Homemade Assorted Box of Chocolates

Homemade Assorted Box of Chocolates

Have you ever secretly wished you were a chocolate artisan? Here is your chance with this homemade assorted box of chocolates. This box contains 3 unique and distinctive flavours: salted whisky caramel, lemon and thyme, and crispy hazelnut.

YIELDS

36 pieces

PREP TIME

15 minutes

COOK TIME

20 minutes

INGREDIENTS

What you need for the Dark Chocolate Salted Whisky Caramels

  • ¾ cup (170 g) unsalted butter
  • 2 cups (400 g) Redpath® Golden Yellow Sugar, lightly packed
  • ¾ cup (180 ml) light corn syrup
  • 1 – 14 oz can (1 cup + 1/4 cup) sweetened condensed milk
  • ⅓ cup (80 ml) whisky, divided
  • ¼ tsp (1 g) fine sea salt
  • 1½ tsp (7 ml) vanilla extract
  • flaky or coarse sea salt (e.g. maldon sea salt)

To Assemble:

  • 2 ½ cups (445 g) dark chocolate chips, or chunks chopped into pieces ½ inch (1 cm) pieces

For the Candied Lemon Peel:

  • 2 lemons, preferably organic and washed well
  • ¾ cup (150 g) Redpath ® Granulated Sugar
  • ¾ cup (180 ml) water, plus more for blanching

For the Ganache:

  • 200 ml (200 g) heavy cream
  • zest of 2 lemons
  • 5 sprigs of fresh thyme
  • 3 ½ cups (625 g) white chocolate chips or or chunks chopped into pieces ½ inch (1 cm) pieces
  • 2 tbsp (28 g) unsalted butter
  • 1 recipe candied lemon peel

To Assemble:

  • 2 ½ cups (445 g) dark chocolate chips, or chunks chopped into pieces ½ inch (1 cm) pieces

What you need for the Crispy Hazelnut Cinnamon Clusters

  • 3 cups (500 g) whole hazelnuts
  • 1 egg white
  • ¼ cup (50 g) Redpath ® Granulated Sugar
  • 1 tbsp (12 g) cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp (1 g) fine sea salt
  • 1 ½ cups (200 g) wafer cookies, crushed
  • 2 ½ cups (445 g) milk chocolate chips, or chunks chopped into pieces ½ inch (1 cm) pieces
  • ¼ cup (45 g) white chocolate, to decorate

INSTRUCTIONS

*Please see instructions for how to perfectly temper chocolate at the end of this recipe.

How to prepare the Dark Chocolate Salted Whisky Caramels

1. Grease and line a 8” x 8” (20 x 20 centimeters) with parchment paper. Leave about a 2 inch (5 cm) overhang on all four sides for easy removal.

2. In a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium heat, melt butter. Add Redpath® Golden Yellow Sugar, corn syrup, condensed milk, ¼ cup (60 ml) of the whisky, and salt. Gently stir to combine, making sure not to get the sugar on the sides of the pot. Bring mixture to a boil stirring often. Heat the mixture until a candy thermometer registers between 242℉(117℃) to 248℉(120℃). This will take approximately 15 to 20 minutes. Bringing the caramel to the higher temperature will yield a firmer caramel.

3. Once sugar has reached the desired temperature, take it off the heat. Stir in the remaining whisky (20 ml) and vanilla extract until well combined. Immediately pour caramel into prepared pan. Cool completely at room temperature. Sprinkle caramel with flaky sea salt. Cut into 1 1/4” (3.2 cm) squares, about 36 caramels.

To assemble

1. Temper dark chocolate according to directions below. Using a fork dip cooled caramel squares into the chocolate, scraping any excess chocolate off on the side of the bowl. Lay on a parchment lined baking sheet and sprinkle with coarse salt and allow to set at room temperature.

 

How to prepare the Lemon Thyme White Chocolate Truffles

The Candied Lemon Peel

1. Slice off both ends of the lemon and using the tip of a paring knife cut through peel and white pith from top to bottom, making an incision about ½ inch (1 cm) deep. Repeat slicing around fruit so there are about 8 even sections. Gently separate each section from the fruit as though hand peeling an orange. Slice off any excess white pith, leaving about ⅜ inch (5mm) of skin and pith in total.

