So I've read through this thread probably 5 or 6 times in the past few years, and most of the comments have been really helpful, but I don't remember if this question was asked specifically so I'm gonna go out on a limb and ask it and hopefully won't get heckled by everyone for asking something that's already been asked
I recently got the half dome molds that Norman Love uses with most of his chocolates to create that beautiful cocoa butter shine. I picked up some colored cocoa butter from Chef Rubber, and decided to try the swirl technique that's talked about at the beginning of this thread. I did the white first, then the green, making sure to chill each one before doing the next and let the mold come back to room temp before adding the dark chocolate. The chocolate was in temper when I filled the molds, but I noticed right away that they weren't releasing like they should, when the other mold I filled was releasing just fine. I filled the chocolates, capped them, and they still weren't releasing. I put them in the fridge, and only a few came out unscathed, after probably 2-3 hours of fridge time most of them had big chunks of mostly green that stayed in the mold.
I guess the question I'm posing is whether it was because I didn't buff first (felt like I didn't need to since the molds were brand new), the cocoa butter was too thick, or did I get a little over zealous and poured the mold too quickly and it wasn't quite in temper i.e. should I let it sit a minute or two before I start shelling (as the other mold I shelled came out just fine, though it didn't have any colored cocoa butter, it was just a plain dark shell. Note I did hand temper the batch of chocolate, and I do remember giving the molds a quite rinse because the packaging materials it was shipped in was sticking to the molds. So maybe it was a buffing issue? Dang, what a silly mistake!
The other question is pertaining to a quote made earlier in the thread about molds being like cast iron pans and needing a good seasoning. Since these are brand new molds should I shell them with a chocolate before attempting a colored cocoa butter design to "season" them, or do you all feel that would be unnecessary?
I'm obviously not going to give up trying this, but I was hoping someone would see the error in my ways, as I'm a bit perplexed.
Yeti, I'm not an expert with cocoa butter but have done lots of research as I was having similar issues when using a spray gun. One thing that you are doing that most likely caused your outcome was chilling after each colour. Derek Tu Tan Phoo (I'm sure I've spelled that wrong!) from the Montreal Callebaut Academy told me that chilling such a thin layer of cocoa butter will cause it to turn from Beta 5 crystals (the good ones) to Beta 6 crystals. This will give you release problems. Just let set at room temp.
If your other mold without cocoa butter released just fine - it wasn't your temper. And not buffing the molds wouldn't lead to such drastic release problems. I'm sure that's not it. Another thing you want to make sure of is that your cocoa butter is in temper. People do this in different ways. Some heat slightly and shake. What you want to be careful of is heating too high and melting out all of the beta 5 crystals. I heat and pour out all of my cocoa butter colours when I get them and temper the whole thing by tabling. I then pour it onto parchment and let set. I break it all up and store the chards. When I want to use colour I melt out what I need and use some chards as seed. I do it this way for a couple of reasons... I don't use a lot of coloured cocoa butter so by keeping it solid it will last longer. Also, the cocoa butters I use are the Natural ones made with natural colours. They are sensitive to light, heat etc. so don't like being melted out all of the time. Also, by ensuring that I have the cocoa butter in temper, I haven't had any more release problems. Yay! I should note that when I temper, I do it at the very high end of the temper range as I know that I will be encouraging more crystal growth by spreading it around with my finger.
I have never had an issue with new molds. I wouldn't say 'seasoning' them is necessary but it wouldn't hurt.
Good luck :)