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15 Aug August 15, 2015

Tempering Chocolate, Step by Step VIDEO

TEMPERED CHOCOLATE  is the first step in creating mouth watering gourmet chocolate confections.

When coating rolling or dipping fine chocolates TEMPERED chocolate is required.There is no substitute for the taste and texture of REAL chocolate, premium couverture.  When using REAL chocolate in candy making the process of tempering is often required. What is tempering?

Tempering is the process of heating then cooling chocolate for use in dipping, coating or molding. Tempered chocolate will set quickly and will have a beautiful glossy, rich shine. Once set, tempered chocolate will harden to a nice snap when broken. When chocolate is melted and not tempered it will take a long time to set and will have streaks, feel grainy and never set to a really hard stage.  Of course melting chocolate is required when molding, coating and dipping confections so mastering the technique of tempering is also required when working with REAL chocolate.

Master this technique and you are well on your way to amazing candy creations.  Begin with the finest ingredients and a few special techniques and the confectionary world is yours!

TOOLS

Microwave safe bowl/container– Hard plastic or soft plastic. (Rubbermaid type or the equivalent)
-Test bowl to insure is doesn’t retain heat: Put 1 cup water in bowl, microwave until water is steaming. Remove bowl. If the bowl is not too hot to hold, it is good.
Food Thermometer: Digital thermometers are great but cost about $35.00. A basic candy thermometer costs approx $15.00 and works very well. You will need it for other candy projects as well.
Rubber spatula: Use a soft rubber spatula for stirring and blending chocolate. It is much better than wood or metal for scraping the sides of your bowl.
Microwave with variable settings. ( a turning tray is helpful too)
PREMIUM CHOCOLATE- 1 ½ pounds of premium, REAL chocolate divided into two separate bowls: 1 pound for the melting batch and ½ pound as the seeding chocolate.

PROCESS

Make sure your chocolate is in uniform size chunks. This helps them melt evenly. If you have very large chunks and itty bitty chunks, you risk burning parts of your batch.

Put your one pound master batch in the microwave (using the heat tested bowl) for ONE minute. Remove, stir completely and return to microwave. Repeat this process until all the chunks have completely melted and your batch temperature is approx 116  degrees. Caution, do not assume your chocolate is not melting if you still see chunks. It is heating from the inside out. Take your time and stir thoroughly. It is very important that you heat your chocolate in short spurts. Don’t risk burning your chocolate from the inside out by microwaving too long. Slow and steady, stir as you go, will insure your chocolate is evenly heated and totally melted without overheating. Remember… we are trying to “melt” the chocolate, not “cook” it.

Once your master batch has reached a temperature of approximately 116 degrees (MAX) add ¼ pound of chocolate chunks, (seed chocolate).

Stir master batch until all seed chocolate chunks have melted. Test the temperature and watch it drop. As the seed chocolate melts, the master batch cools down. Adding the seed chocolate (chocolate that is still in temper) adds good, tempered chocolate crystals to your batch and helps your entire batch go into temper.
Continue this process until your master batch has reached 86-88 degrees. Keep in mind, stirring your batch thoroughly, all sides and bottom of your bowl, while the temperature drops, helps your chocolate go into perfect temper.

Once your entire batch has reached the 88 degree mark, do a small test. Place a spoonful on wax paper, pop it into the refrigerator for10 minutes. Once hardened, it should be shiny, and break with a nice “snap” Presto, you have a perfectly tempered master batch ready to use!

After you have done a few batches using this method you will have a good feel for how your microwave works with chocolate. Here is a guideline about heat and chocolate behavior. Please note we are referring to REAL chocolate in this table.
White chocolate: Melts quickest and burns the fastest. It contains a lot of milk solids which are quick to burn if not stirred thoroughly. Stir, stir, stir. Use moderate setting.
Milk chocolate: Melts quickly and evenly. Use moderate to high heat settings.
Dark or semi sweet chocolate. Very dense, fewer milk solids. Slowest to melt and harder to burn. Can tolerate higher heat settings. Make no mistake… it too will burn if not stirred!

Once this small batch technique is mastered, you will be doing 2-5 pound chocolate batches in no time!
Don’t lose your temper or your “cool”. Take your time to master this process and have fun!

For questions, advice or help, please contact us: Lynn@Gourmetcandymaker.com

The Gourmet Candy Maker is dedicated to teaching and promoting the art and craft of gourmet candy making.

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22 thoughts on “Tempering Chocolate, Step by Step VIDEO

  1. allison says:

    i would like to know which is the best tempering machine for a home based business and about how many pounds of chocolate can be used to make truffles or shells for fillings

  2. Hazel says:

    Thank you for the lesson on tempering milk chocolate in the microwave oven. What are the temperatures used for tempering white chocolate and dark chocolate using the same microwave method. Big thanks!