2. Place peel in a small pot and cover with cold water. Bring water to a simmer and cook for 10 minutes. Drain, cover peel with fresh cold water and repeat cooking process. Drain again return to pot, adding Redpath® Granulated Sugar and water; bring to a simmer over medium low heat and cook for 40 minutes; remove peel to a bowl and cool in syrup. Once cooled cut 6 pieces of peel into ⅛ inch (3 mm) pieces and 2 pieces into ½ inch (1.2 cm) long thin strips; set aside.

The Ganache

1. Bring the cream, zest and thyme to a simmer in a medium saucepan. Remove from heat, cover and let steep for 30 minutes. Return cream to heat and bring to a boil; immediately pour through a strainer over the chocolate. Let chocolate stand for two minutes, add butter and stir gently until smooth. If mixture begins to separate, add a tablespoon of heavy cream and continue to stir until it comes back together. Stir in the ⅛ inch (3 mm) pieces of candied lemon peel and chill for at least 1 hour.

2. Once chilled, scoop 1 ¼ inch (3 cm) balls of ganache using a small cookie scoop (we made 25 g balls using a 1 ½ tablespoon scoop). Set aside to reach room temperature before dipping.

To assemble

1. To coat truffles chocolate temper dark chocolate following the instructions below. Dip ganache ball in chocolate and remove with a fork. Remove excess by pulling bottom of fork along the edge of the bowl of chocolate and gently place a strip of candied peel on top. Allow to set at room temperature.

How to make prepare the Crispy Hazelnut Cinnamon Clusters

1. Preheat oven to 325℉ (165℃). Lay hazelnuts on a rimmed baking sheet and bake for eight minutes. Place hot nuts in a clean tea towel and rub to remove skins; set aside.

2. Reduce oven temperature to 300℉ (150℃). In a medium bowl whisk together the egg white, Redpath® Granulated Sugar, cinnamon and salt. Stir in hazelnuts any lay out on a greased or parchment lined baking sheet. Bake in oven for 20 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes, until egg mixture is golden and crispy; set aside to cool. Once cooled coarsely chop and combine in a large bowl with the crushed wafer cookies.

3. Temper milk chocolate according to instructions below. Pour over the hazelnut wafer mixture and stir to combine. Immediately drop by the tablespoonful onto a parchment lined sheet and let set at room temperature.

4. To decorate melt the white chocolate in the microwave, stirring every 15 seconds. Place in a small plastic bag and cut a small tip of the corner off; drizzle chocolate over rocher.

How To Temper Chocolate

1. Measure the amount called for in individual recipe of best quality chocolate (dark, milk or white) and roughly chop into ½ inch pieces (chips can be left whole).

2. Bring 2 inches (5 centimetres) of water to a boil in a medium saucepan; lower heat so water is at a bare simmer. In a heatproof bowl that will sit at least 1 inch (2.5 centimetres) above the simmering water place ⅔ of the chocolate. Set the bowl over the water and melt the chocolate, stirring, until an instant read thermometer reaches the melting temperature in table below. Turn off the heat, take bowl off the water and slowly begin adding the remaining ⅓ of the chocolate – this process is called seeding. Continue to add the unmelted chocolate until the pieces have melted and the temperature of the chocolate has dropped to the cooled temperature. This may take about 10 to 15 minutes.

3. Once the cooled temperature is reached gently bring the chocolate back up to the working temperature by placing the bowl over the hot pot of water for about 10 seconds, stirring constantly. Keep placing the bowl on/off the hot pot of water until chocolate reaches the desired temperature (this may happen quickly). Use the chocolate immediately, flashing it over the hot water as necessary to keep it at the working temperature. 

  Melting Cooled Working
Dark Chocolate 50℃ (131℉) 29℃ (82℉) 32℃ (90℉)  
Milk Chocolate 45℃ (113℉) 28℃ (82℉) 30℃ (86℉)
White Chocolate 45℃ (113℉) 27℃ (81℉) 29℃ (82℉)

CHEF'S TIP

Save the syrup from candying the lemon peel and use in cocktails or served over vanilla ice-cream.