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Couverture: Sources, Favorites, Storage, Troubleshooting

Chocolate

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#31 Kerry Beal

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Posted 21 October 2007 - 03:19 PM

For dark I like Callebaut 815NV which is bittersweet. I find the 811 too sweet for my taste.

Milk - I get 665NV - very smooth and caramelly.

White - Excellent WNV - also very smooth and caramelly.

If I don't have access to the Callebaut I find the chocolate sold under the Presidents Choice label very acceptable (but I notice the bars just got a whole lot smaller). The chocolate sold in big bars in Walmart is also excellent.

#32 prairiegirl

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Posted 21 October 2007 - 07:05 PM

I use a whole assortment of chocolate. I pair different chocolate with the fillings I use. For example I like to use Valrhona Caraibe as part of the ganach for a coffee filling. Candied orange peels I use Valrhona Manjari. I will use Cocoa barry 64% Quayaquil for thin shell moulding, as well as for dipping nuts. I will use El-Rey and Vintage Plantations also. I tend to like Cocoa Barry better than Callebaut, but I also really like Callebaut 665 milk because it does taste very good and I like the colour contrast as it is a light milk chocolate. i have many different chocolate brands on hand because I use them in my chocolate tasting presentations and my clientele also likes the variety I use. Callebaut and Cocoa Barry have a large single origin line of chocolate out on the market, but I go with the small batch producers because they don't deodorize the cocoa butter and they are purchasing some of the best beans on the planet! So when I do a tasting the flavours really pop out and people understand why some chocolate is $3 and why others are $10

#33 David J.

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Posted 21 October 2007 - 09:48 PM

I use Callebaut 811NV for my dark, but I may give the 815NV or even 835NV a try. Most of these basic formulas are available in varying viscosities. The basic taste is the same, but the workability for different techiques varies. If you find a letter in the prefix it means a thicker than normal batch: A-1%, B-2%, C-3% less cocoa butter, and so on. If you get a number in the prefix that means that percentage more: 1-1%, 2-2%, etc. If you like a particular brand but find it too thick you can always add cocoa butter to decrease the viscosity.

I also use Callebaut for Milk and White, but that has been through inertia and I'll probably try other brands when what I have on hand runs out.

#34 tammylc

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Posted 22 October 2007 - 07:24 AM

I was using E. Guittard up until very recently, but i've just switched over to Michel Cluizel. It has great flavor and is very easy to work with. Expensive, but I'm ordering it directly from the distributor, so that puts it within the realm of possibility.

I liked the Guittard, it tempered nicely and had good viscosity, but the 72% had a bit of a smoky bitter finish that some of my tasters noticed and didn't like. The Cluizel has always been my favorite, but was financially out of reach until i figured out to order it direct.

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#35 rmillman

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Posted 22 October 2007 - 09:20 AM

I am not in the industry so I do not need to control my costs as much as those in the industry do. As such, I spend the EXTRA and go for Amedei. Each has a unique flavor profile and they temper and blend incredibly well.

The Chuao is my favorite of all time and the "9" is also really special.

Amedei “9” (Dark) 75%
Amedei Toscano Black (Dark) 70%
Amedei Chuao (Dark)

#36 ejw50

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Posted 23 October 2007 - 06:06 PM

Looking at his book, Frederic Bau uses all sorts of chocolates for the centers. But for coating, he recommends something like Caraque (55-60%). His reasoning is that he is looking for a coating that works with all centers, and some centers do not benefit from "strong coatings".

#37 Mikeb19

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Posted 25 October 2007 - 01:22 AM

My favourites are the Callebaut Origine (single origin) chocolates. The flavours are amazing, and I haven't had any problems working with them.

http://www.callebaut.com/en/150

Edited by Mikeb19, 25 October 2007 - 01:23 AM.


#38 dejaq

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Posted 26 October 2007 - 11:21 AM

This critique is based on over twenty five years of fooling around with couverture.
Disclaimer, I am honest, brutally honest when it comes to taste and performance, if I insult anyone that favors with something below or disagrees with my eval, remember it’s all subjective.


