So, yesterday I tried my hand at the second method of tempering (crystallising the cocoa butter within chocolate). This one is called the seeding method, and involves stirring small pieces of already tempered chocolate into melted chocolate to cool it and to introduce the right kind of crystals. Again, temperature matters here. This method was much less messy than using the marble slab but not nearly as satisfying.
Happily, I got this method down pat too, and used the tempered chocolate to make rose and jasmine truffles.
They looked pretty for about half an hour, until the chocolate started cracking a little and the ganache filling began to ooze out in places. I did my reading and learned that this was because the ganache was too cold when I dipped it, meaning that the chocolate cooled and contracted too fast. Oops. A useful lesson!
I also made cumin and coriander discs (courtesy of Paul A Young’s recipe from Adventures with Chocolate). These are very robust and are not for the faint-hearted! Luckily I like strong flavours.