By: Helena Stallings, Culinary Arts Graduate
For pastry arts students knowing how to temper chocolate is like knowing how to make a roux for culinary arts students. It is a tool that will always come in handy when working in the culinary industry. To start, roughly chop 1 pound of bittersweet chocolate and add 2/3 to a double boiler. When all of the chocolate has melted, remove the bowl from the double boiler and wipe the bottom with a towel to get rid of any condensation. Slowly stir in the remaining 1/3 of the chocolate and allow to cool to around 80 degrees. When all the chocolate has been incorporated, return the bowl to the double boiler and reheat to 91 degrees. Spoon a small amount of the tempered chocolate onto a piece of parchment paper and let cool. If the chocolate has the appearance of being dry or dull, repeat the tempering process. If the chocolate looks glossy, you have successfully tempered chocolate.
Tempering Chocolate Recipe:
1 pound bittersweet chocolate
- Chop all of your chocolate into small pieces. Set aside about 1/3 the amount.
- Heat a saucepan over medium heat until just slightly simmering. Using a stainless steel bowl, place the other 2/3 of chocolate in there and set over the saucepan. The bottom of the bowl should never be touching the water. Continue to stir as the chocolate melts in the bowl and checking the temperature frequently with a thermometer. The temperature should never exceed 120F.
- When the chocolate has fully melted, remove it from the heat. Wipe the bottom of the bowl with a towel to get rid of any condensation. Add the remaining 1/3 of chocolate a little at a time, stirring constantly and letting it melt before adding more.
- When the chocolate has cooled to about 82F, then place it back over the simmering water and reheat it from 88F to 91F.
- Spoon and small amount of chocolate onto some parchment paper and let cool. If the chocolate dries streaky or dull, repeat the second step and re-temper. If it dries glossy, quickly and with no streaks, it’s done!