In my experience Callebaut make a fine chocolate, but it’s regarded more as a workhorse AP type these days particularly the 60/40 than anything else with exception to their new Origine varieties, I had an opportunity to try some of them at a recent P.W. seminar, they come to within 90% of the flavor profile of manjari and the java noted below.

Cacao Noel has been consigned to the doldrums of a generic class such as American Gourmet’s (Chef’s Club) private label, inexpensive, yet effective.

Valronha, hmmmm we used it exclusively at the President’s guest house the Maybach of couvertures, pricy cost no object, let’s through our food cost out the window.

Cocoa Barry-one of my ATF, consistent, high quality, their Quayaquil is richer and more
Pronounced with less acidity and astringency than for example DGF’s

Des Alpes- good, actually very good-the garnet is a bit mild in the flavor niche,
But their 70% is superior, I use it daily.

Patisfrance- actually very good, hard to get these days though, they have a Java Milk to die for with earthy, spicy, caramel notes-superior.

DGF- I love the absolute white, the milk is ok, and as noted the Quayaquil is on the acidic Side, for you master blender choco wizards out there this is a nice one to throw into your “custom blend mix”

Chocovic-makes a superior 70% and small change dark, intense, yet with subtle notes in the finish, it’s what I refer to as a balanced couverture, carried locally by Metropolitan.

El Rey-deleterious results, poor sheen. Schokinag Chocolate is unfortunately in the same boat, these guys don’t know how to make chocolate in MHO.

Felchlin-the Lucerne 44% will not function with a quick mousse, it seizes. Flavor profile is weak, the matterhorn , is decent, the Edelweiss, is a bit sweet, their Arriba is good though, if at a premium.

#39 Qui

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Posted 01 December 2007 - 08:05 PM

Thanks for the evaluation! I plan on doing a taste and performance test on different couverture after the holiday, should be a fun project... maybe I will have more question for you when the time comes...




This critique is based on over twenty five years of fooling around with couverture.
Disclaimer, I am honest, brutally honest when it comes to taste and performance, if I insult anyone that favors with something below or disagrees with my eval, remember it’s all subjective.


In my experience Callebaut make a fine chocolate, but it’s regarded more as a workhorse AP type these days particularly the 60/40 than anything else with exception to their new Origine varieties, I had an opportunity to try some of them at a recent P.W. seminar, they come to within 90% of the flavor profile of manjari and the java noted below.

Cacao Noel has been consigned to the doldrums of a generic class such as American Gourmet’s (Chef’s Club) private label, inexpensive, yet effective.

Valronha, hmmmm we used it exclusively at the President’s guest house the Maybach of couvertures, pricy cost no object, let’s through our food cost out the window.

Cocoa Barry-one of my ATF, consistent, high quality, their Quayaquil is richer and more
Pronounced with less acidity and astringency than for example DGF’s

Des Alpes- good, actually very good-the garnet is a bit mild in the flavor niche,
But their 70% is superior, I use it daily.

Patisfrance- actually very good, hard to get these days though, they have a Java Milk to die for with earthy, spicy, caramel notes-superior.

DGF- I love the absolute white, the milk is ok, and as noted the Quayaquil is on the acidic Side, for you master blender choco wizards out there this is a nice one to throw into your  “custom blend mix”

Chocovic-makes a superior 70% and small change dark, intense, yet with subtle notes in the finish, it’s what I refer to as a balanced couverture, carried locally by Metropolitan.

El Rey-deleterious results, poor sheen. Schokinag Chocolate is unfortunately in the same boat, these guys don’t know how to make chocolate in MHO.

Felchlin-the Lucerne 44% will not function with a quick mousse, it seizes. Flavor profile is weak, the matterhorn , is decent, the Edelweiss, is a bit sweet, their Arriba is good though, if at a premium.

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#40 merstar

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Posted 01 December 2007 - 09:18 PM

This critique is based on over twenty five years of fooling around with couverture.
Disclaimer, I am honest, brutally honest when it comes to taste and performance, if I insult anyone that favors with something below or disagrees with my eval, remember it’s all subjective.

