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Perfect chocolate curls? You need patience, the right tool.

Perfect chocolate curls? You need patience, the right tool Have perfect chocolate curls eluded you? With these tricks, success is assured.

The secrets are the tool--a standard flexible-blade vegetable peeler like the one at left--and the technique--getting chocolate to just the right temperature. White and milk chocolate curl most readily; dark chocolate can be finicky, though not too difficult to work with.

Easy Chocolate Curls

For a quantity of curls, warm each bar as you need it. Use a regular oven if your microwave oven is 500 watts or less; low-wattage microwaves can heat unevenly.

1 or more bars semisweet, white, milk, or bittersweet chocolate without nuts or filling, each 3 to 4 ounces and about 1/4 inch thick, unwrapped

Place chocolate, scored side down, on a sheet of cooking parchment or foil, about 8 by 10 inches.

In a microwave oven, heat chocolate on parchment, uncovered, at full power (100 percent) until edges of chocolate give slightly to gentle fingertip pressure. Warm for 15 seconds, check, then warm for 5 seconds at a time until chocolate tests as indicated. Total time will be 15 to 40 seconds, depending on oven's wattage and the kind of chocolate.

In a conventional oven, place chocolate on foil on oven rack in a 150[degrees] oven until edges give slightly to gently fingertip pressure, 1 to 1 1/2 minutes.

If chocolate gets to soft, let it cool for a few minutes.

SEt chocolate on paper or foil on a counter, aligning a long side of bar with counter edge; let paper or foil hang over edge. Stand with your hip to the counter. With 1 hand, gently hold end of chocolate bar closest to you. With the other, hold peeler perpendicular to edge and rest blade on opposite end of bar. Firmly and evenly, pull peeler toward you along bar, peeling off chocolate to make a curl.

If chocolate strip splays out instead of curling, neaten it up with your fingers. Some curls will wrap around themselves; others break off into short sections.

With tip of peeler, lift each curl to a flat surface to cool and firm. Turn paper 180[degrees] and repeat to make curls from opposite long side of bar. As chocolate bar gets thin, it's inclined to break; just pull peeler over smaller pieces.

If chocolate is too firm to curl smoothly, or if it firms as you work, rewarm in a microwave oven on full power (100 percent) for 5 to 10 seconds at a time, or in a conventional oven at 150[degrees] for 30 seconds.

Save chocolate scraps for other uses. If made ahead, store curls airtight up to 1 week. A 3-ounce bar makes 1 3/4 to 2 1/4 ounces (1 1/2 to 2 cups) curls.

Per ounce semisweet; 144 cal.; 1.2 protein; 10 g fat; 16 g carbo.; 0.6 mg sodium; 0 mg chol. White: 154 cal.; 1.4 protein; 8.5 g fat; 18 g carbo.; 23 mg sodium; 4.8 mg chol. Milk: 147 cal.; 2.2 g protein; 9.2 g fat; 16 g carbo.; 27 mg sodium; 5.7 mg chol.
COPYRIGHT 1991 Sunset Publishing Corp.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1991 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:recipes
Date:May 1, 1991
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