Chocolatier Michael Recchiuti says that everyone, even the experts, finds chocolate intimidating. Here is something he told us while we were developing our recipes for chocolate candies, refining our process, and tempering a lot of chocolate: “Chocolate is an organic medium, which has few ingredients, but [is] extremely complex in crystal structure. Practice and patience is the only way to achieve a good temper and positive results. If you mess up the temper, you can always remelt the chocolate and try again. It is worth the frustration; all of us at Recchiuti go through learning curves every day, that’s what makes it so interesting to work with chocolate. Chocolate is like playing music: Practice will allow for better results and [a] higher level of comfort the more you work with [chocolate].”
For white and milk chocolate: Heat to 116 to 118 degrees Fahrenheit; cool to 80 degrees Fahrenheit; reheat to 85 to 87 degrees Fahrenheit. For dark chocolate: Heat to 118 to 120 degrees Fahrenheit; cool to 80 degrees Fahrenheit; reheat to 88 to 91 degrees Fahrenheit.