I decided to start making chocolate from scratch so that I can control the type and amount of sweetener in the chocolate. It has been a real challenge to make this but I was able to make an 84% dark chocolate using raw organic honey, cacao butter, raw cacao powder and vanilla. The chocolate does not melt at room temperature, it has a sheen and snaps. The real challenge with making this was the fact that I used honey instead of powder sugar. Honey contains water which makes chocolate seize. Another important factor in making this chocolate is that it has to be tempered. This is the process that produces a smooth, crisp and shiny chocolate.
I have experimented making this chocolate also with coconut sugar. I was able to get the same result with this but it also had a grainy consistence to it. However it tasted really good...
Next, I will try roasting my own cacao beans and really making chocolate from the very first steps.
How to make 84% dark chocolate from scratch using honey
- Melt the cacao butter over a double boiler until it reaches 122°F/50°C.
- Add the cacao powder, honey and vanilla and mix until all combined and the mixture reaches 122°F/50°C.
Now temper the chocolate:
- Pour the chocolate mixture on a marble slab (I used a glass cutting board).
- With a flexible plastic scraper or palette knife, spread the chocolate thinly, then scoop it up before spreading it again. Repeat the sequence, keeping the chocolate constantly on the move for about 10 minutes.
- Test to see if you are done tempering by dropping a little of the chocolate onto the side of the marble and if it sets very quickly that you have finish tempering the chocolate and are ready to pour the mixture into molds.
- Let it cool at room temperature for a few hours.