Why You Should Consider Toasting White Chocolate

There seems to be a bit of a question about whether white chocolate is actually chocolate or not. This even extends beyond technicalities, as the pale treat is often written off by those who otherwise love chocolate. Despite the debate, white chocolate is a combination of cocoa butter, fat, milk or cream powder, sugar, and vanilla, per Martha Stewart, and the resulting flavor makes for some good candy. Still, it's not great candy, at least not in the minds of many, who tend to prefer dark or milk chocolate instead (via Carmela Pop).

According to Southern Living, white chocolate can also be hard to bake with and is sometimes seen as lacking in flavor. Its sweetness can be too sweet sometimes, not allowing for other flavors to come through. White chocolate is great in macadamia nut cookies and blondies, but there's got to be another way to take full advantage of it in the kitchen, right? 

Toasting brings out its essence

Toasting white chocolate in the oven will caramelize it and bring out the nutty flavors of the cocoa butter (via Southern Living). The method actually works better for white chocolate than dark because it has more sugar, which is necessary for caramelization. Midwest Living describes the flavor that develops as being like dark butterscotch or melted marshmallow. They suggest using it as the sweet element in banana bread, ice cream, and pancakes. David Lebovitz uses the toasted chocolate in macarons, scones, and sticky buns — options abound! 

So, how does one go about toasting white chocolate? First, get something high-quality; the better chocolates available are around 30% cocoa butter, according to David Lebovitz. Break the chocolate into pieces (if it isn't separated already), then spread them out uniformly on a baking sheet. Put the sheet into the oven at 250 degrees Fahrenheit to melt the chocolate. Take it out to stir and spread at 10-minute intervals, and cook for another 30 to 60 minutes. When the white chocolate becomes smooth and golden brown, remove it.

Once finished, you can use the liquid chocolate in a recipe or let it solidify as it loses heat, then store it in a cool, dry spot for later use. The chocolate can be stored for months, but if you end up reheating it by double boiling, be careful not to introduce water to it or the chocolate will seize and be unusable.