Tempering refers to a process of heating and cooling chocolate to prepare it for dipping and enrobing. The tempering process ensures that the cocoa butter in chocolate hardens in a uniform crystal structure. Chocolate that is tempered has a smooth texture, a glossy shine and a pleasant “snap” when bitten or broken. Chocolate that is not tempered might be cloudy, gray, lumpy, and sticky at room temperature.
Tempering chocolate can be accomplished at home with a chocolate or instant-read thermometer and a double-boiler.