Tempering chocolate is one of the things I have kept putting off; it all seemed rather complicated and difficult. I was determined, however, to try it before the year was out. Not having a sugar thermometer or a microwave, I made a very basic attempt just before Christmas. These chocolates were destined for Christmas presents, so I did looks were fairly important. Luckily, it seemed to work, but whether this was pure fluke, very good chocolate or I actually did the right thing, I do not know. I used Chocolate by Trish 74% for cooks and her 38% milk chocolate – both of which I had used before and was already impressed with.
- Chopped cubes of crystallised ginger into small pieces and placed these at the bottom of 24 small round chocolate moulds.
- Melted 110g dark chocolate (74% buttons used for chestnut brownies) in a pan over near simmering water.
- When melted added a further 40g and removed the bowl from the pan.
- Resisted the temptation to stir until these had also melted – then stirred until smooth.
- Spooned enough of this over the ginger to fill the moulds.
- Melted 100g milk chocolate – I had intended to use the same method as for the dark chocolate, but for some reason I couldn’t get it to melt properly. It could be that my kitchen was very cold, because it melted beautifully when I first used it in the lemon balm ganache.
- Spooned the melted (but not tempered) chocolate over the remaining ginger pieces.
- Licked out the bowl of lovely warm chocolate – yum.
Lovely shiny dark chocolates – my first ever and I was very excited. It didn’t work as well for the milk ones, but a partial success was good enough for a first attempt and they all tasted truly delicious. Ginger and chocolate is one of my favourite combinations and proved to be popular with friends and family too. As a milk chocolate lover, these were my favourite, but I would have been quite happy polishing off the lot myself. This year, by hook or by crook, I want to master the art of tempering or at least become adept at it. Any tips you have to offer would be much appreciated.