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How to Melt Chocolate

Chocolate is very sensitive to overheating and will develop into hard, grain lumps if heated above 44 degrees Centigrade or 111 degrees Fahrenheit. This can also happen if hot liquid or steam comes into contact with the chocolate whilst melting. White chocolate is the most sensitive type of chocolate to overheating.

Our recommended method for melting chocolate is by boiling. To do this you need to break it into small lumps and then put it into a heatproof bowl within a gently simmering saucepan of water. The chocolate should not be stirred until it has completely melted and even then should only be stirred gently.

molten chocolate

Chocolate can also be melted in the oven if placed in a shallow ovenproof dish and then put into an oven pre-heated to 110 degrees Centigrade or 225 degrees Fahrenheit until the chocolate has completely melted.

Microwaves can be used to melt chocolate and is very quick, but it is quite a harsh form of heating and so we would recommend boiling or melting in the oven if possible. To melt chocolate in a microwave heat on full power in a microwave dish for about 1-2 minutes. The exact amount of time will depend on the quantity and type of chocolate being used. You will need to stop the microwave every so often to gently stir the chocolate to ensure that it heats evenly.

If chocolate does overheat and develop into lumps then it is very difficult to reverse, although adding a little oil can sometimes help restore it.

Once chocolate has melted you should leave it to cool slightly before adding to other ingredients and for best results the chocolate should always be added to the ingredients and not vice-versa.

Adding butter or oil to the melted chocolate can help to make it smoother for sauces or dipping.


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