Friday, March 22, 2013

Easter Bunnies: Tempering Milk Chocolate

Since it's almost Easter we thought it was time to make Easter bunnies at the office using some of the vintage molds from Beth's collection! In order to mold our bunnies we first needed to temper chocolate and thought we'd do a tutorial for all of the home candy makers that want to give it a shot. Tempering gives chocolate that shine you see on store bought candies and a perfect snap when you bite into it. It also results in a higher melting point so the chocolate doesn't melt in your hand. Chocolate that is out of temper has “bloomed” and has white or gray streaks on the surface. This simply means that the cocoa butter has risen to the surface of the chocolate. Bloomed chocolate looks unappealing but has not gone bad, and can be melted down and tempered to get that familiar glossy appearance.

Equipment needed: Double boiler or glass/metal bowl fitted on top of a saucepan, spatula or spoon, chocolate thermometer, chocolate mold and/or fruit (or other foods) for dipping. 

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Sweet Home Chicago

Millions of nickels have flashed across the counter in exchange for these for each of these leading Mars bars.

A few years ago Beth designed and curated an exhibit for the University of Chicago called Sweet Home Chicago  based on the wonderful collection housed in the John Crerar Library. The exhibit reviewed the candy history of Chicago and highlighted many of the sweets that were created and have been manufactured in the city. The popular exhibit has recently become accessible again and can be viewed online at the University of Chicago library website. The new web exhibit covers everything from early ice cream producers to the start of Wrigley and looks at how women found a place in the bourgeoning candy industry. Indulge your sweet tooth and take a look!

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Saveur on White Chocolate and Trifle Recipe

I was going through my piles of magazines the other day and was delighted to read Ben Mims article on White Chocolate in Saveur. I found it online and thought I'd share.

With it's strong caramel notes, I recently used Guittard Chocolate to construct a delicate white chocolate mousse in holiday inspired trifle. See my oh-so easy recipe below.

Dark Chocolate Peppermint Trifle Cups

A holiday twist on a traditional layered English dessert this version is transformed with peppermint candy and served in festive dessert cups. With alternating layers of milk-chocolate pudding and white-chocolate, vanilla bean mousse, this trifle’s heart is a chocolate wine soaked cake. To ease holiday cooking projects, we’ve substituted a hand made cake for bakery purchased. Feel free to make components like pudding and mousse the day before you assemble your cups. Serve with ChocolatRouge cream wine.
Click read more below for the recipe.