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Another newbe trying to learn to temper chocolate

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 

I have been trying to learn to temper chocolate. I have made three attempts and failed. I have been following Greweling’s seeding method in his Chocolates and Confections:


1.       Warm the chocolate to 50°C.

2.       Slowly add chopped up tempered chocolate (seed) to cool warmed chocolate to 27°C.

3.       Warm to 32°C and use. I have been agitating it significantly.


The problem is that the chocolate seed never melts. It just becomes a thick part melted, part unmelted paste. When I warm the paste up to 32°C, it does melt after a lot of agitation, but it is not tempered. I have been using Bernard Callebaut (not Berry) dark chocolate. I have tested it with two thermometers and the temps are accurate. It has been hot (25-28°C) and relatively humid here.


I have already searched and read some other threads, but I still don't get it. The weather? I would appreciate input.

post #2 of 4

When I temper chocolate I only bring it up to about 47°C - normally around 46-49°C anyway

S    Seed it back down to 27°C - Stirring constantly - Motion equals good crystallization aka tempering

      Then back up to 32°C



      I would say perhaps only add the seeding chocolate bit by bit - the seeding chocolate is only there to help cool the mixture down - So if you are finding it doesn't all melt - probably means you could use less but it will take a little longer to get to 27°C 

      However, even if the seeded chocolate not melted, you can sieve that out and still have tempered chocolate, as long as its hit the right temp. and assuming that some of your chocolate is still at a fluid melted stage that you can work with.  (sieve once you've melt it back up to 32°C)



      Make sure there is NO water or liquid in your chocolate, spoon, bowl or any of your equipment - and I mean NO liquid at all - not even the smallest drop. - Humid weather will not help this because even a little bead of sweat or liquid will seize the chocolate -

      Find the coolest place you can work - 

      DO NOT heat higher than 32°C - Very important.


post #3 of 4
Thread Starter 

Thanks hgclark,


How does one sieve chocolate. I can't image it going through a strainer. What tool would you use?


I have held back about 1/3 for seed. How much would you recommend?


An additional question. Why doesn't the original solid tempered chocolate not melt at an outdoor temperature of 27C? Why doesn't the tempering chocolate become solid at 27C?


The weather is changing now - colder and less humidity. I know one problem is that the outdoor temperature was around 27C. I will wait for a cooler day and try again with your recommendations.

post #4 of 4

I'm sure hgtclark can answer the questions better, but see if I can help.  About the thick paste, the melted chocolate could be overseeded.  It'll be thick and still have chunks of unmelted chocolate.  You can hold back less for seed ,1/4 or less.  You don't need a lot.  You can also heat the batch a little or add some more warm melted chocolate.



Why doesn't tempered chocolate melt at 27C?  Because you have tricked the chocolate ( fats) into crystallizing in a very stable form.  You've tempered the chocolate.  It stays firm at room temperature.  It needs an extra push to melt it.   Melted chocolate probably will turn solid at 27C, but it could take a long time. 


Cooler weather can help.  Best to work at a room temp around 20C. 


Hope this helps.

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