AllStar Atlas


Candy Making Show

Basic Facts and Tips:
  • Never let chocolate come in contact with water – it will immediately harden – this includes water-based products such as colorings and extracts. You must use oil-based products.
  • Use a dipping fork or spoon to simplify the dipping process. These can be purchased at most craft stores in a set of two.
  • To make a truffle look professional, put melted almond bark in a disposable cake decorating bag or a freezer bag, snip a tiny bit off the end and zigzag across the tops of the truffles.

General Tips

1) Don´t get burned! To avoid getting burned while making candy, attach your candy thermometer to a wire whisk and lay the whisk across the top of your cooking pan.

2) For a candy making surface that can take the heat, use a sheet of aluminum foil. Spread candies such as peanut brittle, fudge, or almond bark in a thin layer on a foil-lined cookie sheet. Cool the candy at room temperature or in the refrigerator and then gently remove from the foil.

Use a Candy Thermometer

It is important to cook candy to the correct temperature. If you make cooked candy often, a candy thermometer is essential. 

Thermometers are available in cookware stores and some supermarkets. Test the accuracy of your candy thermometer before using. If a candy thermometer is not available, use the cold water test as described in the section titled "Cold Water Test." However, using a thermometer is much easier and more accurate. 


What if your recipe calls for melting chocolate along with water or some other type of liquid? That´s fine, as long as the liquid is mixed with the chocolate from the beginning of the melting process, it won´t get grainy on you. Be careful though, because adding even a drop in mid-melting will cause this problem.


Alternatively, you can melt chocolate in a dry oven. Place grated chocolate in a metal bowl and place it in an oven set at 110°F (if your oven doesn´t go that low, use the lowest temperature and keep the door ajar). Your chocolate will melt in about an hour.


To create a chocolate coating of manageable consistency for candies and other treats, add shortening, peanut or vegetable oil in a ratio of 1 tablespoon fat to 6 - 8 ounces of solid chocolate and melt them together.

Why Chocolate Turns Gray or Discolored Sometimes

There's nothing quite like opening a much-anticipated box of chocolates only to find discolored, slightly gray candy. When chocolate turns gray like that, one of two things could be the culprit: Sugar Bloom or Fat Bloom.

Sugar bloom is normally caused by surface moisture. The moisture causes the sugar in the chocolate to dissolve. Once the moisture evaporates, sugar crystals remain on the surface. If this process is repeated, the surface can become sticky and even more discolored. Although sugar bloom is most often the result of overly humid storage, it can happen when the chocolate has been stored at a relatively cool temperature and is then moved too quickly into much warmer surroundings. When this happens, the chocolate sweats, producing surface moisture.

Fat bloom is similar to sugar bloom, except that it is fat or cocoa butter that is separating from the chocolate and depositing itself on the outside of the candy. As with sugar bloom, the most common causes of fat bloom are quick temperature changes and overly-warm storage.

Although it might look a little less appetizing than a lustrous, rich chocolatey-brown piece of candy, chocolate that has suffered bloom is still okay to eat. You may find the texture of sugar-bloomed chocolate to be a bit grainy on the outside, but it should still taste good. To prevent this from happening to your chocolate, simply use proper storage methods.

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