Couverture Chocolates 101
Couverture is a fancy word for REAL chocolate that is used in the culinary world, it has extra cocoa butter to give it a high gloss. You see most candy shops that offer handmade truffles or bonbons are typically made with chocolate bark or chocolate flavored candy coating. Couverture is made from cocoa butter, cocoa solids, sugar and a lecithin, most of the time, while candy coating has added oils, such as palm kernel oil.
Now, why would you even bother with adding oils to an already perfect product?! And that's a great question! Because real chocolate requires tempering. You have to melt the chocolate and cool it to a specific temperature to make all the cocoa butter crystals tight and uniform. It's what makes the chocolate glossy and gives it that lovely 'snap' when you bite into it. Untempered chocolate is brittle, flaky and cloudy. Have you ever left a Hershey bar in the car and it melted? So you stick it in the fridge and eat it all the same... it gets white swirls and it may have a white film on top of it. It's just condensed cocoa butter. It's safe to eat, but it's not as pretty as it was.
Tempering chocolate can be very....well, temperamental! One stubborn crystal can ruin the whole batch and it's also sensitive to light, ambient temperature and humidity. What a pain! Right?! So, many folks add some oil or wax to alleviate some of those frustrating issues with tempering chocolate. Most couverture chocolate candies are produced in kitchen or factory settings where they can control the air temperature and humidity.
Is there really a difference in flavor? Yes, I think so. The cocoa butter is thicker and coats your palate. For me, it draws out the tasting experience and leaves me more satisfied with a single bite.
Shop All Couverture Chocolates HERE