Chocovic-makes a superior 70% and small change dark, intense, yet with subtle notes in the finish, it’s what I refer to as a balanced couverture, carried locally by Metropolitan.

View Post


I've only tried the Chocovic 71% Guaranda and 71% Ocumare. Loved the Guaranda, hated the Ocumare.
Is this the Chocovic 70% you're referring to?
http://www.amazon.co...e/dp/B000OZW7CA

Edited by merstar, 02 December 2007 - 12:10 AM.

There's nothing better than a good friend, except a good friend with CHOCOLATE.

#41 dejaq

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Posted 02 December 2007 - 02:04 PM

This critique is based on over twenty five years of fooling around with couverture.
Disclaimer, I am honest, brutally honest when it comes to taste and performance, if I insult anyone that favors with something below or disagrees with my eval, remember it’s all subjective.

Chocovic-makes a superior 70% and small change dark, intense, yet with subtle notes in the finish, it’s what I refer to as a balanced couverture, carried locally by Metropolitan.

View Post


I've only tried the Chocovic 71% Guaranda and 71% Ocumare. Loved the Guaranda, hated the Ocumare.
Is this the Chocovic 70% you're referring to?
http://www.amazon.co...e/dp/B000OZW7CA

View Post



the Guaranda which uses forastero arriba cocoa from Ecuador and yes is the best of the lot. Chocovic also make a blended Tobago which actually is a 64% that is spectacular, very nice full bodied flavor.

M

#42 merstar

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Posted 02 December 2007 - 03:08 PM

This critique is based on over twenty five years of fooling around with couverture.
Disclaimer, I am honest, brutally honest when it comes to taste and performance, if I insult anyone that favors with something below or disagrees with my eval, remember it’s all subjective.

Chocovic-makes a superior 70% and small change dark, intense, yet with subtle notes in the finish, it’s what I refer to as a balanced couverture, carried locally by Metropolitan.

View Post


I've only tried the Chocovic 71% Guaranda and 71% Ocumare. Loved the Guaranda, hated the Ocumare.
Is this the Chocovic 70% you're referring to?
http://www.amazon.co...e/dp/B000OZW7CA

View Post



the Guaranda which uses forastero arriba cocoa from Ecuador and yes is the best of the lot. Chocovic also make a blended Tobago which actually is a 64% that is spectacular, very nice full bodied flavor.

M

View Post


Thanks, I'll keep my eyes open for the Tobago.
There's nothing better than a good friend, except a good friend with CHOCOLATE.

#43 annachan

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Posted 04 December 2007 - 10:17 PM

For flavor, I love Weiss' milk chocolate with the caramel undertone. I also got the 64% to try out.

#44 golfgirl1227

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Posted 05 December 2007 - 09:02 AM

I use Callebaut D811 for pretty much everything- but I don't make chocolates or candies- just cakes/cookies/brownies/etc. It's what we used in my classes and it works for me now as well. I can get it in large quantities for a reasonable price and no shipping since it's somewhat local (used to be very local, then I moved).

I just saw that you were in KC- I get it from the Chocolate Store/Mid America Gourmet in Lenexa (or maybe OP, not really sure). Have you been there? They have so much chocolate, and it smells incredible in there!!!!

Edited by golfgirl1227, 05 December 2007 - 09:04 AM.


#45 QbanCrackr

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Posted 12 January 2010 - 01:30 PM

**I know this is a little on the long side, but I'm just looking for some good advice from those in the know about this subject. **

My family is opening up a bakery in the very very near future (should be opening before March). My mom and sister are taking care of the cupcakes/cakes and I'll occasionally help them with decorating or planning on the crazy cakes. My role there is mainly with desserts and chocolates. I've been messing around for a while now with truffles and have had great successes when i've let friends and family try my stuff.

I've been going back and forth debating about buying a chocolate tempering machine but as much as it'd probably help with time, I really want to be able to temper it myself by hand. I've done alot of reading on the subject and am more familiar with tempering in theory, but the only chocolate i've had is a block of Callebaut milk chocolate (i think the 811nv, had 2 or 3 droplets). I've tried tempering it 3-4 times and of those times about 2 times i had chocolates that weren't shiny (as i've heard that this comes from the chocolate setting up against something shiny i.e. mold or acetate) but had a definite snap to them and didnt melt immediately when you touched them.

