Gluten Free Chocolate-Dipped Squares
The chocolate filling in this recipe is a little different than others as it has a custard base. If you prefer, you can leave out the alcohol or interchange it for another type. If you’re looking for a more intense flavour, dip the squares into dark chocolate.
I've added my notes in brackets after each ingredient if you prefer your treats a little more wholesome and dairy-free too!
- 690 g (1 lb 8 oz) good-quality milk chocolate, coarsely chopped (use organic, dark chocolate instead)
- 40 g (11/2 oz/about 2) egg yolks
- 75 g (23/4 oz/1⁄3 cup) caster (superfine) sugar (use coconut sugar, ground finely instead)
- 250 ml (9 fl oz/1 cup) cream (35% fat) (use coconut cream from the top of a refrigerated can of full-fat coconut milk)
- 15 ml (1/2 fl oz/3 teaspoons) butterscotch schnapps (optional)
Line a 33 x 23 cm (13 x 9 inch), or similar sized, slab tin with baking paper so it goes up the sides. Spray a small amount of vegetable oil underneath the paper if needed. Put the chocolate in a bowl.
Whisk the egg yolks and sugar together by hand in a medium bowl. Put the cream in a saucepan over medium heat and bring to the boil. Pour the hot cream over the egg mixture, whisking by hand to combine. Return the mixture to the pan over low heat, stirring gently with a heatproof flexible spatula or wooden spoon, until the temperature reaches 82°C (180°F), to create an anglaise. (If you don’t have a thermometer dip a wooden spoon in the mixture, lift it out and draw a line through the mixture on the spoon with your finger. If the anglaise runs straight over the line, it’s not ready. If the line holds without any drips, it’s ready. Do this process quickly, before the anglaise runs off the spoon.) Once the anglaise reaches temperature, immediately strain it over the chocolate, whisking by hand until all the chocolate is melted. Whisk in the butterscotch schnapps.
Pour the mixture into the prepared tin and leave at room temperature for a minimum of 24 hours. If your room is too warm (above 23°C/73°F), place the ganache in the refrigerator for a short period of time just until it firms up. Remove your ganache from the tin and mark it with a ruler into individual 3 cm (11/4 inch) squares. Using a large, straight-bladed knife, cut out the squares, cleaning the knife in between each cut. Separate the squares ready for dipping.
- 800 g (1 lb 12 oz) good-quality milk chocolate, coarsely chopped (dark, organic chocolate)
- Dutch-process cocoa powder, for dusting
- acetate, cut into 75 x 4 cm (11/2 inch) squares (optional)
Temper the milk chocolate (see pages 12–14). Line a flat tray with baking paper. Pick up one chocolate square at a time, so it’s balanced on the end of a dipping fork (use a bamboo skewer if needed to help you balance), and dip it into the chocolate to coat the square with a thin layer of chocolate. Tap the fork a few times on the surface of the chocolate to remove the excess chocolate from the square. Wipe the base of the dipping fork on the side of the bowl and place the chocolate square on your lined tray. Sprinkle the surface with cocoa powder and gently press a square of acetate on top (the plastic square is optional) until it is in direct contact with the chocolate. Keep the plastic square in place for as long as possible to obtain a gloss on the surface of the chocolate.
After every three or four times you use the dipping fork, gently wipe it with paper towel to avoid a build-up of chocolate. Reheat the chocolate as needed with a hair dryer and repeat the process until all the chocolate squares are dipped. Place the squares in the refrigerator for 5–8 minutes, then remove the plastic squares (which can be reused). The remaining chocolate can be well wrapped and stored in an opaque container until required. These chocolates have a 1-week shelf life. They should be stored in an airtight container at room temperature or in the refrigerator if your room is too warm.
Images and recipes from Chocolate by Kirsten Tibballs (Murdoch Books) Photography by Greg Elms RRP $49.99 available now in all good bookstores and online