I am sure that I am not alone in finding men difficult to buy for. This week sees my husband’s birthday, our wedding anniversary and Father’s day! I like to get something personal in there and previously we made Father’s Day biscuits. This year I was lucky enough to go on a chocolate course, so this year he has a chocolate gift. The beauty of hand-made chocolate as a gift is that is can be tailored to the receiver. That is what they prefer and any dietary requirements such as diabetes. Of course these can be made for many other occasions like birthdays and Christmas – and not restricted to just men.
Temper the chocolate
First of all we learnt that we needed to control the temperature when heating up and cooling down our chocolate – this is called tempering. If you do not do this stage correctly then the chocolate may not look right – covered in white patches, and crumble rather than snap.
Heating up temperatures:
Milk Chocolate: 105-113 degrees F (40-45 degrees C)
Dark Chocolate: 114-118 degrees F (46-48 degrees C)
White Chocolate: 100-110 degrees F (37-43 degrees C).
Cooling down temperatures:
Milk Chocolate: 86-88 degrees F (30-31 degrees C)
Dark Chocolate: 88-90 degrees F (31-32 degrees C)
White Chocolate: 80-82 degrees F (27-28 degrees C).
Father’s Day Chocolate Gift – Almond Truffles
2 lb milk chocolate
1 pint of cream
Balloon whisk (optional)
Grease proof paper
Blue tissue paper.
A black gift bag.
Step 1 – Make Chocolate Ganache
For a good quality chocolate you want to buy one that contains 70% cocoa. We opted for milk chocolate.
Weigh and break up your chocolate and put it in the metal bowl (glass bowls will also work). Put some water in the saucepan, enough so that when it boils it will heat up the chocolate but do not let it touch the bowl. Slowly heat up the water and stir the melting chocolate so it does not stick. Make sure no water goes into the chocolate and use the tea-towel to lift the chocolate from the saucepan and to place underneath the bowl on the worktop.
Boil the cream and slowly and carefully pour it over the melted chocolate, whilst whisking the two together (you can stir if you do not have a balloon whisk). Allow the ganache to cool, then cover well and store in the refrigerator. Ideally leave over night before using.
Simply take your ganache and roll it into small balls to make truffles. You may wish to cover the ganache/truffles in melted chocolate, roll it in cocoa, or in our case add chopped almonds. This was simply done by just rolling the truffles in the desired product (in this case chopped almonds).
We simply then wrapped each one in blue tissue paper and popped them in a black bag.
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