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Video:How to Temper Chocolate

with Gretchen Siegchrist

Tempered chocolate has a glossy finish, which looks great on homemade candies or chocolate-covered strawberries. Find out how to properly temper chocolate.See Transcript

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Transcript:How to Temper Chocolate

Hi, I am Gretchen Siegchrist for About.com Food, and I am going to show you the proper method for tempering chocolate.

Tempering is a way of melting chocolate so that it has that nice, glossy finish that you see on professionally made candies.

Ingredients Needed to Temper Chocolate

You will need:
  • at least 1 pound of high-quality chocolate
  • a sharp knife for cutting the chocolate
  • a rubber spatula for stirring
  • a double boiler
  • a chocolate thermometer
You need to get a thermometer that is specially made for chocolate because it shows the difference in degrees very clearly in a way that you will not be able to see on a normal candy thermometer.

Cut the Chocolate

Using the knife, begin at the corner of the block of chocolate and cut it into almond-size pieces. Once you have chopped away one corner of the chocolate, turn the block and begin on another corner.

Melt Most of the Chocolate

Fill the bottom of the double boiler with water, and bring it to a simmer on the stove. Add two-thirds of the chocolate pieces to the top of the double boiler, and place this over the simmering water.

Place the thermometer in the top of the double boiler so that you can easily monitor the chocolate's temperature. Stir the chocolate gently with a spatula as it melts.

Add the Remaining Chocolate

When the chocolate reaches the correct temperature--110 degrees for milk or white, 115 for dark--remove it from the heat. Add the remaining chocolate pieces, and stir them in until they melt.

Let the chocolate cool to 84 degrees. Return the chocolate to the top of the double boiler, where the water should still be simmering, and leave it there for five to 10 seconds.

Stir the Melted Chocolate

Now, remove the chocolate from the heat and give it a gentle stir. Repeat the process until the chocolate heats up to 87 degrees for milk or white, or 89 degrees for dark chocolate.

Use the Tempered Chocolate

The chocolate should now be properly tempered. You can test it by spreading a thin layer on a sheet of wax paper.

If the chocolate is shiny and smooth when it hardens, it is properly tempered. If it is dull and streaky, it has not been tempered correctly.

Now you can use your tempered chocolate to make delicious, professional-looking candies. Have fun!

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