Chocolatier électrinique


Temperature and Humidity Over-Tempered Chocolate
Water and Chocolate Seized Chocolate
Adjusting the Melt Temperature Dipping
Tempering Large Quantities Dipping Fruit
Adjusting the Viscosity of the Chocolate Double and Triple Dipping
Perfecting the Finish Leaves, Squares, Sheets, Curls and Cups
Tempering Untempered Chocolate Moulding
Confectionery Recipes Cake Decoration

Temperature and Humidity Top

Chocolate is best stored in a dry, cool, dark place: 13-15°C (55-60°F) is ideal. Do not store chocolate in a refrigerator and do not place chocolate next to anything with a strong smell – the chocolate will absorb the smell and be spoilt. Properly wrapped and stored chocolate will keep for up to a year.

The process of tempering chocolate always works best at normal room temperature, i.e. where the temperature is between 20-22°C (68-70°F) and the relative humidity below 50%. Check the conditions before you start and again while you work.

Water and Chocolate Top

Never mix water with the chocolate if you wish to temper it. Even the slightest amount of moisture can cause the chocolate to seize. For this reason, make sure that the machine and utensils are thoroughly dry, that the chocolate is no more than 10°C (17°F) colder than room temperature and that any pieces to be coated are free from surface moisture. If the chocolate is more than 10°C (17°F) colder than room temperature, condensation will form on its surface as soon as it is exposed to the warmer conditions.

Adjusting the Melt Temperature Top

Most chocolate will temper perfectly if it is initially melted at 43°C (109°F), the default setting. Cocoa butter, the ingredient affected by the tempering process, melts completely at this temperature. If, however, the chocolate manufacturer recommends a higher melt temperature – 55°C (131°F) for example – you can raise the thermostat setting, if you wish, using the button for +Heat. Every touch of the +Heat or -Heat buttons moves the thermostat setting 2°C (4°F).  The thermometer symbol on the display indicates the direction of change.  The maximum melt temperature is  61°C (144°F).  The thermometer symbol disappears when the thermostat setting is returned to normal, 43°C (109°F).

Tempering Large Quantities Top

If you are going to need more than 700gm (1.5 lb) of tempered chocolate, you can replenish the pool of tempered chocolate as you use it. Melt the extra chocolate in a bain-marie and let it cool to just below 34°C (94°F). If you plan to use a lot of chocolate this may take some time. As you use the chocolate you have tempered, replace it gradually with untempered melted chocolate. Add the melted chocolate behind the baffle and let it blend with the tempered chocolate already in the machine. It takes only a few seconds for the mixture to become fully tempered. We recommend that you start to replenish as soon as you have used 100cc (4 oz), using a ladle of this capacity to replace the quantity used. If the melted chocolate is too hot or too cold when you add it, the mixture will not temper properly. If this happens press the button Melt, wait for the cursor to return to the central position indicating that the mixture has reached 43°C(109°F), press the button Temper and add more 'seed' chocolate.  Proceed in the normal way.

Adjusting the Viscosity of the Chocolate Top

Tempered chocolate is slightly viscous.  The degree of its viscosity determines how much chocolate will cling to a dipped piece. If the chocolate is very viscous the coating will be thick and if the chocolate is runny the coating will be thin. In most circumstances the tempered chocolate you produce with your machine will give satisfactory results; however if you need to adjust the viscosity this is what you do:
  • If the chocolate pool is slightly too thick, you can add a small amount of cocoa butter (½ - 1 teaspoon) to thin it. Manufacturers of couverture vary the percentage of cocoa butter depending on the use to which the chocolate will be put. If the chocolate you are using is a bit low in cocoa butter, adding a few grammes will alter the characteristics of the end product noticeably. Either add the cocoa butter using the technique for Tempering Large Quantities or place the cocoa butter behind the baffle and go through the whole cycle again: press the button Melt and, when it is thoroughly incorporated, press the button Temper and add more 'seed' chocolate.  Proceed in the normal way.


    Perfecting the Finish Top

    Most chocolate will temper satisfactorily at the default settings: make a couple of test samples to be sure. If the finish is slightly streaky, the chocolate is either a bit too hot or took too long to cool. Make sure that the temperature and humidity of the room are correct. Otherwise, either lowering the temper temperature slightly, or cooling the finished product with a fan, or refrigerating it for a couple of minutes should put things right. If the finish is too matt, raising the temper temperature or adding a touch of cocoa butter as described in the section Tempering Larger Quantities can help to bring up the shine.

  • The temperature of the tempering process can be adjusted by pressing the buttons marked +Heat and -Heat at the end of the tempering cycle when the sign for Ready is displayed.  Pressing these buttons lowers and raises the temperature in this mode, in 0·05°C (0·1°F) steps.  The thermometer symbol shows the direction of change. You should only make this adjustment at the end of the tempering cycle when the sign for Ready is displayed.

  • If you would like to know more about the reasons for the formation of bloom on untempered chocolate read the ChemBytes e-zine on "Chocolate in Bloom"
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    Tempering Untempered Chocolate Top

    If the 'seed' chocolate you are using is not fully tempered, either because it has been stored in a warm place or because it has been melted and allowed to go cold, use the slower Temper 2 option.  This cycle includes a longer cooling phase. It should be used in the rare event that the faster Temper cycle fails to work.

    Over-Tempered Chocolate Top

    If the chocolate over-tempers and becomes thick – the presence of pieces of cool or solid chocolate in the bowl will cause this – you can correct the error. Press the Reset buttom followed by the Melt button.  Wait for the cursor to return to the central position, indicating that the mixture has reached 43°C(109°F), then press the Temper button and place 85gm (3oz) of solid chocolate behind the baffle. Continue to temper in the usual way.

