheet to settle. Chill until set. Transfer remaining chocolate to a piping bag fitted with a ⅜" star tip, and using the pencil markings as your guide, pipe 1"-long "leaves" radiating from the circumference of each circle. Pipe an "x" inside each of the four largest circles to provide them with greater stability. Pipe two free-form leaves on one of the baking sheets; refrigerate baking sheets until the chocolate sets, 25-30 minutes.
  3. Melt remaining chocolate in a bowl set over a saucepan of barely simmering water. Let cool slightly, and divide between two small bowls. Stir ½ tsp. water into one bowl; transfer to a small resealable plastic bag. Snip a small hole in corner of bag. Set both bag and bowl of chocolate aside.
  4. Remove baking sheets from refrigerator. Unmold cookie cutters and, using bag of chocolate, pipe a small ring on top of the 2¼" circle. Place the 4½" circle on top of smaller circle to make a pedestal. Pipe a ring of chocolate around top edge of pedestal; place one of the largest circles of leaves on top. Continue this process, stacking circles of leaves, from largest to smallest to make a tree. Glue the two free-form leaves together with a drop of chocolate; secure them standing up on top of smallest circle to make a pointed treetop.
  5. Divide remaining chocolate between 2 bowls; stir red food coloring into one and green into the other. Transfer each to a small resealable plastic bag, and snip a small hole in one corner of each bag. Pipe dots and strings around tree to make Christmas decorations. Chill until set, about 1 hour.
white chocolate christmas tree
White Chocolate Christmas Tree
This delicious and decorative holiday confection demonstrates the key to cooking with white chocolate: adding in a touch of water helps it keep its shape after cooling. See the recipe for White Chocolate Christmas Tree »Todd Coleman