Melting chocolate on a bain marie

Bain marie

A bain marie is used as a method for heating or melting ingredients.  They are placed in a glass or metal heatproof bowl placed over a saucepan filled with a few centimetres of simmering water.  Tips:

  • The water shouldn’t touch the bowl sitting over it.

    Bain marie

    A centimetre or two of water

  • Make sure the bowl sits well on the saucepan so no steam is escaping from the sides (it burns).
  • The water should be simmering gently but not boiling.  If it boils or simmers too violently, take the saucepan temporarily off the heat till it simmers down a bit (hee hee.. before it starts a fight).
  • In the case of melting chocolate or gelatine (in a few spoons of water) you should stir with a spoon till you have it in a homogenous liquid form.
  • If you are whisking egg yolks and sugar over a bain marie, for a genoise sponge, keep a close eye on it to make sure it doesn’t overheat and overcook or you’ll get sweet scrambled eggs.
Genoise sponge on a bain marie

Genoise sponge on a bain marie – the bowl’s a bit too big for the saucepan so it’s slanted to one side and occasionally moved around.

Bain marie for Lamington's chocolate icing

Bain marie for Lamingtons chocolate icing


13 thoughts on “Bain marie”

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