Tempering is really very simple, and although it takes a little time, it is worth the effort to achieve a really professional gloss. You will need a sugar thermometer, and then all the process requires is to take the couverture to a certain temperature and then to cool it. This changes the crystalline structure of the chocolate and makes it shiny and manageable.
To temper chocolate:
- First break the chocolate into small pieces. If it comes from a professional supplier it may already come as buttons.
- Place the chocolate in a heatproof dish. Make a bain-marie by standing the dish in a pan of simmering water over a low heat, and warm through, stirring occasionally.
- Then, when the chocolate reaches 45°C, remove the dish from the bain-marie and stand it in a pan of cold water. Mix well and allow the temperature to drop back to 2S°C.
- Finally, return the dish to the hot bain-marie, mix well and heat the chocolate to 30°C.
- The chocolate has now been tempered and is ready for use.