With the opening coming soon, I know i'd be able to at least offer truffles in the beginning but i'd want to be able to move on to the molded chocolates and hand dipped variety, but my abilities with the tempering are very limited. I came across Qzina one night while searching for where to buy couverture in Miami, and being about an hour away from us, they might be able to help out.

I got their price list and catalog but to be honest, I see so much chocolate there I wouldn't know what'd be a good choice to practice with and eventually be able to use the same chocolate in the kitchen.

Even with all my reading, I guess it's so much information that it overwhelms me as I'm learning about this.

Correct me if i'm wrong--Couverture is a higher class of chocolate due to its higher cocoa butter content right? And when tempered you form the stable form v crystals which give the gloss & snap to the chocolate. Is this a whole other animal than chocolate used for lets say ganache and baking right? I'd assume you could use them for both but is the couverture more suited towards just covering chocolate?

Forgive me if the chocolate names look weird, I'm just copying & pasting from the price list.

I've heard that CACAO BARR FAVORITE MI-AMERE BITTER SWEET CHOCOLATE is a good chocolate, and they also have all these

Semi-Sweet Couverture
CACAO BARR FORCE NOIRE SEMI SWEET GANACHE CHOCOLATE PISTOLES 50%
CALLEBAUT 811 SELECT UNWRAPPED SEMI SWEET CHOCOLATE BLOCK 56%
CALLEBAUT 811NV SELECT SEMI SWEET CHOCOLATE CALLETS 56%
CALLEBAUT C811NV SELECT SEMI SWEET CHOCOLATE CALLETS 54.5%
CALLEBAUT D811NV SELECT SEMI SWEET CHOCOLATE BLOCK 54%

Bitter-Sweet Couverture
CACAO BARR GUAYAQUIL BITTER SWEET CHOCOLATE PISTOLES 64%
CACAO BARR CHOCOLAT AMER BITTER SWEET CHOCOLATE PISTOLES 60%
CALLEBAUT L6040NV INTENSE BITTER SWEET GANACHE CHOCOLATE BLOCK 60%
CALLEBAUT L6040NV INTENSE BITTER SWEET GANACHE CHOCOLATE

Milk Chocolate Couverture
CACAO BARR LACTEE SUPERIEURE MILK CHOCOLATE PISTOLES 37%
CACAO BARR LACTEE BARRY MILK CHOCOLATE PISTOLES 35%
CALLEBAUT 823NV SELECT UNWRAPPED MILK CHOCOLATE BLOCK 35%
CALLEBAUT C823NV SELECT MILK CHOCOLATE BLOCK 34%
CALLEBAUT C823NV SELECT MILK CHOCOLATE CALLETS 34%

White Chocolate Couverture
CACAO BARR BLANC SATIN WHITE CHOCOLATE PISTOLES 29%
CALLEBAUT CW2NV SELECT WHITE CHOCOLATE BLOCK 28%
CALLEBAUT CW2NV SELECT WHITE CHOCOLATE CALLETS 28%
CALLEBAUT CW2NV SELECT UNWRAPPED WHITE CHOCOLATE BLOCK 28%

Single Origin Couverture
CACAO BARR TANZANIE ORIGIN BITTER SWEET CHOCOLATE PISTOLES 75%
CACAO BARR ST. DOMINGUE ORIGIN BITTER SWEET CHOCOLATE PISTOLES 70%

We've been in contact from a Belcolade representative but I've never tried their stuff nor heard of them before last week, and Qzina also carries Valrhona but at about twice the price of cacao barry & callebaut. I've looked into Scharffenberger as well as E.Guittard but can't find anyone locally that sells the stuff (go figure).

In any case...help! I've got alot of ideas that I'd love to try out, and we've got the budget right now to buy chocolates to mess with recipes and whatnot but I just need some help on the couverture end.

Thanks to those who respond, and if you don't respond but just took the time to read the whole post, thanks to you too.

