Earlier this year I made a couple of soft-centered chocolates for the Sweet Swap and shared my efforts with a few lucky recipients around the country. At the time, I blogged my recipe for caramel hearts, but I’ve held off on this new recipe, because Christmas is really where it’s at for home made chocolates.
If you’re going to make chocolates, it’s likely you’ll attempt it at this time of year.
Before you start, you’ll need to invest in a couple of chocolate molds. Bendy silicone molds are perfect because they are really easy to unmold afterwards, and you can often find clear plastic trays as well. Because these choccies are small and square, you could even use an ice cube tray, especially those small squarish numbers.
Once you have clean chocolate molds to work with the rest is fairly easy. Take your time and when working with the chocolate, try to keep the bowl wrapped in a couple of warm tea towels to keep it fluid for as long as possible.
Makes 30 small chocolates
- 350g dark chocolate
- 100g milk chocolate
- ½ cup (125ml) pouring cream
- hot chilli powder
Break 100g dark chocolate and 50g milk chocolate into small pieces.
Heat the cream in a small saucepan over medium heat until it comes to the boil. Turn off the heat and add the chocolate pieces. Stir continuously until the chocolate has melted and the ganache is glossy.
Add chilli powder ¼ teaspoon at a time and stir it into the ganache thoroughly. Taste test after each addition. You want a gentle kick of spice at the end of your palate, rather than an immediate burst of pain. Take your time and add it sparingly until you reach the desired heat level. Bear in mind that the flavours will intensify a little over the next 24 hours, so err on the side of caution if you prefer. When you are happy with the result, pour the ganache into a small bowl and refrigerate for 2 hours until cold and thick.
Break 200g dark chocolate and 50g milk chocolate into small pieces and place in a heat proof bowl. Melt the chocolate in the microwave or over a double boiler until the chocolate is melted and smooth.
Finely chop the remaining 50g dark chocolate and add it to the melted chocolate. Stir it in well until it has completely melted. Place the bowl of slightly cooled chocolate back in the microwave for just 10 seconds and then stir it well. Your chocolate has now been tempered, meaning it will stay nice and hard but glossy when you make your chocolates, giving them a shiny finish.
Gently spoon one teaspoon of chocolate over the bases of the chocolate molds. Tilt the tray from side to side so the chocolate covers the base evenly. Place the tray in the fridge for 20 minutes to harden the bases.
Spoon or pipe a pea-sized ball of ganache into the centre of each mold, making sure it doesn’t touch the sides of the mold. Fill the molds to the top with remaining melted chocolate and gently tap the trays on the bench top to help settle the contents. Place the trays in the fridge for at least 30 minutes until the chocolates are completely set.
Gently peel the molds away from the chocolates and place a chocolate in a small foil or paper case before packing them up into pretty gift packs.
If you simply want to keep these for yourself rather than hand them out as gifts, they are best stored in an airtight container in the fridge and will last up to two weeks.
$8.50 for 30 chocolates