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A delicious treat that originally hails from the 17th century French Royal Court, bonbons are individual sweets that feature a chocolate or fondant coating, and a delicious filling at their centre. Derived from the French word ‘bon’ meaning ‘good,’ their name alone suggests that these tempting little treats are doubly good… and we couldn’t agree more! Try out our tempting recipe for raspberry-and-cream filled chocolate bonbons, and we promise you won’t be disappointed.
Add the cream and raspberries to a blender (fresh or defrosted frozen raspberries are both fine to use) and blend until smooth. Then take the mixture and push it through a fine sieve to remove the seeds, and set the sieved mixture aside in a cup.
Add the water, sugar and glucose syrup to a saucepan and heat gently, until the sugar has all dissolved. Leave it to bubble, without stirring, until it begins to turn golden. Remove it from the heat to add the butter and the cream and raspberry mixture that you produced in step 1. Stir well to combine everything evenly.
Return this sugar mixture to the heat and use a thermometer to determine when it reaches 110°C. Once this temperature is reached, pour the mixture into a heatproof bowl and leave it to cool completely.
Chop your chocolate into small pieces and add approximately half of it to a clean, dry bowl, suitable for tempering.
Place this bowl atop a saucepan of gently simmering water, stirring the chocolate occasionally as it melts.
Once it has melted, remove the bowl from the saucepan and wipe any water from the bottom of the bowl. Remember – water is melted chocolate’s worst enemy! If you get any water in your molten chocolate, it will cause it to seize up and render it useless for creating bonbon shells… so take care to keep everything bone dry.
Now stir – like your life depends on it! Use a spatula to continuously stir the molten chocolate, adding the remaining half of your broken chocolate pieces as you do so. Be sure to add these bit by bit, waiting for each little batch to melt before adding the next. This should you take you approximately 15 minutes to do.
Measure the temperature of your chocolate – once it reaches around 31°C, dip a metal spoon into the chocolate, then place that in the fridge. If, after 5 minutes, that chocolate is glossy, streak-free and not tacky to touch, then it’s perfect!
Now take your tempered chocolate, warm it slightly to make it easier to work with, and pour it into your chosen mould. If your mould is oven-safe, you could try warming it in the oven for a minute before filling it.
Allow the chocolate to sit in the cavities for 10 seconds, then turn the mould upside-down and allow the excess chocolate to drip off, back into the bowl. Tap the edges of the mould to encourage excess chocolate to fall away. The aim is to produce a chocolate shell which is thin, yet strong enough to support whatever goes inside.
Next, use a metal scraper or palette knife to scrap the excess chocolate from the flat surface of the mould, ensuring the top of each chocolate-filled cavity is level so that it’s easier to seal the chocolates later on.
Now, place the filled mould into the fridge for 2 to 3 minutes; be careful not to leave it in for longer than this, or your chocolate will be exposed to dreaded moisture!
Take your raspberry filling and add it to a piping bag. Using a fine tip, pipe the filling into each chocolate shell, being careful to leave the filling a few millimetres below the edge of the mould, to prevent any leakages!
Finally, add your remaining molten chocolate to another piping bag, and use a fine tip to pipe this chocolate over the top of each filled cavity. Use the metal scraper to once again remove all of the excess chocolate from the mould, leaving only an even coating of chocolate atop each cavity, and then return the mould to the fridge for another 2 to 3 minutes.
Time to serve! Remove the mould from the fridge and turn it over above a clean, dry surface, flexing it slightly to release your bonbons. Sprinkle with a little edible gold dust for a fancy finish, and voila! Homemade bonbons you can enjoy with friends… or keep to yourself!
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