Here’s a practical one for you 😉
Making chocolate decorations or filled chocolates are so much fun and gives a much enjoyable result, but only if you temper your chocolate first! Why? Because if you don’t, you won’t get that beautiful sheen, the satisfying snap or the delicious taste + your creations will bloom when kept at room temperature. One may then ask: what’s the point, then?
For this post I tempered 100 g of dark chocolate, but you can make any amount, you want! Chop 2/3 of the chocolate quite roughly and 1/3 into finer pieces. Place the two textures in two different bowls. Make sure your bowls can handle the heat from the hob. A thick glass bowl or a metal one is ideal.
When you temper chocolate, you fist have to melt it. Use a double boiler or a water bath and melt the roughly chopped 2/3 chocolate.
When melting dark chocolate, you want to heat it up to 55oC (130oF), which is why having a digital thermometer is essential when tempering.
When you have reached the right temperature, pour it over the fine chocolate in the second bowl and be careful not to burn your hands! Turn it and melt the fine chocolate with the hot.
I used to keep the chocolate in the same bowl and leave it to cool down… took an hour at least!
This, and doing it in a cold bowl, helps the chocolate to cool down and form crystal types IV and V.
Cool it down to 28-29oC (84oF). t this temperature, the chocolate is agitated to create many small crystal “seeds” which will serve as a nucleus to create small crystals in the chocolate.
The final step is to reheat the chocolate to 31-33oC (88-92oF) to eliminate any type IV crystals, leaving just the type V.
It is very important that the chocolate does not get any excessive heating after this state is reached, as it will destroy the tempering and you’ll have to start over ☹
Once you’re done tempering, go ahead and make filled chocolates or fill the chocolate in a piping bag and make pretty decorations for cakes and other desserts!
I covered a cutting board with a baking sheet. Piping onto this makes it much easier to remove, once it’s cooled.
If you want to stick them into desserts, make a small stem like the ones on the left 🙂
Till next time! 😉