Daring Bakers’ August Challenge: Candylicious

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!

This one was a hard one for me since tempering chocolate in Miami is nearly impossible. The humidity levels are way, way too high, but I still gave it a shot.

For the chocolate candy, I used the white chocolate dipped marzipan squares. Imade the marzipan from scratch. I ground the almonds.

Then prepared the syrup.

When the marzipan was done I started with the chocolate. Grr. Miami hunidity!

I think the biggest problem I had was that the marzipan wasn’t cold enough, so it wasn’t holding itse;f together too much, but oh, well, it still tasted great, even if it’s not too pretty.


For the non-chocolate part of the challenge, I made Penuche, a type of fudge. First heat the milk and sugar.

Remove from heat and add the butter and vanilla. Do not stir.

Then beat, add the pecans or walnuts and pour into pan.


White Chocolate Dipped Candied Orange & Pistachio Marzipan Bonbons

1½ cups (17½ oz/500gm) Marzipan
1/2 cup (2 oz/60gm) Pistachios, shelled & peeled, whole or roughly chopped
1/2 cup (3 oz/90gm) Candied Orange Peel, Finely cut
2 tablespoons (1 oz / 30ml) Cointreau or Grand Marnier Liqueur, optional
1¾ cups (9 oz/250 gm) white chocolate

1. (If using liqueur) Pour the Cointreau or Grand Marnier over the candied orange peel, place into a covered dish and allow to soak overnight
2. Knead the soaked peel & pistachios into the marzipan until well distributed
3. Using a small amount of icing sugar to stop the marzipan from sticking, roll out to a height of about 2cm
4. Cut into squares
5. Temper the white chocolate
6. Carefully lower each square of marzipan into the chocolate with a dipping fork
7. Tap the fork on the side of the bowl to remove excess chocolate
8. Place chocolate on parchment paper
9. Decorate as you like
Tip: You can use transfers or sprinkle crushed pistachio or candied peel. You can also wait for the chocolate to be semi set then use your dipping fork to mark the top of the chocolate
10. Once fully set, cut off any feet with a sharp knife
11. Enjoy!

Tempering Ranges:

Dark: 45°C-50°C > 27°C > 32°C
Milk: 45°C > 27°C > 30°C
White: 45°C > 27°C > 29°C

Dark: 113°F-122°F > 80.6°F > 89.6°F
Milk: 113°F > 80.6°F > 86°F
White: 113°F > 80.6°F > 84.2°F

Chocolate is melted and heated until it reaches 45°C / 113°F. Tempered un-melted chocolate is then stirred and melted in until it brings the temperature down to 27°C/80.6°F. It is then put back over heat and brought up to its working temperature of 32°C/30°C/29°C /// 89.6°F/86°F/84.2°F depending on the chocolate you’re using. It is now ready for using in molds, dipping and coating.

• Finely chop chocolate if in bar/slab form (about the size of almonds).
• Place about ⅔ of the chocolate in a heatproof bowl
• Set aside ⅓ of the chocolate pieces
• Place bowl over a saucepan of simmering water (make sure the bowl does not touch the water)
Tip: Make sure that your bowl fits snuggly into the saucepan so that there’s no chance of steam forming droplets that may fall into your chocolate. If water gets into your chocolate it will seize!
• Using a rubber spatula, gently stir the chocolate so that it melts evenly
• Once it’s melted, keep an eye on the thermometer, as soon as it reaches 45°C / 113°F remove from heat (between 45°C-50°C / 113°F-122°F for dark chocolate)
• Add small amounts of the remaining ⅓ un-melted chocolate (seeds) and stir in to melt
• Continue to add small additions of chocolate until you’ve brought the chocolate down to 27°C/80.6°F (You can bring the dark chocolate down to between 80°F and 82°F)
• Put it back on the double boiler and bring the temperature back up until it reaches its working temperature of the chocolate (milk, dark or white) as seen in the above chart. (32°C/89.6°F for dark, 30°C/86°F for milk and 29°C/84.2°F for white)
• If you still have a few un-melted bits of chocolate, put the bowl back over the simmering water, stirring gently and watching the thermometer constantly.
IMPORTANT: You really need to keep an eye on the temperature so that it doesn’t go over its working temperature.

Pecan Penuche

  • 1 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup milk
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 cup pecans, coarsely chopped

In a 3-quart saucepan combine the sugars and milk, and bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly. Continue cooking without stirring until the mixture reaches the soft-ball stage (236 degrees F on a candy thermometer). Remove from the heat. Add the butter and vanilla, but do not stir. Let the mixture cool without stirring until it reaches 110 degrees F and the outside of the pan feels lukewarm, about 40 minutes. While the mixture is cooling, butter an 8-inch-square pan. With a wooden spoon beat the mixture until it becomes thick and begins to lose its gloss. Quickly stir in the pecans, and pour into the pan. (Don’t scrape the sides, since they may be sugary.) Cut with a sharp knife into 1-1/2-inch squares.


1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Katie
    Aug 27, 2011 @ 12:10:26

    I’ve never seen someone make marzipan from scratch before! Thanks for showing the process!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: