The August 2011 Daring Bakers’ Challenge was hosted by Lisa of Parsley, Sage, Desserts and Line Drive and Mandy of What the Fruitcake?!. These two sugar mavens challenged us to make sinfully delicious candies! This was a special challenge for the Daring Bakers because the good folks at http://www.chocoley.com offered an amazing prize for the winner of the most creative and delicious candy!
Be sure to check out the link for Lisa above as she shows step by step how to make Hot Air (sponge candy) and how hers turned out and mine did not. It's interesting to see the differences.
I was so excited to find out that we were going to be making candy! We needed to create two forms of candy and one had to involve the tempering of chocolate. I have experience tempering as I make chocolate peanut butter buck eyes each Christmas that this family goes crazy over.
As a rather snobbish chocolate consumer I have only found a few truffles that I care for. I always claimed Godiva was my favorite, and yes, I still like Godiva, but with shopping over the internet I can find truffles all over the world and Godiva is no longer my number one.
I have never created a truffle so I was very excited to give it a whirl. Troy likes white chocolate (gag me). Each Valentines Day or Easter I buy a few pounds of Godiva White for him. He doesn't have to worry about me snatching any pieces from his stash!
I decided to try a combination of three different truffles: a white chocolate truffle using white ganache with white chocolate tempered coating, white chocolate ganache with milk chocolate tempered coating and semi sweet chocolate ganache with a dark chocolate tempered covering. Oh yeah.
They aren't beautiful, they aren't even perfectly round..I used a melon baller to scoop the ganache when firm, then rolled into the tempered chocolate to cover. In my next batch I'll add vanilla, maybe hazelnut praline, cinnamon. I used Guittard chocolate and it worked quite well. It doesn't hold a candle to the Belgian chocolate I can order, however.
For my second candy I tried what Canelakes of Virginia, MN (where I grew up) calls Hot Air. This is a boiling mass of sugar, corn syrup and water. After boiling for 10 minutes I removed it from the burner and added vinegar and baking soda for a volcanic effect! The mass created huge air bubbles which I poured into a baking sheet. After it hardened I broke it up to serve. This wasn't so great. It wasn't 'airy' enough and it was very crunchy. We ended up crushing it and using it for an ice cream dessert topping.
I really enjoyed this challenge. I will be making truffles quite frequently now. The combination of chocolates and additional flavorings is just endless. I have some chocolate in transit and can't wait to use it! Steve thought I should try a key lime ganache with bittersweet covering. I just might do it :)