How to Temper Chocolate – the easy way

December 16, 2012 · 36 comments in 'How to's

 

I saw this method of tempering chocolate on the food network, from Alton Brown - that man is pure genius – and wanted to try it out

Whenever I want to coat things/ dip things into chocolate (more than just a drizzle), then I’m always faced with the idea of having to temper the chocolate.

Normally, I wouldn’t really care if there was a little bloom on the chocolate, but when you’re a food blogger, you feel the pressures: you can’t have grainy, bloomed chocolate all over those cookie right!? Does anybody else feel judged for having un-tempered chocolate? nope? just me? Alrighty then.

Anywho, I tried this method out for an upcoming recipe, and thought I’d create a step by step guide with pictures (no .gifs this time – seeing a food processor blending through the tiny chute in the lid isn’t the most informative thing , as I discovered while making this post…). It worked quite well – it wasn’t as annoying as having to heat chocolate to different temperatures and cool it and keep checking the temperature and crying in the corner when you find all your effort was wasted; and it worked pretty well -

I had a butter knife with some of the tempered chocolate on it, sitting on the counter and my friend wanted to  - what else – eat the chocolate off the knife. She picked it up and when she tried to lick the chocolate (which she thought was still melted because it was SO DANG SHINY), I just heard her say:

“Woah, mindfuck, it looks like it’s still melted, but it seriously isn’t”

Yup, that’s how I judge how well this worked. Such is my life.

Update: I’ve posted the recipe where I used this method of tempering the chocolate  - it’s so shiny! :O

Creds to Alton Brown for this method – (I tweaked it a little)

You will be needing:

- at least 7 oz of chopped chocolate, or chocolate chips or chocolate chunks – semi-sweet / bittersweet works best ( I used half semisweet chocolate chips and half 70% chopped chocolate)
- a food processor
- a thermometer (you only need to use it once)

 

Put the chocolate into the food processor  Blend until you get a mixture that resembles fine bread crumbs.

how to temper chocolate - the easy way

Scrape down the sides and bottom of the food processor (I utilized a spatula for the sides, and the end of a spoon for the bottom)

Blend again for 1 minute.

Scrape down the sides and bottom of the food processor.

Blend until the chocolate clumps up into a ball – break it up using your hands.

 

Blend again until you get a thick, ganache like texture. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the food processor.

How to Temper Chocolate - the easy way

 

How to Temper Chocolate - the easy way

 

(ooh so swirly)

Blend until you get smooth, fluid chocolatey goodness. Test the temperature – you want it to be at 90 degrees F – if it isn’t then:

How to Temper Chocolate - the easy way

 

Warm a glass / ceramic heatproof bowl by pouring boiling water into it and leaving for 5 minutes. Pour out the water, dry the bowl well and pour the chocolate from the food processor into the warmed bowl. Stir the chocolate.

089

Boom. Done.

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{ 31 comments… read them below or add one }

Jessica December 16, 2012 at 12:29 am

This changes everything. Pure genius.

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Izy December 16, 2012 at 12:34 am

God, I know right? I don’t know how I’d never seen this before!

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carey December 16, 2012 at 2:38 pm

NFW. How have I not seen that Good Eats episode? How have I never heard of this before? (Ahhh!!)

I’ve gotten fairly good at tempering chocolate the old-fashioned double boiler stirry way, but I invariably wind up with a bowl of chocolate that falls below prime temp before I’ve finished all my dippings. And while I’ve managed to sort of romanticize the process in my head, the thought of making a second batch is just obnoxious. (And my attempts at very slight rewarming never seem to work—I always wind up with cocoa butter bloomage.)

But oh, the possibilities of THIS! So much easier. I can’t wait to try it!

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Izy December 16, 2012 at 10:48 pm

Yes way! Haha, that was my exact reaction too!
I’ve tried the normal method a few times, but it has never worked as well as this did for me!
SO SHINY.

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Katherine December 16, 2012 at 11:04 pm

Will definitely have to try this method!!

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Loretta | A Finn In The Kitchen December 17, 2012 at 1:30 am

Dang. I really could have used this a week or two ago…Oh well, from now on, it’s my go-to! Although I’ll have to buy another thermometer because mine won’t go all the way down to 90. blah.

Thanks for this one! I can’t wait to try it!

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Sarvani @ baker in disguise December 17, 2012 at 4:01 am

Really?!? Its that easy… I have to do it for myself.. I cant believe it to be honest…this changes everything!!:))

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Heidi @ Food Doodles December 17, 2012 at 10:14 pm

This is so awesome. I’ll be trying this for sure – thanks for posting!

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Natasha December 17, 2012 at 11:43 pm

This is freaking awesome!!

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Erica December 22, 2012 at 6:05 pm

Oh my god! I just pinned this — I will have to try this next time. I always melt my chocolate in the microwave and feel severely judged for my untempered chocolate ;) . Thanks Izy!

