One ounce is included in one square of baker’s chocolate. Six 1-ounce squares of baker’s chocolate make one cup.
Chocolate for Baking vs Bittersweet and Semisweet Chocolate
In contrast to the Hershey Bars available in the grocery store candy department, baking chocolate is unsweetened, meaning it is manufactured exclusively from cocoa beans that have been processed and pulverised. It lacks sugar and other additions, rendering it exceedingly bitter. Due to this, the majority of recipes that call for baking chocolate include sugar or other flavourings to enhance the final product. Sometimes, baking chocolate is referred to as unsweetened chocolate.
Bittersweet and semisweet chocolate are used in baking as well. However, unlike baking chocolate, they may contain sugar, vanilla, or lecithin for flavour or texture. Bittersweet and semisweet chocolate must contain at least 35% cacao by law in the United States, but there are no other requirements for the two varieties. Bittersweet chocolate is therefore not always less sweet than semisweet chocolate. Choose bittersweet or semisweet chocolate based on your own liking, as chocolate with a greater cacao % has a more robust flavour but may require additional sweeteners in the recipe.
Unsweetened chocolate or chocolate used for baking has the greatest cacao percentage, at 100%. Bittersweet and semisweet flavours hover between 60 and 80 percent. Milk chocolate contains additional milk solids and sugar, whereas dark chocolate typically contains at least 70% cacao and is suitable for consumption. The only ingredients in white chocolate are cocoa butter and sugar. It’s delicious when caramelised or combined with salt and almonds.
Variations of Baking Chocolate
Baking chocolate is available in numerous forms, each of which has distinct benefits.
Bars are convenient and may be cut into smaller pieces for melting or mixing into cookie dough.
Blocks are preferable for large quantities of food because they are more difficult to chop but less expensive per pound. Using a serrated knife, one can scrape slices from the edge that can then be burned or shattered.
The utility of chocolate chips is less than one may assume. Infrequently, the chemicals that retain the shape of the chips affect the flavour and texture of chocolate in unexpected ways. Brands with fewer additives and greater quality can mitigate this effect. Either way, they are tasty as a standalone snack.
Cocoa powder, like baking chocolate, is often unsweetened. It can be used as a tasty substitute for flour when coating baking pans, and it works well in brownies and cakes. Dutch process cocoa powder is darker and less acidic than other methods. It’s useful for adorning desserts, but not typically for baking.
Ideal for melting into frostings and glazes are wafers.
Alternating with Baking Chocolate
If you don’t have the necessary baking chocolate for a recipe, you have several options:
1 ounce of unsweetened baking chocolate can be replaced with 3 tablespoons of unsweetened cocoa powder and 1 tablespoon of butter, margarine, or shortening.
An ounce of baking chocolate is 3 tablespoons of Dutch-process cocoa powder plus 1 tablespoon of shortening, butter, or oil.
3 ounces of semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chips may be substituted for 1 ounce of baking chocolate, but the amount of sugar and shortening in the recipe must be reduced by 1/3 cup and 1 tablespoon, respectively.
How to Keep Baking Chocolate Fresh
After being opened, chocolate does not need to be refrigerated but should be stored in a cool, dark, and dry area. While chocolate exposed to dampness may acquire lighter areas of colour, this does not alter its flavour. For optimal results, cover opened chocolate with plastic wrap to maintain its freshness.