This month’s challenge actually had nothing to do with baking, but, really, I’m not complaining, because it had to do with chocolate. We even learned how to temper chocolate, which was really useful, since there’s a technique you have to master if you don’t want to screw up your chocolate (see this pic to understand).
The August 2011 Daring Bakers’ Challenge was hosted by Lisa of Parsley, Sage, Desserts and Line Drive and Mandy of What the Fruitcake?!. These two sugar mavens challenged us to make sinfully delicious candies! This was a special challenge for the Daring Bakers because the good folks at http://www.chocoley.com offered an amazing prize for the winner of the most creative and delicious candy!
I went with two chocolate-dipped candies:
- marzipan with Grand Marnier-infused candied orange peel and pistachios
- honeycomb (sponge) candy
The former was very, very easy to make. The latter, um, not quite as easy.
The first attempt at making honeycomb candy resulted in an enormous river of caramel lava overflowing out of the glass dish that I was hoping would contain it. It also was a bit too moist (I cooked it until 285F), so the second time, I made a much smaller batch that I heated to 300F. The candy was perfect – crunchy, not sticky or chewy. It’s actually easy to make once you have the recipe/technique down, and dramatic. Even my caramel-hating boyfriend liked the taste of it, too.
I used the seeding method of tempering the chocolate, since I don’t have a scraper and didn’t want to mess with the marble/granite method. As it turns out, with a decent thermometer and a microwave, the seeding method turned out just fine.
More pics after the jump…