While eating and drinking for pleasure, chocolate must surely top the list as a comfort food. Chocolate can be used for cooking as well as baking, although not all types of chocolate are ideal for use in your kitchen. Some of the most scrumptious desserts on this planet are made out of chocolate. Cooking with chocolate can be one of the most demanding skills as well.
Before cooking with chocolate, there are several basic tips associated with it. Chocolate comes from the seed of the cacao tree. It is use for cooking and contains more cocoa butter, (about 50-58% percent concentration), as opposed to typical chocolate bars sold in shops.
Generally known as baking chocolate, bitter or unsweetened chocolate, this type is produced from hardened chocolate liquor. The cacao beans are ground and liquefied until they become the liquor. The fluid is then put into molds of bars and allowed to solidify. It is then packaged and sold as the unsweetened dark form. Baking or unsweetened chocolate is what is used for making desserts in general. It is the chocolate of choice for the majority of skilled chefs and chocolate masters.
Nonetheless, for people looking for sweet versions, you will discover variants to the unsweetened types.
Melting chocolate takes only a few minutes. You may have experienced leaving a bar in a car on a scorching day. Converting it from a solid to a velvety liquid, void of ugly clumps, may be a more difficult task.
Cooking with chocolate flawlessly requires your full attention. In general chocolate melts at a comparable degree as your body temperature. Heating it too high will separate the cocoa butter. This causes unwanted clumps, or may burn it. Expert bakers use a candy thermometer to dissolve it accurately. Heating dark chocolate to about 100°F to 120°F and melting white chocolate only 115°F. is the correct way.
Bittersweet and Semisweet Chocolate what are the differences?
When sugar, vanilla, and lecithin are included with the unsweetened chocolate, it becomes bittersweet, semisweet or sweetened types. It depends on how much sugar has been added.
Where you live also has something to do with various components. There are different requirements for the amounts of chocolate liquor necessary for the sweetened types. According to Manufacturers’ Association inside the U.S., semisweet types have to come within 15 to 35% cocoa liquor. Bittersweet types must include at least 35% chocolate liquor.
If the recipe does not clearly state that you need “sweetened,” “bittersweet” or “semisweet,” the default chocolate most recipes use is the unsweetened baking chocolate. Otherwise, you can ruin your baking, since sugar is often added separately, along with a decreased percentage of chocolate liquor in the sweetened types. Pay close attention to your recipe on the amount of sugar needed, and the specific type of chocolate used. This could cause your final baked good, to not taste delicious. After all your hard work, you want amazing tasting chocolate!
You might enjoy these 2 posts as well, Cookbooks I LOVE for Fall & Winter Baking and Cooking and Gourmet Seriously Good Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe.
For people who have a real passion for cooking with chocolate, some people choose this as a career. They are known as master chocolatiers. Many master chocolatiers begin as a pastry chef. There are also specific schools designed for the sole purpose of attaining the level of a master chocolatier. To these individuals, chocolate is a true form of art. One the rest of us can truly admire!
By Valerie Garner
Here is a cookbook I LOVE filled with many chocolate recipes that are proven winners