Sometimes, I make chocolates for Valentine’s Day and share them. But this week, my motivation was a ski getaway for the Family Day long weekend, during which much junk food and sweets were consumed.
The recipe comes from Making Artisan Chocolates and is marked DIFFICULT. There are three two sub-recipes to make for the filling, then dipping and finishing. It’s a lot of steps, but I didn’t find it hard, just time-consuming.
To make the first component, the banana purée, you just blend bananas and icing sugar. I used an immersion blender, and didn’t bother to strain the mixture. The other component is a caramel crunch: it’s just granulated sugar and corn syrup, heated until amber, then poured onto a Silpat, then flattened with another silicone sheet. Once cool, the caramel is pulverized in a food processor. I ended up with a lot of dust, rather than a coarse powder.
The ganache filling combines the above two items, with white chocolate, milk chocolate, cocoa butter, cream, butter, rum and vanilla! I can see how a long ingredient list can deter a casual chocolatier, but I can tell you the results are worth the effort.
Once the ganache was made, I let it cool at room temperature, eventually using the fridge to speed things up. Once it was firm, I used a small cookie scoop to portion out the filling. It needs to dry out overnight before it can be rolled and dipped.
The next evening, I tempered some chocolate, then put on some cotton chocolate handling gloves, to roll the ganache centres into rounds. Immediately after dipping each center, I rolled them in a 50:50 mixture of cocoa powder and sugar.
I can’t believe how well balanced this chocolate is. Even with my less-than-ripe bananas, the flavor is pronounced and distinctive. However, there was no evidence of any crunch at all; I think the ganache contains too much liquid so the sugar dissolved. Next time, I’ll save some time and effort by skipping the caramel.