There are many ways to temper chocolate, some more involved than others. No matter which method you choose, precision temperature is of the utmost importance. Whether you use the classic stovetop or microwave method or even the unique method of using a sous-vide cooker, if the temperature is not right, the chocolate won’t be right. I learned terrific information about tempering chocolate from the folks at ecolechocolat.
I thought CVap Cook and Hold Ovens would provide the necessary control, and I was right!
Set the CVap Cook and Hold Oven to Vapor 125/Air 130. For Legacy Models: Constant Cook ON, Food Temp at 125, and 1 level Browning. Set the timer for an hour. The chocolate we used for this experiment was Ghirardelli Dark Chocolate.
Place 3 lbs in a stainless bowl wrapped with plastic wrap to keep the water off the chocolate, and place 1.5 lbs of chocolate in a vacuum-sealed sous vide bag. The chocolate was warmed in the CVap oven until reaching its critical temperature of 120°F. The chocolate actually reached its temp in 30 minutes, but allow an extra ten minutes, just to be safe. Once the chocolate is removed, set the cabinet to Vapor 90/Air 90 or Legacy 90 +0.
While the oven was cooling down, stir the tempered chocolate in the bowl just until smooth and returned it to the 90°F oven.
With the vacuum-sealed chocolate, press lightly until the chocolate is evenly distributed and return it to the oven.
Add some fruit! While the chocolate is in the first stage of tempering, hot-marinate freshly sliced pineapple in the same cabinet, slow-poach it in orange juice, sorghum molasses, and a dash of chipotle pepper.
Wash and dry fresh strawberries and then dipped them into the freshly tempered chocolate. Beautiful. Grill the warm poached pineapple. Top it with the warm marinade and chocolate-dipped strawberries, and then drizzle a bit more tempered chocolate to finish. What a sweet Valentine’s experiment indeed!