Danny
Danny

#46 RWood

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Posted 12 January 2010 - 02:19 PM

I've never been a fan of Callebaut for tempering. Always seems to thick. I've used it for baking and such, and it's fine.

Valrhona is always a great choice, but price wise, I tend to stay away. I use El Rey, and it's very easy to get directly from the company. Their service has always been great. Prices tend to fluctuate with them though.

I've started using the Orchid line from Albert Uster recently. My rep kept pushing it at my last job. I used it there, but not for chocolate work. I ordered the white chocolate and the 74%. The white tempered great, and was very fluid, probably along the lines of Valrhona. It has much more vanilla than I was used to with El Rey. The 74% has a great flavor, and I hope to make a center with it this week.
The price is really great, $38 for 11 lb box of callets. I've always used block chocolate for my Rev Delta, but these white callets melted so smoothly and quickly, I didn't have any problems with it. I may re-try some of the others when I need to order more dark chocolates.

#47 Kerry Beal

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Posted 12 January 2010 - 04:05 PM

I'd go for the Belcolade with those choices. Make sure it's the Belgian, not the US made stuff. Good everyday chocolate - excellent viscosity for molding.

#48 RichardJones

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Posted 12 January 2010 - 04:10 PM

Correct me if i'm wrong--Couverture is a higher class of chocolate due to its higher cocoa butter content right? And when tempered you form the stable form v crystals which give the gloss & snap to the chocolate. Is this a whole other animal than chocolate used for lets say ganache and baking right? I'd assume you could use them for both but is the couverture more suited towards just covering chocolate?


That's pretty much it. Couverture has just cocoa butter and no vegetable fats. Tempering generates the stable kind of crystals which may be type five, type vi or beta crystals and so on depending on whom you ask.

Generally a pâtissier uses couverture for all applications. They are often higher quality on the cocoa front (than candy style chocolates) and so have better flavour for the other applications, too. You would certainly want to use a good couverture for a ganache. In fact, many of the big names (e.g. Wybauw) even suggest using tempered couverture for ganaches.

Cacao Barry and Callebaut (part of the same organization, I believe) are a good bet, but as RWood points out, Callebaut is quite thick when tempered. It is perfectly workable, though, and the Callebaut I've used I have liked. Valrhona is superb and is the chocolate of choice for all the pâtissiers I know. But there are cheaper alternatives (see post above). Some Belgian chocolatiers only use Belcolade, for instance. My suggestion would be to get a selection and grade them for their taste and ease of working and go from there.

Re your tempering point, definitely worth learning to temper by hand IMHO. Moulded chocolates will have a different shine on them to dipped chocolates (without acetate) but dipped chocolates should still have a nice tempered sheen to them.

Do you feel you are ready to be setting up as a professional?

Edited by RichardJones, 12 January 2010 - 04:13 PM.

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#49 Kerry Beal

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Posted 12 January 2010 - 04:49 PM

Not all callebaut formulations are thick when tempered - they makes hundreds of different formulations - with various amounts of cocoa butter. Finding one of their formulations with 5 drops will give you a chocolate that is suitable for molding and relatively thin when in temper. The letter in front of the 811 indicates viscosity.

#50 ElsieD

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Posted 12 January 2010 - 04:55 PM

Kerry, where does one find Belcolade in Ontario?

#51 RichardJones

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Posted 12 January 2010 - 05:39 PM

Good point, Kerry. I was referring to their 'all-purpose' (3 drop) chocolate which is thicker than an equivalent from Valrhona.

As it happens, Callebaut do not advise using the 5 drop for moulding. I imagine it makes very fragile shells (which I suppose you might just be after for certain purposes...)

Danny, you may find the videos on the Callebaut website interesting. Here is one which discusses viscosity and you can link to others from there: http://www.callebaut.com/ocen/4842

R
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#52 QbanCrackr

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Posted 12 January 2010 - 05:40 PM

I've never been a fan of Callebaut for tempering. Always seems to thick. I've used it for baking and such, and it's fine.

Valrhona is always a great choice, but price wise, I tend to stay away. I use El Rey, and it's very easy to get directly from the company. Their service has always been great. Prices tend to fluctuate with them though.


