All About Chocolate - Cooking Tips

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Title: All About Chocolate - Cooking Tips
Yield: 1 Servings
Categories: Chocolate



Chocolate scorches easily, so always melt it over hot - not boiling -
water. It is best to use a double boiler, but you can improvise by using a
c or bowl in a small saucepan over very gentle heat. The water must be
kept below simmering to prevent steam from curling up and hitting the
chocolate. If steam gets into the melted chocolate it will immediately
thicken the mixture to a stiff mass. If this does happen, however, you can
rescue the chocolate by softening it again. To do this, add 1-2 tb of
vegetable shortening (never use butter as it contains moisture which will
cause the chocolate stiffen even more!) to the chocolate and stir
vigorously. You can also melt chocolate directly over very low heat in a
heavy gauge saucepan, but you must watch the mixture carefully.


Use a vegetable peeler with a long narrow blade and a chunk or bar of
chocolate. Warm chocolate and blade slightly. Be sure your peeler is
absolutely dry. Draw the peeler along the smooth surface of the chocolate.


Be sure that the block of chocolate is cool and firm. Grate on hand
grater, cleaning the grater often so that the chocolate doesn't clog the
surface of the blade. You cn use a blender, but be sure to cut the
chocolate into sm pieces first.


Chocolate should be stored in a cool, dry place at a temperature of about
60F. If the chocolate becomes too warm, the cocoa butter rises to the
surface and forms a dusty gray film known as "bloom." This "bloom" is not
harmful and, once the chocolate is melted, it returns to its natural rich
brown color. If you do store chocolate in the refrigerator or freezer,
take in out and let it stand until it returns to room temperature before
you use it in a recipe. Chocolate is very sensitive to sudden changes of
temperature and you will not get the best results if you do not treat it
with respect.

Origin: Farm Journal's Choice Chocolate Recipes Posted in COOKING by:
Sharon Stevens 8/10/93

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