If you need a super-quick, super-easy treat, you can't get much better than these cute guys. I made these last night for our Sunday treat since I hadn't planned anything, and I had exactly the time it took for my husband to bathe our two youngest girls to pull them together. The animal crackers aren't very sweet, and with the chocolate they reminded me of a chocolate-covered shortbread. I put sprinkles on most of them because, well, kids love sprinkles. These are also great to send in lunchboxes; at least for a few minutes you can be the best parent in the world ;)
Note: This is more of a method than a recipe. You can make as much chocolate as you want, and the number of crackers you need depends on how much you chocolate you put on each cracker--you get the idea.
Chocolate-Dipped Animal Crackers
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 teaspoon vegetable shortening
1. Cover your work surface (counter) with a large sheet of waxed paper.
2. To melt the chocolate, fill a small saucepan with 2 inches of water and bring to a simmer. Put the chocolate chips and shortening in a metal bowl small enough to fit into the pot, and where the top rim of the pot comes about 1/2 way up the side of the bowl. OR you can use a double boiler. I don't have one so I use the pot/bowl combo. It's important that the water doesn't touch the bottom of the bowl. Stir the chocolate chips until they are melted (this takes just a minute or two tops) and then turn off the heat. The hot water in the pot will keep the chocolate melted.
3. Dip each cracker in the chocolate and lay them on the waxed paper. To make dipping easier, I tipped the bowl a little to the side so the chocolate created a nice puddle. Gentle shake each cookie to remove excess chocolate (if there ever is such a thing). Before the chocolate has set, sprinkle with the sprinkles.
And you're done! Like I said, super, super easy.