I do love Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, but the chocolate is not tempered and although utterly delicious they are a little sweet. My chocolates are tempered so they have a great shine and snap. My peanut butter filling is a ganache, with flakes of sea salt and cayenne chilli powder – mummmm.
This is the second in my series of chocolate making guides; this time I’m using moulds. I have used two types a soft flexible gun design and a rigid polycarbonate dome mould.
Moulds can easily be found on line, the gun one came all the way from China for less than £3.
The rigid moulds will give a high gloss finish and can be found both on line and at Lakeland for about £10
There are two stages start off with making the ganache to fill your chocolates.
To Make The Ganache You Will Need
- 45g Double Cream
- 90g White Chocolate
- 2 Tbsp Smooth Peanut Butter
- Half Teaspoon Cayenne Chilli Powder
- Half Teaspoon Sea Salt Flakes
In a microwaveable bowl heat the cream on full power for one minute. Tip the chocolate chips or buttons into the cream, mix once and allow to stand for a minute or so.
Mix the chocolate and hot cream together until all the lumps have melted and you have a smooth glossy texture. Use a spoon not a whisk for this as you should not incorporate air.
Stir in the Peanutbutter and Cayenne. Mix thoroughly and finally add the sea salt flakes and combine fully. I add the salt last as over mixing will make the salt dissolve and I really love the crunch they give to the finished chocolate.
Pile the mixture into a piping bag and leave aside to cool, not in the fridge as it will get a little too firm for piping.
Start off tempering your chocolate. I melt mine in the microwave on 30 sec bursts, it is essential that you stir the chocolate thoroughly even if it looks like nothing is happening. See my guide to tempering chocolate.
Fill your moulds to the top, bang the moulds on the work surface to knock out any air bubbles (especially for the intricate shapes like the gun moulds).
If the chocolate settles and leaves a little gap fill it up, overfill them.
Working over a scrupulously clean work surface turn the moulds over and bang the side of your mould with a scraper. This will give you a cascade of chocolate tumbling out of the moulds and pooling on the worktop – don’t worry you scrape it up and use it again.
Take the lined moulds out of the fridge and fill them with your ganache. Leave a little space, don’t fill them right to the mould edge, you need to have enough room to close the shell off with more molten chocolate.
Run more tempered chocolate over the whole of the mould, or if you prefer you can pipe this bit on. Tap the mould on the work surface again and then scrape away any excess chocolate (before it sets). You should now have a fully enclosed ganache in each section of your mould. Pop the whole thing into the fridge to fully crystallise (that’s a posh way of saying set).
Take the moulds out of the fridge and release the chocolates. For the hard polycarbonate moulds grab hold of the short sides and firmly twist the mould., you may hear a cracking noise – that’s good.
If you have any chocolates that are firmly stuck you need to be careful how you remove them, do not use anything metal as you will damage the surface of the mould and ruin it for future use.
Optional Step 9
The guns have been made in a silicone mould and they will have a matt finish – this cannot be avoided with a soft mould, but the finish is still attractive. I was making my guns for a gift my friend and colleague Daniel is having a James Bond 40th Birthday party so naturally he has to be The Man With The Golden Chocolate Guns!
I have dusted off my finished chocolates with gold lustre powder and I think that finishes them off nicely. Let’s hope he likes them…