This was one of the first steps in my chocolate apprenticeship with Chef Luis Robledo-Richards at the Four Seasons. He insisted that working with this simple form of tempered chocolate would build my foundation of chocolate work. I owe that man a debt of gratitude, and I continue to make and sell these nuts at Tout Sweet. This is an excellent entry to chocolate work, and you’ll end up with incredibly tasty little morsels that you can’t help but pop into your mouth.
- Yield: 7 CUPS (1.5 KG)
- 2 cups (650 g) cocoa powder
- 7 cups (1 kg) macadamia nuts
- 7 oz (200 g) 64% to 78% dark chocolate, preferably Valrhona
- ¼ cup (80 g) corn syrup
- 1 cup (200 g) granulated sugar
- Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside. Sift the cocoa powder into a shallow bowl and set aside. Place the macadamia nuts in a large mixing bowl.
- Break the dark chocolate into pieces and place it in a large stainless-steel or glass bowl. While you start the process of caramelizing your macadamias, melt the chocolate over a saucepan of simmering water. Alternatively, microwave on low power for about 2 minutes, or until melted. Keep the heat low and stir the chocolate every 20 seconds with a rubber spatula so that it doesn’t burn.
- Microwave the corn syrup for about 15 seconds so that it is more liquid, or warm it in a small saucepan over very low heat for 3 to 5 minutes. Pour the corn syrup over the nuts and use a rubber spatula to toss gently and coat the nuts. Sprinkle the sugar on top of the nuts; toss to evenly coat. The nuts should be lightly coated with a sandy texture. Think of the beaches in Maui. Pour them onto the parchment paper– lined baking sheet and spread evenly.
- Roast the nuts in the oven, tossing them every 3 to 5 minutes to achieve a golden brown caramel color all over each nut; roast for 10 to 15 minutes, or until the nuts are evenly golden. Meanwhile, clean and dry the bowl they were tossed in.
- Working with five to ten nuts at a time, drop them into the reserved cocoa powder. Take your time and don’t overfill the bowl, to avoid having the nuts stick together. Roll them in the cocoa powder and transfer to a sifter or finemesh sieve. Shake off the excess cocoa powder. You will have beautiful, individually coated nuts. I suggest sifting the nuts a second time through a colander to get rid of bigger clumps of powder and achieve an even coating of cocoa powder all over each nut.
- Store in an airtight container in a cool, dry place for up to 1 month.