Are you a chocolate lover like me?
A chocolate craving can kick in just about anytime, regardless of the weather, the season or even the time of day. (Yes, I’ve inhaled a chocolate croissant for breakfast before). And when it happens, you can’t think of anything else until you’ve had something chocolate. Here are a few questions I often get about working with chocolate:
1. What does the % number represent on a package of chocolate? That percentage represents the amount of cocoa solids in the chocolate. Chocolate is composed of these cocoa solids, in addition to cocoa butter, sugar, milk and vanilla. The greater the percentage of cocoa solids, the stronger and darker the chocolate is since there is less room for the other ingredients.
2. Can I interchange white and dark chocolate in my recipes? I wish the answer was a simple yes, but it’s a no. White, milk and dark chocolates are not interchangeable in recipes. Because of the different percentages of cocoa solids, the different styles of chocolate melt at different temperatures, but, more importantly, set differently after melting and being incorporated into a recipe, such as mousse or cheesecake.
3. What is that white dust I sometimes see on the surface of chocolate? It may appear to be mold, but that white film you sometimes see on chocolate is called a “bloom.” It is simply a bit of cocoa butter that has come to the surface of the chocolate, and is a sign that the chocolate perhaps got a little too warm or cold at some point. The chocolate is still 100% fine to use even if it has this bloom.
4. How should I store my chocolate? Chocolate should be stored in a cool, dark place in order to avoid developing a “bloom” from a change in temperature while storing. Chocolate typically keeps for a year, but follow the date on the package or wrap. If you’ve opened a block or package of chocolate and not used it all, store it in an airtight container or resealable bag.
For today’s Monday Giveaway, I want to know:
What’s your favourite chocolate treat?
Answer this question in the comments section below by 6 pm ET today and 5 of you will be randomly selected to win a Real Women of Philadelphia apron and spatula!*
Check out my Quick Tip video on how to best melt chocolate, and now that I have you craving something chocolate, click HERE for a quick and tasty recipe on Cooking with Philly for Chocolate Truffle Cups.
Thanks and good luck, everyone!
*Some restrictions apply. Click HERE for Official Rules for today’s RWoP apron and spatula giveaway.
This giveaway is now closed. We will randomly select 5 of you and send you a Private Message this evening. We'll report back soon and let you all know who won!
Update: Cogratulations to the winners of this giveaway: KimOh, Patty, ToCo, irolori and Carol Stickney!