Try your hand at making your own Easter eggs this year with these handy tips.
Making homemade Easter eggs is not only lots of fun but these make a great present if visiting family or friends over the holidays. Always temper your chocolate and use good quality chocolate or couverture for the best results.
How to temper dark chocolate:
Tempering chocolate helps you to achieve a high gloss and means the chocolate will snap when broken. It also helps to prevent a sugar or fat bloom
1. Melt the chocolate (approximately 300g per egg) in a large bowl over simmering water until it reaches 50°C.
2. Transfer out onto a marble slab/clean worktop and with a chocolate scraper agitate/swirl it to cool it down to 29–30°C.
3. Reheat gently over the simmering water to 31–32°C.
How to fill an Easter egg mould:
1. Make sure that the moulds are clean, dry and polished by rubbing co on wool over the surface.
2. Brush inside the mould lightly with tempered chocolate. Allow to set and then pour in couverture and coat a second me, allowing the excess to flow out. Wipe the brim free of surplus chocolate. Allow to set.
3. Pour in a final layer of the couverture, clean rim and allow to set. Leave mould in a cool place (not the fridge) un l ready to be de-moulded.
4. When adequately set they should de-mould very easily with just some gentle manipulation of the mould. Invert onto a sheet or parchment paper. Using vinyl gloves hold each half of the egg on a hot tray to allow the edges to barely melt and then hold them together to create the full egg. Alternatively, you can pipe a layer of melted chocolate around the rim of each half egg
Types of chocolate:
Chocolate couverture is used for chocolate work as the high percentage of cocoa fat means the chocolate runs easily from a mould when melted, creating a finer chocolate shell.
- Plain couverture: ranges from either very bitter at 70% to cheaper versions of 31%. Plain couverture is a mixture of cocoa mass, cocoa butter and sugar.
- Milk couverture: Process is the same as for plain chocolate but milk powder is added. The mixing is carried out at lower temperatures and the chocolate contains more moisture, up to 12.55% of milk solids may be added to chocolate.
- White couverture: This is made from a blend of cocoa butter, sugar and milk powder. High amounts of sugar are added to it which makes it more difficult to work with. It is prone to rancidity. It should not be exposed to light and it contains little or no cocoa mass.
- Bakers chocolate: This is produced from hydrogenated vegetable fats, cocoa powder, sugar and emulsifier. It is very cheap in comparsion to couverture, requires no tempering and should never be heated above 46–50°C.
Recipe Credit: Edward Hayden
Photography: Brian Clarke at Harry Weir