  3. Lynn says:

    Hi Hazel,
    Use high heat for all chocolate but reduce heating cycle time. For 1 pound of white chocolate start with 30 seconds, stir, then return for another 30 seconds repeat until all chocolate is melted. Be VERY careful and “mash” the lumps in white chocolate each time you stir. They can fool you. You may think they are still unmelted when in fact they have gone past the melting state and are beginning to harden (thanks to the milk solids) White chocolate is the most sensitive flavor and burring it is easy to do…
    Dark chocolate is the easiest and can withstand high heat. Milk chocolate is right in the middle. BEST PRACTICE: Until you have mastered the various times using your microwave, go slow, in short spurts… with this method you will find the perfect formula and gain total confidence :0 Thanks for asking. Happy candy making..

  4. Lynn says:

    Hi there,
    THIS is a fantastic tempering machine and will temper 10# of chocolate per hour. We have THREE and during the holidays they are in full use for more than three weeks.
    http://www.chocolatetemperingmachines.com/products/chocovision-revolation-delta
    The nice part is, you will increase your productivity and work flow with a continuous supply of perfectly tempered chocolate. It takes a bit of organization but once you have the work flow down…you can really produce volumes of confections.
    If this machine is too expensive, look on E-bay or Craigslist. There are also smaller versions on the market but THIS one is awesome…
    Thanks for your questions and comments. GOOD LUCK- please share your progress and what you are doing 🙂

  5. Kristin Zaharias says:

    Are there adjustments that should be made for high altitude? I’m at 4600 feet above sea level.

  6. Lynn says:

    No adjustments for high altitude. My chocolate store was located in Denver Colorado and never had a concern. Thanks for asking… Enjoy

  7. Mary Freehling says:

    Lynn I enjoyed your directions on tempering candy .thank you not everyone wants to share I have been makeing candy for forty five years best directions yet I use about one hundred pounds a Holiday.I am 80years old and still playing can’t wait to see your next video.Mary

  8. Terri B says:

    Hi Lynn, I’m new to candy making. I’m making my own sugar free dark chocolate bars adding my favorite type of natural sweetener. The chocolate looks nice and shiny when it first cools. After sitting a while it develops a chalky color, especially on the bottom. Then gets dull overnight. Is this from not tempering? I used a double boiler to melt the chocolate and cocoa butter. Thanks!

  9. Lynn says:

    Absolutely! Using real chocolate requires tempering. How great that you are making your OWN blend of chocolate. Can you give us the steps you took, where you found the raw ingredients etc? Thanks for reaching out to us… Enjoy

  10. Lynn says:

    You are FANTASTIC! Thank you so much for sharing Mary! My Mom has been involved in my candy making business from the beginning. She too is in her 80’s and loves sampling things I make as well as helping in the kitchen. 100 pounds during the holiday.. BOY do I relate! Enjoy Mary and THANK YOU so much for reaching out and sharing. Send us some pictures 🙂

  11. Lynn says:

    I personally use HIGH heat setting on my microwave BUT…White chocolate burns from the inside out. Start at medium heat with short durations. You can always heat more but once it is burned… it’s done! Dark chocolate is much more tolerant. I suggest starting slowly until you have a good feel for your microwave and the process. Thanks for asking.

  12. Lynn says:

    Check this system out. http://www.chocolatetemperingmachines.com/products/chocovision-revolation-delta They have various sizes and do well for a home based business. I believe the larger model will temper 10-12 pounds in less than 30 minutes. Enjoy.

  13. Rae Sandberg says:

    Hi Lynn,
    I was wanting to ask if you can mix dark chocolate ( Scharffen Berger ) and Milk chocolate from King Arthur Flour when tempering? I have fallen in love with chocolate dipped pretzels.

  14. Lynn Hawks says:

    Mix and Match to your hearts delight. Find a flavor combo you love and enjoy.

  15. Sandy says:

    I am a newbie, and need to temper some chocolate to coat truffles. Do you have an approximate idea of how many truffles you could coat with this particular recipe?

  16. Lynn Hawks says:

    Hi there,
    You can easily coat approx. 30-48 truffles with 1 1 1/2 pounds of tempered chocolate. You will have some left over, perfect for dipping a few roasted almonds, walnuts or pecans. Keep in mind it is easier to temper a larger batch of chocolate (more than 1 pound) 2 pounds is ideal as the temperature holds longer.But with a little practice you will be able to temper 16 ounces with no problem at all… Enjoy. Send us photos of your confections 🙂

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