Seed Tempering Dark Chocolate At Home

Tempering chocolate can be intimidating for the home chef, but we’ve developed the ultimate Askinosie guide to tempering our Dark Chocolate Baking Bits via the seeding method. 

What Is Tempering & Why Do It? 

Tempering is, essentially, heating and then systematically cooling chocolate to ensure that the crystals that chocolate is comprised of are properly aligned, ensuring glossy, snappy, and consistent chocolate. 

What Happens When Chocolate Isn’t Properly Tempered? 

Untempered or improperly tempered chocolate can: 

  • have an unpleasant mouthfeel or thick consistency
  • have a gray cast, or be dull in its sheen (a.k.a. “bloom”) 
  • melt easily onto hands and fingers when held

What Can Tempered Chocolate Be Used For?

In the home kitchen, tempered chocolate is commonly used for making confections and bon bons, drizzling over baked goods, making hot cocoa bombs, chocolate-dipped fruits, and candies. At Askinosie, we use tempered chocolate for everything we make, including our award-winning chocolate bars

Gingersnap Cookies

What Is Seed Tempering? 

While several methods exist for tempering chocolate, seed tempering is one of the easiest to do at home. Seed tempering refers to adding solid, chopped chocolate chunks into a batch of melted chocolate until tempering occurs. 

What Tools Do I Need To Seed Temper Dark Chocolate At Home?

Since this guide is tailored to the home baker, we break down how to simply (and safely!) seed temper chocolate via the double-boiler method below. Double boilers are comprised of two separate metal pots, one stacked atop the other. Water is simmered in the lower pot while chocolate bits are added to the upper pot. Steam from the simmering water slowly heats the chocolate in the above pan. 

You’ll need: 

  • Askinosie Chocolate Baking Bits- 1 to 2 lbs (1 or 2 bags) 
  • Double boiler OR metal bowl and saucepan
  • Candy thermometer or rubber spatula with a built-in thermometer 

    Seed Tempering Dark Chocolate In Six Simple Steps: 

    1. Gather your tools and ingredients
    2. Add about two-thirds of Baking Bits into a metal bowl or into the top pan of the double boiler (save the remaining Bits to be used later), then:
    • Add water to the bottom pan of your double boiler OR
    • Add water into a saucepan that you can place your metal bowl over, essentially creating your own double boiler

    For the most even and consistent melt, consider a slight chop of the Baking Bits beforehand.

    PRO TIP: The water should only partially fill the bottom pan. Your pan or bowl should not be touching the water. The steam will heat the chocolate and reduce the chance of overheating. Keep the heat on low– this tip applies to both the double boiler and the saucepan + bowl method. Do not let any water (or steam) come into contact with the chocolate at any point, as even a small amount can cause your chocolate to seize.

    Melting Chocolate

    3. Stir the chocolate bits frequently, and heat to 113°-115°, ensuring the temperature does not exceed 120° Fahrenheit (about 49° Celsius)
    4. When the chocolate reaches 113°-115°, remove the top boiler pan or bowl from heat (keep your water simmering, you’ll use it again later), fully dry the bottom of the pan or bowl (remember, water and chocolate do not mix!), and slowly stir in the remaining Baking Bits a little at a time, stirring continuously, letting the chopped bits fully melt before adding more. The bits, as they melt, will cool the melted chocolate- keep the chocolate moving.
    5. Monitor the temperature of the chocolate closely. Once the temperature drops to 84°-82° Fahrenheit, place the pan/pot back over the simmering water and stir until the chocolate reheats to 88-90°.
    6. Your chocolate is now ready to drip, drizzle, and dazzle!

    PRO TIP: Work quickly– tempered chocolate must be used before setting (hardening), or it will need to be re-tempered. Keep your water simmering, if your chocolate starts to thicken, return it to the simmering water for a few moments and stir until it starts to thin. Do not let the chocolate warm beyond 90°. 

    FINAL TIP: To DIY Baking Bits, we recommend carefully crushing up your favorite Askinosie dark chocolate bar and seed tempering as described above. Please note you’ll need about 1-2 lbs. of chocolate, about 5 1/2 bars. 

    Chopped Askinosie Chocolate

    Ultra Dip-able, Super Drizzle-able Recipes

    Looking for the perfect cookie or confection recipe to dip or drizzle with tempered chocolate? We’ve got you covered! Find easy-to-follow recipes for cookies and more! Check out all recipes on The Nib