The chocolate has to be brought up to temperature between 115 and 120 (but not over 120) degrees and then it gets cooled back down to 88 to 90 by adding more chocolate into it after removing it from the heat. If the temperature isn't exactly right, the chocolate won't come out right. You might get a partial temper but it won't be perfect. I was able to get it partially tempered and I was pretty happy with it. It wasn't as shiny as it should have been but it did snap nicely and it had a great texture. I am looking forward to practicing it more (which I hear we will do a LOT of in the next term).
Before we could temper the chocolate, we had to have something to put it on, so we made Toscaners and Florentines.
The Toscaners are these lovely little cakes with a caramel almond mixture on top...
This is before it's baked
After it cools, it gets cut up into rectangles and dipped in the tempered chocolate...
They were soooo tasty!
The florentines were quick and easy(ish) to make. The dough takes about 2 minutes to make and then it's baked. As soon as they come out of the oven and while they're still completely hot, you round them with a round cutter dipped in oil.
They're basically nuts and candied orange peel, pretty tasty
The bottoms get covered in the tempered chocolate and then I used an icing comb to make the design
In Term 2 we'll be tempering chocolate a ton for candies and stuff and that will be exciting. I am thinking about practicing at home.... ;-)