Sunday, January 4, 2009

About Melting Chocolate

When making truffles, such as the Gingerbread Truffles and the Cream Cheese Truffles I made, you will need to melt chocolate for both the center and the topping. There are two ways to melt chocolate:

  • the microwave
  • the double broiler method.
I prefer the double broiler method when I'm melting a large amout of chocolate.

Don't worry if you don't have a set of pots dedicated to double-broiling. You don't need it! I made this little double broiler out of what I had:

Because the glass bowl was too small for the pot, I made a tinfoil snake (I didn't roll it tightly - you want room for the bowl to mold to it). Just put the snake on the outer rim of the pot. Add about an inch of water to the bottom of the pot.

Then place the bowl on top and, voila!

I also found that I had a Corell bowl that fit perfectly:

Oh! That flame in the picture is too high! I lowered it just after I took the shot.

Note: Chocolate burns easily! Use a low flame and stir often.

Notes on white chocolate: White chocolate takes longer to melt than dark chocolate. If you combine white and dark (as in the gingerbread truffle recipe), be sure to add the white first. I also noticed that white chocolate seems to harden faster when removed from heat.

I did, however, use the microwave to melt the white chocolate that I used to decorate my truffles:

Microwaving White Chocolate
I only use the microwave to melt my chocolate when there is a small amount to be melted. I was trying to melt about 2/3 cup of white chocolate chips. The first time, I let the microwave run for 30 seconds before stirring. BAD IDEA! The chocolate burnt and was unusable.

The second time, I stirred every 10-12 seconds, even before the chocolate really started melting. That worked out perfectly.

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