    Seized Chocolate Top

    If the chocolate has seized by coming into contact with water and becomes very thick, like porridge, you will have to start from the beginning with fresh chocolate.  The seized chocolate can be saved and used in any recipe which calls for chocolate melted in a liquid such as cream or milk. For example, you can use it to make Ganache.

    Dipping Top

    Many items can be completely or partially dipped in tempered chocolate. For perfect results follow these simple rules:
  • Make sure the piece is completely dry. Dust the piece with cornflour if there is any chance of surface moisture.

  • Use good quality couverture with a fat content of 34-36%. The fat percentage is the major factor effecting the thickness of the coating. Too little fat will result in a thick coating, too much fat may make the coating a bit transparent. The ideal thickness of coating is a matter of personal taste, but many believe that a thin coating of approximately 2mm is ideal.

  • If the piece is to be covered completely, select a suitable dipping tool.

  • Prepare a sheet of unwaxed paper or parchment for placing the dipped pieces.


    To dip you may either:

  • Stop the machine briefly while you dip by pressing the Pause button or, keep the machine running.

  • Sturdy items can be dropped into the moving chocolate pool and fished out when they are completely covered.  This process works best if the pieces are dropped in on the right hand side and fished out on the left, so that they float through the pool from one side to the other.


    When the piece is satisfactorily covered, drain it thoroughly by skimming the surface of the chocolate pool with it to draw off any excess liquid chocolate or scrape the excess on the edge of the baffle clip. Drop the piece gently onto the paper. If you are using a tool, you can decorate the top of the piece by pressing down lightly or by using the tail of chocolate that falls from the tool to mark a swirl or other design on the surface. Store in a cool dry place. Allow 24 hours for the pieces to be fully set.

    If a dipped piece cracks, the centre you used was probably too cold. Allow plenty of time to bring refrigerated centres to room temperature.

    Dipping Fruit Top

    Fruit must be thoroughly clean and dry before dipping. Use a paper towel to dry each piece and handle with care to avoid releasing any moisture. Pieces of fruit that are to be completely covered may be dusted with cornflour first.

    Double and Triple Dipping Top

    Additional bowls and baffles are available to allow two or more different types of chocolate to be worked on one after the other. Cooled pieces dipped in one type of chocolate can be dipped again to produce a contrasting finish.

    Leaves, Squares, Sheets, Curls and Cups Top

    Tempered chocolate can be spread on any clean, dry, non-absorbent surface to cool and harden. Acetate sheets are ideal for this purpose.

    For Leaves and Squares, spread the chocolate evenly over the acetate sheet with a fluted spreader or offset spatula in order to achieve the desired thickness. Score the chocolate in the shape of your choice before it is fully set.

    For more complex shapes, you may bend the acetate and hold it in place with a paper clip or a staple.  When the chocolate is cool and hard, peel the acetate away, and store the chocolate shapes in a cool, dark, dry place.

    Tempered chocolate spread evenly on a hard surface, such as a marble counter, can be formed into decorative curls by drawing a knife or scraper along the marble once the chocolate is sufficiently firm. If the chocolate has the correct consistency, it can be rolled up into tight tubes or gathered into loose fans.
    Perfecting these techniques requires practice.

    Moulding Top

    Many different shapes can be moulded using tempered chocolate. For perfect results follow these simple rules: 
  • Make sure the mould is completely dry and at room temperature. 

  •  Use good quality couverture with a fat content of 39-40%. Or add additional cocoa butter to the couverture. If the fat content is lower than 39% the fine detail on the mould may not transfer on to the finished article.  

  • Ladle the quantity of tempered chocolate required into the mould. For solid objects shake the mould gently to release any air bubbles and make sure the mould is perfectly full. For hollow objects, coat the inside evenly, pour out any excess, and stand upright on a rack to drain.

  •  For the best results use a vibrator table to remove any bubbles - see the Products page for details - alternatively paint the mould thoroughly with tempered chocolate before you start to reduce the risk of small bubbles being trapped between the chocolate and the mould. Allow to cool and harden before proceeding. 

  • Set to harden in a cool place.  You may use a small electric fan to speed the process. Allow 24 hours for the pieces to be fully set. Unmould and store in a cool, dry, dark place.

  • Cake Decorating Top

    There are two basic ways to use tempered chocolate to decorate cakes: 
  • Use any of the different shapes from the section 'Leaves, Squares, Sheets etc' and stick these to the cake surface using butter cream, jam or traditional icing.   It is important to plan your design in advance. Using transfer sheets to decorate sheets or squares is particularly effective. 

  • Since pure tempered chocolate sets rock hard, it is not a suitable 'icing' for anything larger than a bite-sized item. However an excellent icing can be obtained by stirring into the tempered chocolate up to 10% by weight of a neutral, tasteless oil. This is best added by very slowly pouring it in behind the baffle. Ensure that the oil is not cold - 30ºC is ideal. Place the cake on a wire rack over a sheetpan and pour the thinned tempered chocolate evenly over the cake. When the chocolate sets, trim around the base. The chocolate will set with a tempered chocolate sheen, but with a softer texture.
    Important Tip: make sure the cake is at room temperature before being iced and to protect the finish do not store the cake below 10ºC/50ºF - a normal refrigerator is not suitable. If you are obliged to store the finished article below 10ºC/50ºF then transfer the item to a cool place for an hour before exposing it to room temperature. If the difference between the item and the environment is greater than 10ºC/18ºF it is likely that condensation will form on the cold surface.

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