chocolate coated honeycomb bar

(october 2010)

Honey Money Days is an annual fund raiser for Animals Asia's rescued moon bears. Keeping a couple of hundred rescued bears happy and in tip top health costs a bit of cash so visit the site and see if you can help.

The kids at the Adelaide Showground Farmers Market did their bit and helped cook up this recipe, then sold their honeycomb for a gold coin donation at the October (2010) market.

Extra big thanks to Lilly Thai who not only sold a ton of honeycomb but also emptied her own piggy bank for the bears, nice!

chocolate coated honeycomb bar

makes approx 500 g

This one needs adult supervision because boiling sugar syrup can be dangerous to little hands! You will need a candy thermometer for this recipe (available from $10 at shops that sell cooking equipment).

325 g sugar
175 g Australian honey
60 ml water
125 g glucose
15 g bi-carb soda

chocolate coating
400 g fair trade couverture chocolate (the real stuff! with minimum 32% coco butter)

Prepare a 30 mm deep tray by lining it with non-stick baking paper and lightly coat with cooking spray. Cut the paper long and wide to line the sides of the tray.

Put everything except bi-carb in a pot and boil until the temperature reaches 136°C to 140°C. Take pot off heat and immediately sprinkle in bi-carb and mix through.

Pour mix into prepared tray and leave at room temp to set (it will take around 30 mins). Break into the size you like or use a knife dipped into boiling water to cut into bars if you want them perfect (but I never bother).

You don't have to temper the chocolate to coat the bars, you can just melt it in a microwave or over a double boiler, but tempering will give your final product a nice snap when you bite into it and a great gloss. It also prevents the chocolate from blooming (going powdery/white over time).

Don't forget to buy fair trade chocolate, some of the chocolate producers treat their workers (some of them kids) pretty nasty!

Grate or chop the chocolate so it will melt easily. Place two thirds in the top pan of a double boiler. Be sure no liquid gets into the chocolate, this will cause clumping or seizing. Heat over hot, not boiling, water until the chocolate reaches 43°C to 46°C. It's really important not to exceed this temperature as chocolate is very sensitive to heat; so a good thermometer is useful here.

Remove the top pan of the double boiler and allow it cool to 35°C to 38°C. Then add the remaining chocolate and stir until it's melted. If you lose too much heat at this stage and not all the chocolate melts, then return the bowl briefly to the double boiler.

Once all the remaining chocolate is melted, use a spatula to smear over the honeycomb to coat and allow chocolate to set.