Candy Dipping Tips
Whether you want to make a romantic dessert, give the gift of chocolate or just spoil yourself, candy dipping adds a beautiful and delicious finishing touch to strawberries, cookies, pretzels and much more.
Dipping is not a difficult process, but it can take time and require a few pieces of specialized equipment.
Choosing a dip: There are three choices available.
Confectioner’s coating is a chocolate-like product, also known as white chocolate, almond bark or summers coating. It is available in block form or round disks and preferred by many candy makers because it does not require tempering; simply chop and melt.
Semisweet chocolate contains at least 35 percent chocolate liquor, additional cocoa butter and sugar. Available in pieces, block form and round disks.
Milk chocolate contains at least 10 percent chocolate liquor, additional cocoa butter and 12 percent whole milk solids. Also available in pieces, block form and round disks.
Tempering semisweet or milk chocolate: A must for professional-looking dipped candies.
Tempering refers to the process of melting and cooling chocolate to the correct dipping temperature. As chocolate melts, the cocoa butter separates from the chocolate liquor. Then, as the mixture cools, the cocoa butter blends evenly back into the chocolate liquor. Without tempering, the surface of the chocolate will speckle or develop gray streaks as it hardens.
Dip chocolates on a cool, dry day, 60 to 65 degrees F. Use no more than 1 to 1-1/2 pounds of chocolate for dipping to ensure maximum coverage of candies. More than 2 pounds is difficult to keep evenly melted during the dipping process. Finely chop the chocolate so it will melt quickly and evenly.
Place water in bottom of a double boiler to within 1/2 inch of the upper pan. Make sure the upper pan does not touch the water or the chocolate could be overheated. Bring water to boiling and remove from heat. Place about one-fourth of the chocolate in top of double boiler and set over hot water until chocolate begins to melt. Add remaining chocolate, about 1/2 cup at a time, stirring constantly after each addition until melted. Stir until chocolate reaches 120 degrees F.
If chocolate does not reach 120 degrees, reheat water by removing upper pan of chocolate. Bring water to boiling and remove from heat. Then place the upper pan over hot water again.
Once the chocolate has reached 120 degrees, refill bottom of the double boiler with cool water to within 1/2 inch of the upper pan. Place chocolate over cool water. Stir frequently until the chocolate cools to the dipping temperature of 83 degrees F. This should take about 30 minutes. When dipping you will want to work quickly, stirring chocolate frequently to keep it evenly heated. Chocolate will stay close to dipping temperature for about 30 minutes. If chocolate cools to below 80 degrees it will need to be re-tempered.
Dipping: Use any treat as long as it’s dry. Otherwise you risk “seizing” the chocolate and ruining it.
Fruits: Hold the stem or green leaves of the fruit and dip into the chocolate and swirl to cover two-thirds and leave the very top unvarnished. Give the fruit a shake as you lift it out of the chocolate. Place on the prepared greaseproof sheet. Allow the chocolate to harden for 30 minutes.
Candy: Drop one at a time, into melted chocolate and turn to coat. Lift out and draw fork across rim of pan to remove excess chocolate. Invert onto a baking sheet lined with waxed paper. Twist fork slightly as candy falls so you can swirl the top. Allow the chocolate to harden for 30 minutes.
Cookies and pretzels: Hold onto edge and dip into melted chocolate, swirl to cover two-thirds and leave the edge unvarnished. Shake as you lift out of chocolate and place on prepared greaseproof sheet. Use a spoon to cover remaining area with chocolate. Allow to harden for 30 minutes.
1. Chocolate Dipping Tips ~ Dip it in Chocolate
2. How to Dip Truffles in Chocolate – Candy – About.com