My block of Milk that i bought was a 2/5 on the "drops" scale that they have on the wrapper...was nice for mousses and ganaches but when i tempered it it got real thick...i made a peanut butter square center that i dipped in it and because of the viscocity it actually gave me the thickness i was looking for (i think a thinner shell wouldn't have contrasted as good)

I'd go for the Belcolade with those choices. Make sure it's the Belgian, not the US made stuff. Good everyday chocolate - excellent viscosity for molding.

When we spoke with the rep, he told us they came out with a brand called Chocolante i think it is, and its made in the US.


Do you feel you are ready to be setting up as a professional?

I wouldn't say ready, but i feel alot more confident than when i first started getting into confections and desserts and whatnot. We definitely won't be offering our products at the price of established confectioners in Miami (i can only think of 3-4 that are notable down here) but eventually with enough practice maybe we can be considered in the same sentence =P

Once we're able to hire another helping hand for the evenings, I'll be able to devote more time into honing my newly found craft

I've got maybe 6-8 flavors for truffle centers that are solid (well solid flavor-wise, hehe) and everyone that has tried them has given real good reviews. I wouldn't want to venture into selling the molded chocolates yet until I'm able to consistently temper a batch of chocolate without having to stop and retemper the whole thing.

What I do know, and I welcome it with open arms, is that I'll probably never stop learning about it

Not all callebaut formulations are thick when tempered - they makes hundreds of different formulations - with various amounts of cocoa butter. Finding one of their formulations with 5 drops will give you a chocolate that is suitable for molding and relatively thin when in temper. The letter in front of the 811 indicates viscosity.

Thats what I read recently (well I bought the chocolate before knowing, and it had 2/5 drops on the wrapper
Danny

#53 Darienne

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Posted 12 January 2010 - 05:53 PM

Kerry, where does one find Belcolade in Ontario?

Peterborough. A local bulk food store, The Main Ingredient, carries Belcolade which Barbara and I use. He gets it from his rep obviously and I could probably ask him how you could find it where you are. You could PM me with your information. Etc.

I know that Kerry Beal uses Belcolade and thinks highly of it. I agree.

Also, when in Moab, I used Guittard chocolate which I had sent in from SLC. But then, you have to have everything sent in to Moab. :laugh: I could not even buy lollipop sticks there.
Darienne


learn, learn, learn...

Cheers & Chocolates

#54 RichardJones

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Posted 12 January 2010 - 05:57 PM

That will be why it was especially thick, Danny!

This link should send you to Callebaut's rating page with accompanied uses: http://www.callebaut...ry=0,inHoreca=0

R
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#55 Edward J

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Posted 12 January 2010 - 06:25 PM

How exactly are you melting your couverture, and how hot/humid is your kitchen? (Dishwaser running, steam kettles or stuff on the stove?)

You should be able to temper any decent couverture. Callebaut and Belcolada are fine, but methinks the Belgians have a monopoly on chocolate in N.America.

------DON'T GET ME WRONG!!! They make good stuff, but it's kind like saying that: "only _______ (insert name of a wine making country) makes the BEST wine"...You'd have every other wine making country after you begging to differ!!!

Me, I'm a Lindt user. The Swiss know a thing or two about chocolate as well. Lindt has corporate offices in Ontario and should have a distributer. I'm paying around CDN $14 a kg for the 70% single origin Ecuador here in Vancouver which is a very fine couverture and lower prices for 55%, 65%, milk and white.

Tempering machines are great for getting your hands into the game, but they only come in mini or maxi sizes. The mini size is fine for fooling around, and the maxi size is very expensive compared to what you could get for a real good melting/warming unit and wheel.

Hope this helps....

#56 Kerry Beal

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Posted 12 January 2010 - 06:29 PM

Kerry, where does one find Belcolade in Ontario?

Phone Puratos and they will tell you suppliers in your area.

#57 Kerry Beal

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Posted 12 January 2010 - 06:30 PM

How exactly are you melting your couverture, and how hot/humid is your kitchen? (Dishwaser running, steam kettles or stuff on the stove?)

