Monday, November 28, 2011

Experiments in Dipping Toffee

For all the toffee and candy dipping I've done, I've never really looked at how to temper chocolate. I melt; I dip.  Last week, I was leafing through one of my chocolate cookbooks and read through the instructions for tempering chocolate.  I thought I'd give it a try.

The various stages of toffee dipping
I got mixed results.  It took a bit of time and patience to go through the steps (at least according to this cookbook) of tempering the chocolate.  I dipped at a lower temperature than I have before.  This made the dipping go so much faster and easier.  I was amazed by the lack of puddling under the toffee.

The drawback?  I didn't temper it right.  I got faint blooming on almost every piece, which is more than what I usually get.  On the other hand, it's so consistent, it almost looks like it was on purpose.  I was a bit timid about trying this, so I worked in a few small batches.  I followed the heating temperatures precisely, but didn't test properly.  Given what I've now been reading, I might have had better luck if I had melted my chocolate in one big batch.  So now I got something things to try for the next batch of toffee or the Easter candy making event I have each spring.  I would love to make a batch of butter creams or peanut butter eggs that don't end up with a puddle of chocolate underneath them.

Ginger Stars and dipped toffee
Since I was in the experimenting mood, I decided to cover a third of the toffee in milk chocolate.  It melted and tempered a few degrees lower than the semi-sweet chocolate (and it also bloomed).  I liked working with the semi-sweet chocolate better than the milk chocolate, but I guess I'll need to ask people which tastes better.

Almond Buttercrunch is dipped; Ginger Stars are baked and iced.  All that's left to do is bag 'em and tag 'em (and give them away).

2 comments :

  1. I've always wanted to try making toffee! Is it hard? They look delicious!

    ReplyDelete
  2. The original recipe is pretty straightforward. What I do now is a bit different (especially in dipping the toffee). This is the recipe that was given to me:

    Almond Buttercrunch
    1½ cups butter
    2 cups sugar
    1 cup sliced raw almonds
    1½ cups chocolate chips
    ½ cup finely chopped pecans

    Melt butter over *very low heat* in heavy saucepan; DO NOT LET BOIL. Add sugar. Boil over medium heat, stirring frequently until candy thermometer reads 260°. Add almonds and continue to cook, stirring constantly (mixture will be thick).

    When at 295-305°, pour into jelly roll pan (11x17”), spreading the candy thin with the back of a metal spoon. Work quickly. Sprinkle chocolate chips, let stand 5 minutes, then spread. Sprinkle with pecans.

    Allow to harden several hours or overnight. Break into pieces.

    ReplyDelete

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