If music be the food of love..play on…so said Shakespeare in his famous play As you Like it!These days there is a new food of love…it may also be termed as food of the Gods the way its consumed these days.Its the product of the humble cocoa plant – chocolate.Also the by products are used increasingly in recipes namely cocoa butter,chocolate liqueur and white chocolate.
Buying chocolate sometimes is a bore..believe me.I am a chocoholic and splurge occasionally.But I also know its a great thing to make your own chocolate at home.For this you need to get a block of what is known as “Cooking Chocolate” for best results.This is found in big departmental stores or stores which sell imported commodities.In case you do not get cooking chocolate then try using Dairy Milk Silk -ONLY Milk Chocolate.Not the other types which have nuts or orange peel.Or try plain dairy milk.It works fine.
Now a very important step here is “tempering” the chocolate..which means making it into a coating consistency into which we dip the marzipan mixture.For this take what is known as a “bain-marie”..or in simple words a pan full of boiling(really hot) water over which a smaller pan is kept.Ensure that the bottom of the smaller pan does NOT touch the boiling water and ONLY the steam has to come up.This is because we melt the chocolate in the smaller pan.
So now lets start this fab chocolate which will not only be a favorite with the kids but with people of all age groups!A little chocolate now and then is essential!It relieves you of all tensions – coming straight from a chocoholic!!
MAKES – Approx 20 pieces
25 gms unsalted butter/refined oil/cocoa butter
3 cups waterFor Marzipan Centers:
200 gms almonds
200 gms icing sugar
1/2 tsp almond essence/rose essence
1 egg/1/4 cup milk
For Covering Chocolate:
Heat water in a big pan till it boils vigorously.Keep a smaller pan on top which does not touch the water.Break chocolate into small pieces into the small pan and allow to melt.When the chocolate is almost a molten liquid take it off heat and add the butter/oil/cocoa butter.Stir well till it has a glossy and smooth finish.This is the covering.
Blanch almonds in warm water and take out the skins.Allow them to dry for 4-5 hours and crush them coarsely in a dry grinder.A coffee grinder works as well.Do not run the grinder too much as the nuts will become oily.Now sieve the icing sugar into a bowl and add the nuts powder and essence.Add an egg white or milk to bind the mix into a nice pliable paste.Dust hands with icing sugar and shape small rounds from the paste.Take each shape on a spoon and drop them into the chocolate covering.Ensure the ball is completely coated with chocolate.
On a tray lined with butter/parchment paper or a silicon sheet place the marzipan chocolates and put them immediately to set in the refrigerator.It should take around 30 minutes for the chocolate to really set around the balls.
Once set either wrap the chocolates in foil or cellophane paper or devour as it is..;).Keep in the refrigerator all the time.
1.The covering chocolate can only be used once.In case there is any chocolate left then take a plain sponge cake and dip it into the chocolate for a scrumptious snack.
2.You can add mint essence to the mixture as well to make mint chocolates.
3.White and milk-both kinds of chocolate can be used.