You should be able to temper any decent couverture. Callebaut and Belcolada are fine, but methinks the Belgians have a monopoly on chocolate in N.America.

------DON'T GET ME WRONG!!! They make good stuff, but it's kind like saying that: "only _______ (insert name of a wine making country) makes the BEST wine"...You'd have every other wine making country after you begging to differ!!!

Me, I'm a Lindt user. The Swiss know a thing or two about chocolate as well. Lindt has corporate offices in Ontario and should have a distributer. I'm paying around CDN $14 a kg for the 70% single origin Ecuador here in Vancouver which is a very fine couverture and lower prices for 55%, 65%, milk and white.

Tempering machines are great for getting your hands into the game, but they only come in mini or maxi sizes. The mini size is fine for fooling around, and the maxi size is very expensive compared to what you could get for a real good melting/warming unit and wheel.

Hope this helps....

Lindt makes some lovely chocolate. Not sure where to get it in Miami.

#58 Edward J

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Posted 12 January 2010 - 07:10 PM

Qzina. www.qzina.com


They've got a location in Miami, as well as Vancouver, Toronto and Edmonton

#59 QbanCrackr

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Posted 12 January 2010 - 07:10 PM

When i temper my chocolate I seed it--but I've had some confusion about how to do it properly.

Once you seed it and it drops below a certain point, the chocolate won't melt anymore rigt?. Some people say to use chunks so you can take them out easily (and then remove the chocolate and refrigerate it i guess to stop the melting). I had my 1/3 of seed set aside and ran my knife through it real good i thought it'd all melt but i was left with abunch of little chunks that didn't melt (although they added good texture haha). But in any case, i think that the chocolate having the 2 drops on the wrapper meant it had less cocoa butter thus making it less fluid? *shrug*

In regards to the machines...I've seen a revolation 2 at about $500 that tempers 1-1/2# of chocolate and a mol d'art melter/warmer i think it was a 3kg rectantular for just over $700

The melter obviously has to be tempered by hand, whereas the temperer....well tempers (even though when you have temperature fluxuations or different chocolates that behave differently you have to play with the curves?)

I know in the future we'll have the budget to purchase 1 of the 2 machines. I'm hoping that when that time comes I'll be confident enough with my skills to just go up to the melter/warmer so that i can dump the molds and make less of a mess
Danny

#60 Edward J

Edward J
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Posted 12 January 2010 - 09:23 PM

In regards to the melter go whole hog and get the large melter--the kind that takes a full hotel pan size, not the 2/3 size or half size. The logic for this is as follows:

When molding, you have enough "elbow room" to pour, tip and scrape the molds properly.

When dipping, you can put in two 1/2 size pans, either of say, a 70% dark and a 55% dark or an organic or malitol, or you can put in one half pan of milk and one half pan of white, usually you can get away with the same common temp for these two types.

In other words, you have felexibility.

When money and circumstances allow, buy another full size melter. I have waterbath-type melters and have an optional wheel that fits on this melter, but I started off with just 1 melter with two pans

Be sure to order a full l pan and lid AND two optional half-size pans and lids when you buy such a melter. DO NOT buy any N. American or asian-made hotel pans, or lids. DO NOT let anyone tell you differently, and here's why:

The melter you buy is made in Europe, (HOLLAND OR ITALY) and Europe uses the "Euro-norm" system of hotel pans (called gastro-norm) This system has the same overall dimensions as the N. American, BUT has much more rounder, radiused corners in the pans. Thus, no N. American or asian hotel pans will fit properly into the melter. They might seem to fit, but they will not fit properly and will crack the plastic housing of the melter when wighted down.

Waay back in the late 1990's I bought the "Revolution 1" temperer. It is a good machine, and I've had it and use it on an almost daily basis for about 10 years now. It is a small machine and the capacity is small. It will not work properly when the RH% (relative humidity) is over 75%, but then again, no method of tempering will work when the humidity is this high. Consider making/setting up a separate room for your chocoalte work, an el-cheapo airconditioner will give you the right tempeature and lower your humidity.


Hope this helps





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