Friday, August 13, 2010

Tempering Chocolate



I had no idea the work and expertise involved in hand dipping confections in chocolate. It is a skill that takes time and much practice to develop.  Here we are at Oh! Chocolate in the Madison Park neighborhood learning how to hand temper chocolate. We worked with very high quality warmed chocolate on cool stone, massaging it with our fingers. If one gets it to just the right temperature and consistency before coating the confection, the final product will have that nice little snap when it meets your tooth and retains that dark and dreamy deep chocolaty appearance (as opposed to the chalky cocoa mottled look your old chocolate bunny had when you finally remembered it a few weeks past its prime :-) ). None of our efforts could have made it into the store's lovely packaged offerings. Let's face it, we felt more than a bit like preschoolers finger painting with chocolate, and that's just about what our creations looked like. Tempering chocolate is not so easy as our host's skill made it seem. When we thought we had it just right, we tried dipping this easy fare of Oreos, graham crackers, and strawberry cream wafers.  It would have taken us weeks of constant practice to work up to liquor based creams and the like. Though few of us met with much success this first try, we all came away with an appreciation of the nuances of this skill. And yes, we got to bag our homely creations and fold up those parchments with the left over chocolate to enjoy another day.  Tomorrow, on to the next stop in the tour.


Chuck Pefley said...

I'd spend way too much time licking my fingers! -:)

Tempering is definitely a precision operation and takes the right tools as well as practice. Don't be disheartened. Just enjoy the imperfect results!!

Shell Sherree said...

What a gorgeous thing to do. They showed chocolate being tempered in an Australian Masterchef episode not long ago and I have a whole new appreciation for why hand-made chocolates cost what they do.

Bibi said...

I agree with Chuck. Hope you licked your fingers really well before picking up your camera! :)

bk said...

Oh, great and tasty fun was had, I can see it!

Peter said...

What an activity to do. It is absolutely my fault (dirty mind, Kim, I confess), but it makes me think of Yves Klein who made paintings with women he rolled down the paint. Imagine to roll down in the chocolate with an entire body?

Max said...

вкуснятина! =)