I have been using white chocolate to make candy at Christmastime for years. I recently found a recipe for PB & J Popcorn on https://www.somethingswanky.com/. I thought I would give it a try today.
Since I use white chocolate a lot, there were 2 differences, I thought I could make without incident. First, I use Chester’s Puffcorn for everything that has popcorn in the recipe. And, I almost always use a microwave without incident. Assuming the latter is okay was my mistake.
This recipe has two sets of directions – one for the peanut butter and one for the jelly. Using my microwave, I know how hot and how long to set it to melt chocolate – I have made 100’s of batches using this method.
I measured out my white chocolate, melted it as usual , then added the jelly. I don’t recall ever seeing whit chocolate, or any other chocolate dry up as fast as I stirred it. What went wrong? I dumped the thick, crumbly jelly-chocolate over the puffcorn and tried to mix it. I tried reheating it the mix, but all I got was little balls of soft, but not so sticky chocolate. Not one to give up so easily, I re-read the recipe and noted that the jelly and chocolate were mixed and melted together. Aha! I added the jelly and white chocolate to a bowl together and put in the microwave and low power and melted it together. Guess what? It still came out the same. I had to think about this.
I still had the ingredients measured out for the peanut butter portion. Using the tried and true method, I melted the white chocolate in the microwave along with the peanut butter and it came out smooth and coated the puffcorn exactly as I expected.
Because, I hate to waste anything, I decided to melt some plain white chocolate and coat the jelly part with plain white chocolate. I let this set up and eventually mixed the two parts to have when the grandkids came home from school. I put this aside to set as I contemplated the jelly problem.
I guess it was time to get some help from others who know more than this amateur candy maker. Searching the net, I came across the answer on a site called Bluprint.com – I know it doesn’t sound like a chocolate makers website.
They explain that after melting the chocolate, “stay away – far, far away from liquid.” Add any flavor, color, butter, shortening (or apparently Jelly) to the white chocolate before melting. Once it’s mixed incorrectly, it is best to start with a new batch. I am going to have to give this another try. Having used up my supply of white chocolate, that will be a project for another day.