Monday, December 20, 2010

Our Chocolate Making Class at ChocoLee!

Last weekend, Fiona and I ventured over to Boston's South End to attend a chocolate making class at ChocoLee! The class of 11 was taught by the owner, Lee Napoli, who after many years of working in top restaurants around Boston, achieved her dream of opening up her own chocolate shop in 2007. One of the first things we did for the class was taste some chocolate covered candies from the shop...

They look pretty delicious, right? Well, THOSE are actually some of the chocolates that we made during class!! I know for sure that you'll want to read the whole post now =) We did eat some from her shop at the beginning though, and they looked very similar to the final class product.

The class was taught how to make simple ganache recipes, how to use transfer paper to embed little patterns like hearts onto the tops of the chocolates, how to temper chocolate correctly, how to chop chocolate in a safe way, how to dip and decorate truffles, and how to create chocolate bark with toasted almonds. The class was separated into different stations where you could jump from chopping chocolate, to melting chocolate, to decorating chocolate so you could get some experience with everything.

the start of dipped truffles!

Fiona and I really wanted to see if we could try to work on a particular set of chocolates from start to finish, and I think we succeeded! We started out taking turns chopping huge chunks of milk chocolate, and then tempered the chocolate over the stove. On the other side of the room, some girls were decorating the candy molds with edible dust, so we used one with pink dust (of course!) and then filled the mold with our tempered milk chocolate.

Lee showed us this fantastic technique to do this which involved slamming the mold against the table mulitple times, and flipping the mold upside down and swirling the mold around so chocolate is flying through the air and landing *hopefully* onto a baking sheet. Then, after scraping off the excess chocolate, those went into the refrigerator to set.

Then, there were a few different fillings that we could use, but we picked our favorite: salted caramel! Fiona filled the chocolate shells using a pastry bag, and then I covered the mold with another layer of milk chocolate. After scraping off the excess chocolate, these went into the freezer for 20 minutes. After that, a few big bangs on the table, and the chocolates popped out! They were round and shiny, with bits of pink dust on top, and they were delicious!!

Fiona ready with the thermometer

I just swirled chocolate all over the place, and the shells are ready to go in the refrigerator!

filled with gooey salted caramel

our little pink dusted chocolate candies!

Don't they look like professionally created candies? They were so cute, and tasted amazing. At the end of class, everyone shared their creations and took home a box of over 20 chocolates each, and some pieces of toasted almond + dark chocolate bark.

Overall, the class was a lot of fun, and the three hours flew by! I highly recommend taking the class, and it would be fun for couples as well =) You can get more information about classes here. This brings homemade wedding favors to a whole new level if you really wanted to impress your guests!



Meredith said...

You two are adorable in these photos :)

Juliet Douglas said...

Looks like SO much fun!!