I guess lots of you have been watching the BBC2 Great British Bake Off television series. Rather unmissable watching for any aspiring baker ! Paul Hollywood and Mary Berry set the bakers some rather tough challenges indeed. There has literally been blood, sweat and tears put into the series.
One of my favourite episodes was when they made chocolate teacakes. Teacakes are a thin chocolate shell filled with a light marshmallow creme and finished with a digestive biscuit as the base.
The 6 cell semi sphere / half round moulds required to make these are available for just £5.99 each here
The bakers had to make these on the hottest day of the summer. Many had problems getting the chocolate to temper and set, as the ambient temperature was higher than the setting temperature of the chocolate. A challenge indeed ! I'm rather glad it wasn't me making them that day.....
Anyway, I decided to have a go at making these delicate orbs. Not faced with a blistering hot summer day or the pressure of a competition, they really were quite easy to make. Aside from the disruption of a not-quite-four-year-old practically flooding the bathroom whilst I was in the process...
If you don't know how to temper chocolate, I did write a short guide.
Always the one to attempt something a little different, I had a play at spattering white and gold coloured cocoa butters into the molds prior to creating the chocolate shell by flicking it from the end of a brush. This gave them a sparkly and almost cosmic appearance and I was delighted with the finish.
The GBBO recipe calls for 400g of dark chocolate, whereas I used 200g of milk and 100g of 70% dark chocolate with plenty left over. I poured a small amount of tempered chocolate into each cavity and simply held the mould at different angles until the inside of cell had the thinnest coating of chocolate, letting any excess run back out into the chocolate bowl for reuse.
I will admit - I was rapidly running out of time trying to complete these BEFORE going into work, so I did cheat and used a chocolate digestive biscuit as the case and sealed it in with more chocolate.
The packet biscuit was a perfect size and thickness for the job, but it was a bit on the hard side - I think homemade would have been better without doubt. The marshmallow creme was also a bit over sweet for my liking and there was easily enough to fill 12 shells rather than 6 as stated....I intend having another go at these and will be making the biscuits this time and playing around with the marshmallow creme filling !
Happy Baking to any of you having a go at the baking challenges.
Sarah-Jane Nash - www.siliconemoulds.com