The question I always tend to ask myself before baking something is: would I eat this if I was offered it? This stems from back in the day when I found myself making things because they looked pretty in the magazine but that didn’t ‘really’ appeal to me, in terms of ingredients. It’s these types of pitfalls of experimenting we sometimes fall into, especially if you are on the first try of a dish and you are doubtful to begin with about it’s taste. Another one of those pitfalls is the ‘how hard can it be’ thought and ‘this looks fancy, must be delicious’. I’m not afraid to admit that I’m easily charmed by nice pictures for example, there is something about a lovely glossy piece of fruit or meat that gives an instant gratifying feeling and you wish to extend that feeling as long as possible by making the meal as soon as possible.
One thing that has never disappointed me is chocolate. It’s the (sometimes) solid brown or white rock that I can always count on to taste just as delicious as I imagined it. In any shape or form it has always delivered on it’s promise. Till this day I have yet to taste chocolate, melted or otherwise, that was not good.
While tinkering in the kitchen on a batch of cupcakes as a gift for a friend I decided I would try out the mother of gruesome chocolate-y tasks: tempering my own chocolate for decorations. I wanted to make letters to spell out her name and after watching about a dozen YouTube videos on the subject I was confident, only a little, that I could pull it off. With no candy thermometer on hand ( or any thermometer at all really ) I worked my way through 2 bars of 250 grams of chocolate. In the end I managed to make the chocolate do what I wanted and the result was exactly as I hoped: sweet, delicious chocolate that snapped properly and looked lovely. The wasted chocolate was a small price to pay for this success, and even if my first decorations were quite small they brought plenty of joy that cannot be found in a packet in a store.