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Diane {Created by Diane} December 31, 2012 at 5:23 am

What a great way to temper chocolate I can’t wait to try this! Thanks :)

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Nicole January 21, 2013 at 5:49 pm

This, is, genius. I’ve been hesitant to try tempering chocolate, but this looks foolproof! I can’t wait to top everything with chocolate :)

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Diane Hubler February 7, 2013 at 4:28 pm

This is AWESOME! Thanks for sharing.

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Alexandra February 12, 2013 at 5:41 pm

I’ve always wondered if I should try tempering chocolate for certain things, but I never actually got around to trying it. Now that I see how shiny it makes your chocolate, though, I feel like I need to test this method asap! But what I’m wondering is, can you re-melt the chocolate or warm it up again if it starts setting too quickly? Or would you have to temper a new batch? And what kind of thermometer do you use to test the temperature? I feel like I’m asking stupid questions, but oh well!

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Myra Foster Smith February 21, 2013 at 6:04 am

@Alexandra….I was JUST going to ask the same exact questions!! Thank you Izy…you rock!!

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Izy February 27, 2013 at 12:59 am

Exactly, i could never be bothered before this! I think that if you need to keep it warm, use Altons method of blasting it with a hair dryer, or my method of just putting it into a hot bowl. I used an electronic thermometer cos its the fast way! :) haha no they’re not stupid, they’re very valid questions, I’m just too lazy to write in that much detail hahaha :) x

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Lia @ Sugar & Snapshots February 19, 2013 at 6:35 am

I need to try this… It seems like pure genius. I will report back!

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Jenny February 25, 2013 at 1:27 am

this is legitimately life changing. thanks!

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Kelsie April 21, 2013 at 6:45 pm

I read a bunch of other instructions on how to temper chocolate and they all say to not use chocolate chips at all because there’s some sort of additive in them that doesn’t allow you them to melt as easily as blocks or chunks of chocolate. Does that apply to your method of tempering? Which form of chocolate would be best?

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Deidre May 18, 2013 at 12:12 pm

Well, I tried this without much success. Don’t know where I went wrong. I tried it with 300g of chocolate – half dark and half 70%. I decided to start with about 1/4 of the chocolate and to keep adding small pieces as it was running. First off – pieces of chocolate kept jamming the blades, so it was constant stopping, fixing, adding more chocolate . . . . Got it to the breadcrumb stage, then got it to a ball. Broke it up, and started blending it again. It went back to a ball again. This must have happened at least 3 times until I ended up with 50% still in a ball. I finally gave up and went back to the usual method, but hell it was difficult to get the chocolate out of the food processor as a lot of it had hardened on the sides!

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Greg March 1, 2014 at 4:42 pm

I had the same results, Deidre! So frustrating. Now I have a bowl of re-hardened, blooming chocolate. hat went wrong??

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Choclette May 19, 2013 at 4:16 pm

Tempering chocolate is my nemesis, so I really must give this a try. Thanks for the instructions.

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Dafna | Stellina Sweets July 9, 2013 at 2:41 am

MIND = BLOWN. Seriously?! Alton Brown definitely is a genius, so I’ll have to try this. Wow, who knew. Now, how do you *maintain* the temp if you’re dipping stuff that takes a while?

BTW, you are not alone– I can’t imagine posting blog photos with unsightly bloom streaks. The horror! ;-)

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jenni October 17, 2013 at 6:45 am

I like to use a heating pad on low. Stir it often and remove if the temp climbs. Put back on it if it starts to fall.

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patriciah December 2, 2013 at 5:01 pm

SCIENCE FAIR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!11 here i come. btw i am going to use this for my science fair… looks like hard work but it actually isnt hahaha. thanks alot
i just spent like 5 minutes looking for the submit button…0.o

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Shannon December 19, 2013 at 10:17 pm

Worked perfectly….and this was my first time tempering chocolate!

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Kim February 13, 2014 at 5:48 pm

I used this method today to make chocolate heart filigrees for valentine cupcake toppers and all I have to say is, “WOW!” this worked like charm and I enjoyed every second of the process! It was so fun to try a new method and it really was super easy! Thank you so much for sharing this method and for all of your creative ideas and recipes!

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Rhonda April 18, 2014 at 12:25 am

This was so much fun to make and very interesting…very fascinating process! Thank you!!

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Viky Komninou June 6, 2014 at 1:05 pm

I tried it but as usual I ended up with nothing+ a ruined new blender :’( :’( :’(

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Anna June 6, 2014 at 1:30 pm

I hear you, I HATE spending forever chopping, melting, stirring, checking the temperature of chocolate. I did a patisserie course and almost failed the chocolate component because I just can’t get my head around tempering. One of my instructors had mentioned using a good processor but never demonstrated this method.
I have a shop and sell chocolate topped caramel slice but have never been able to get chocolate in temper even compound chocolate melts bloom for me. I’ve resorted to dusting with cocoa powder to hide my shame! I’m keen to give this a try! Thanks!

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Anna June 6, 2014 at 1:55 pm

Just tried it with 200g (7oz) of dark chocolate melts. I ended up putting it into a warmed glass bowl but so far so good. I’m feeling excited by this method and the prospect of being able to quickly & easily temper chocolate !

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