23rd January 2016
Tempering chocolate is the process of heating and cooling chocolate so you can then use it to shape and mould.
If you’re looking to create your own chocolate shapes and slabs at home, you must temper chocolate! If you try to simply melt and set chocolate you’ll encounter a number of problems… Firstly, the chocolate can ‘bloom’ and white, unappetising patches appear instead of the lovely gloss you probably want to achieve. Secondly, when it cools, you won’t get the lovely snap if you attempt to break it in half and finally, it’ll be really difficult to remove the chocolate from any mould you put it in. A total dairy nightmare.
So tempering is the solution! It’s easy and definitely not something you should be afraid of. Follow this guide and make use of our awesome video, where Ben will show you exactly how it’s done.
Chocolate of course! Different chocolates have different melting and setting points so we’ll tell you what to do depending on your use of white, milk and dark.
A catering thermometer.
A glass bowl.
When you’re tempering chocolate, you’ll need to start with more chocolate than what you’ll actually need at the end. So whatever quantity you need, increase the amount slightly.
Break up ¾ of the chocolate into a bowl and the other ¼ into a fridge.
Melt your chocolate. You have two options here.
Option 1: Place the bowl over a pan of gently simmering water. Ensure the water doesn’t touch the bowl. Stir until melted.
Option 2: Use the microwave and heat the chocolate in 30 second blasts, taking it out in between to stir.
Whichever way you use, you want to get your chocolate to 46°C.
The next step is to lower the temperature of the chocolate from 46°C to 26°C. Again there are a couple of options for you depending on what you have available.
Option 1: The traditional method is to pour it over marble (or any cool, clean, metallic surface) and move it around with a spatula. Once it reaches 26°C spoon it back into the bowl.
Option 2: Take the ¼ of cold chocolate out of the fridge. Chop it up into small pieces and use it to lower the temperature to 26°C by stirring it in bit by bit. This will help you to eventually reach the ideal temperature.
The last step is to bring the temperature of the chocolate back up. Using the same methods that you used to melt the chocolate, heat it up.
Depending on the type of chocolate, these are the temperatures you need to achieve:
Be very careful at this stage! If you go over your final temperature goal, you will have to bring the chocolate back down to 26°C by going back to step 3.
Use moulds or simple tricks to shape your chocolate however you like. If you’re a beginner why not give our chocolate slabs recipe a go?
Once this is done, you shouldn’t even need to put the chocolate in the fridge. It should set at room temperature (unless you’re in a very hot country.)
Decent! You’ve successfully tempered chocolate. If you have any questions along the way that you need answering, get in touch on Facebook or Twitter. Check out our other awesome chocolate recipes now you’re in the mood.
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