This recipe for chocolate taffy reminds us of long-ago October nights spent rushing from house to house untwisting the paper ends of delicious candy chews. For lots of deep, rich taste in addition to chewiness, we melt the best dark chocolate, mix it with corn syrup, vanilla, and salt, and roll it out like pie dough. Easy! It’s also what we use to make dark chocolate flowers. Handmade flowers allow you to create a sophisticated look for dessert plates, one that matches all the hard work and love you put into them.–Susan Heeger and Susie Norris
LC Tootsie Roll Note
Lest you think these are Tootsie Rolls gone to finishing school, allow us to disabuse you of that notion. (Well, okay, maybe in a loosely inspired sort of way, yes, this dark chocolate taffy is what Tootsie Rolls can only aspire to be. But that’s where the similarity ends.) Sneak a rich, satiating, chocolate taffy fleur alongside mom’s morning espresso, perch it on her Mother’s Day cake, or leave it on her pillow. You wouldn’t do that with a Tootsie Roll, would you?
Dark Chocolate Taffy
- Quick Glance
- 1 H, 50 M
- 1 H, 50 M
- Makes about 40 flowers
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Recipe Testers Reviews
I tested this recipe to decorate a cake at school. I’ve done this sort of “plastic chocolate” in the past. I liked the recipe’s easy instructions for mixing the plastic. It says it takes 20 minutes, but after chopping the chocolate and measuring the few other ingredients, which took about 5 minutes, the rest was just letting the chocolate sit over the hot water to melt. Then a minute or 2 to combine. I didn’t use parchment and it didn’t stick. I simply scraped it up off my worktable with a bench scraper, as it wasn’t especially sticky. I’m not sure the rose-forming instructions are as clear if you’re just reading them, but if you’re forming the roses at the same time you’re reading the instructions, there’s a certain logic to it. The taffy is pretty flexible and it’s simple to reform. Making the roses neat just takes a little practice. Plus, I think they look prettier if they aren’t all exactly the same shape and size. I think the recipe would make about 40 little roses as it says. Admittedly I gave up when I had the dozen I needed. And I made some smaller and some larger. And I didn’t roll it all at once. After the first half dozen I actually didn’t roll the taffy at all. I just pinched off pieces and smeared them out into circles with an offset spatula and my fingers. The spatula is very handy for scraping the taffy petals from your work surface, too. I stored the leftovers in the refrigerator in one fat disk, wrapped in plastic. It got pretty hard, but it was easy to slice off a piece and carefully warm it in the microwave for just a few seconds until it was pliable enough to reknead. I used 8 or 9 petals for most of my roses and 12 for the bigger roses. Frankly, although the roses are pretty, they lack the elegance of fondant or marzipan. Maybe they’d be more classic with white chocolate. Or maybe I just need more practice. I prefer to use this taffy for funkier shapes, like teddy bears, frogs, and alligators. Great kid appeal. You can work it just like marzipan.
I made these with two children, ages 9 and 7, and we’ll make them again. Flattening the petals is a bit tricky, so we had a system with ice water for the metal spoon and to cool our fingertips. We were a messy bunch, but we had fun and made a beautiful large rose for a birthday present—a lovely presentation, very well received. Rolling the dough to 1/4 inch was too thick, so we rolled to about 1/8 inch. To cut, we used cordial glasses first, but the roses were bigger than we wanted. So we cleaned the top of a soy sauce bottle cap well, and used that. I used the cold metal spoon to flatten out the petals. Six chocolate petals make a pretty rosebud. This part is really, really fun. We used Lindt 85% dark chocolate and agave syrup instead of corn syrup because that was in the pantry. And, no they didn’t taste like Tootsie Rolls. They’re delicious.