Homemade chocolate speckles/ freckles/ nonpareils

Homemade chocolate speckles/ freckles on a white background.Have you heard of chocolate freckles? Maybe you know then as chocolate speckles? Or maybe nonpareils? Or maybe you are new to this brilliant concept – if so, welcome!

What are chocolate freckles/ speckles?

Basically, it’s a two-ingredient wonder:

  1. Chocolate (I prefer milk for these) – but make it GOOD QUALITY (when there are so few ingredients it makes a big difference!).
  2. Hundreds & thousands (you may know these as “sprinkles” but for me, sprinkles are what you might know as “jimmies” – the vocabulary of baking is complicated).

That’s it!

Rainbow nonpareils in a bowl.I LOVE these so much!

Hundreds & Thousands (aka sprinkles) on a supermarket shelf.(see! I’m not making it up!)

A brief history

I grew up eating these chocolates in Australia, made by Allen’s (owned by Nestlé). They are known as “Freckles” although a favourite chocolate store of mine, Haigh’s Chocolates (est. 1915 in Adelaide) makes their own (superior) version dubbed “Speckles” (yah, you don’t want to mess with Nestlé by calling your product the same as theirs like this small brand did, leaving them scrambling).

Homemade chocolate speckles/ freckles on a white background with a bowl of sprinklesSo what made me think of these all of a sudden? Well, mum texted me a photo of the Easter treats in Haigh’s last weekend, including these:

Haigh's Easter Speckle Eggs on the shelf.(yup, the colours on the 100s & 1000s are a little duller than the ones you see above because they use natural, no artificial colours now…)

All of a sudden I was desperately craving speckles/ freckles or whatever you want to call them. I always bring them home from Australia when I visit (eeerily, I was there this time last year – can you imagine? Right as the pandemic was starting to show its colours… seems surreal) but I have to ration them – which is not easy. I literally could eat a whole 200g bag in one sitting, they are SO good.

SO, since noone’s going to Australia anytime soon (sigh) and the mail takes SO long to arrive these days (double sigh), I decided to take matters into my own hands and make my own.

Making your own chocolate freckles/ speckles – what you need:

  1. The shape/ size. I did a little thinking and research and decided the best way to get the size/ shape of the chocolate would be mini cupcake liners (or “patty pans” as we call them in Australia), but the first few I tried, the chocolate stuck. I found some “greaseproof” mini cupcake liners though that did the trick (and I can re-use them for this purpose a few times I would think).
  2. The chocolate. It’s important, since there are so few ingredients, to use EXCELLENT quality chocolate. I used Callebaut Milk and while Haigh’s is their own bean-to-bar chocolate, this version of mine tasted remarkably close (the Haigh’s chocolate is really divine).
  3. A tray big enough for them to chill on. Or two. A couple of quarter sheet pans worked well here because they are small enough to fit in the fridge (as opposed to a larger tray).

Homemade chocolate speckles/ freckles on a white plate.“Tempering” the chocolate

Whilst the commercial freckles/ speckles are made using tempered chocolate, many home bakers might not want to take the time with this (it’s a bit fussy and needs a candy thermometer). An easy way to achieve a nicely smooth, alebit not “tempered” chocolate is to melt approximately 3/4 of the chocolate and then add the rest (this cools the temperature of the already melted chocolate, mimicking a small part of the tempering process but not fully). For this recipe, it works fine!

Yield: approx 50

Homemade chocolate speckles/ freckles

Homemade chocolate speckles/ freckles on a white background.

Easy homemade chocolate freckles/ speckles: Milk chocolate buds with rainbow sprinkles (hundreds & thousands)

Prep Time 15 minutes
Chill Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Difficulty Easy

Materials

  • approx 1 1/2 cups (300g) milk chocolate chips
  • 50 mini cupcake liners
  • hundreds & thousands (rainbow sprinkles)

Tools

  • microwave-safe bowl for melting chocolate OR metal bowl and small pot for stovetop method
  • 2 x quarter sheet pans
  • 1 teaspoon measure

Instructions

Melt the chocolate (stovetop method)

  1. Place 3/4 of the chocolate in a metal or ceramic bowl set over a pot of simmering water.
  2. When the chocolate is just melted, carefully remove the bowl from the simmering pot, add the remaining chocolate and continue to stir until all the chocolate is melted.

Melt the chocolate (microwave method)

  1. Place 3/4 of the chocolate in a microwave safe bowl and heat at 50-60% power in bursts of 1 minute until the chocolate is just about melted.
  2. Carefully remove the bowl from the microwave, add the remaining chocolate and continue to stir until all the chocolate is melted.

Assemble the speckles/ freckles

  1. Place approximately 50 cupcake liners on two quarter sheetpan trays.
  2. Pour approx. 1 teaspoon of chocolate in the bottom of each cupcake liner. Once you have filled a tray's worth, gently tap the tray to even the chocolate across the bottom of the cupcake liners.
  3. Sprinkle the top of the chocolate with the 100s & 1000s. Make sure to completely cover the chocolate.
  4. Chill in the fridge until the chocolate has hardened.
  5. Gently shake the loose sprinkles into a small dish (you can reuse these).
  6. Remove the chocolates from the cupcake liners and store in an airtight container in the fridge. These will last a long time in the fridge (in theory but you 'll most likely eat them up!)

Did you make this project?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Instagram

These might be known as speckles, freckles, rainbow chocolate buds or whatever but in my house these are known as “goners” (as in, make them and they’re gone because you eat them so fast LOL!)

Homemade freckle candies on a white serving place.What about you – what childhood treat are YOU craving these days?

 

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2 thoughts on “Homemade chocolate speckles/ freckles/ nonpareils”

  1. Well now, the wine cellar served as a wonderful chilling room for these trays, so….

    Naturally that got me thinking of a pairing. I settled on a Vin Doux Naturel from Roussillon, AOP Maury. Granted, not on everyone’s shelf. A naturally sweet dessert (or aperitif) wine, made mainly from Grenache varietals. Not super heavy, marries well with the milk chocolate.

    Though I suppose in honour of Australia, I should have gone with a Rutherglen Muscat. 😉

    Reply

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