Chocolate candy molds can lend your homemade confections a festive, distinctive, unique and professional air, so why not try them? They're also inexpensive and easy to use, if you follow a few tips.
You may not be aware of the great variety of molds available. There are molds for:
Special events: birthday, graduation, wedding, anniversary, babies, bazaars, etc.
Holidays: New Year's, Valentine's Day, Easter, Mother's Day, Father's Day, Fourth of July, Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah, etc.
Themes: movies, animals, flowers and fruit, jobs (business cards!), letters and numbers, organizations, patriotism, nautical, seasonal, sports, religious, zodiac, greeting cards, international, landmarks, music, military, transportation, western, etc.
Tips for buying molds:
Look for strong plastic with deep intricate designs, you'll be surprised at the difference in results from more detailed molds. If you buy molds for hard candy, they'll be strong enough for anything. Dishwasher-proof is not necessary, you'll read why later.
Tips for using molds:
Fill each mold slowly with a squeeze bottle, spoon, or by pouring chocolate from a measuring cup. Paintbrushes can be used for candies with layers of different colors, just let each layer chill and firm before applying the next.
Use a palate knife or spatula to scrape off any excess chocolate into a clean bowl. This chocolate can be gently warmed and reused.
To remove bubbles from the molded candy, you can hold both sides of the chocolate candy mold firmly in two hands and tap it gently on your table or counter.
To remove the candy from the mold, turn it upside down over a cloth or sheet of waxed paper and either gently tap it on the table or kitchen counter, or invert the entire mold and twist it very gently to release the chocolates.
Chocolates can be quick chilled, in order to remove them quickly from the mold and make way for more candy production. To do this, place them in the freezer for 5 to 10 minutes, until there is condensation or frost evenly on the bottom of your mold. Then you can take them out of the freezer, remove them from the mold as above, and let them finish cooling at room temperature.
Tips for cleaning molds:
The molds should never be washed because it is easy to leave soap residue that affects the flavor of the chocolates. Once the remnants of chocolate in the mold have completely cooled, the chocolate will flake off by wiping with a soft, dry cotton cloth (polyester will leave tiny fibers on the plastic). A light film of cocoa butter will remain which is polished with the cotton cloth, making your next batch of chocolates even shinier than the previous batch.
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