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How to Temper Chocolate for Making Candy

Part of the Candy Making For Dummies Cheat Sheet

If you’re making candy, chocolate is pretty much a staple ingredient. It’s often the finishing coat for a collection of other sweet treats that you dip into it. The process for getting chocolate to the proper consistency for dipping is called tempering, and the following steps show you how to temper chocolate by hand:

  1. Place a block of chocolate on a cutting board and, using a heavy knife, shave it into small pieces.

    Each piece of chocolate should be the size of a fingernail. Place the chopped chocolate in a bowl.

  2. Microwave or use a double boiler to melt the chopped chocolate to at least 110 degrees.

    Using a chocolate thermometer, check the temperature of the chocolate; its temperature should never exceed 120 degrees.

  3. Pour 2/3 of the melted chocolate onto a marble slab and work the chocolate back and forth using an offset spatula and a trowel (like a sheetrock tool) until the chocolate reaches 82 degrees on a chocolate thermometer (84 degrees for dark chocolate).

    The chocolate becomes thicker as it cools.

  4. Add the chocolate from the slab into the chocolate in the bowl and stir the two together.

    The chocolate should now be in temper.

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