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Ganache: Tips & Techniques


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#31 tan319

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Posted 29 April 2005 - 09:23 PM

great suggestion regarding invert sugar
either torreblanco or corvitto include a recipe to do it yourself invert
dont have the books on me but im sure someone here does
try me pm tomorrow
question for tan isnt corn syrup more similar to glucose

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corn syrup is often suggested as a sub for glucose.
I've never seen it suggested as a sub for invert sugar ala trimoline.
I'll bet nightscotsman has a recipe for invert sugar also.

BTW, everytime those Torreblanca/Corvitto books are mentioned I get shaky and try to figure out how I could possibly snaggle 400 dollars worth of books into my place.
Not to mention that 'Grand Livre' desserts book that throws another 225 on there...
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#32 nightscotsman

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Posted 30 April 2005 - 01:01 AM

I'm afraid that I don't have a recipe for making your own invert sugar, but I do know that corn syrup/glucose does not work as a substitue. For one thing corn syrup is about half as sweet as sucrose while invert sugar is about 50% sweeter. Also, invert sugar works as emulsifier in the ganache recipe while glucose would not. When it comes to something as finely ballanced as a ganache recipe, even corn syrup and glucose aren't interchangeable since corn syrup contains significantly more water.

As Akwa posted above, honey will work since it is an invert sugar, but even with the lightest clover honey, it will alter the flavor of your product. Which might not be a bad thing.

#33 scott123

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Posted 30 April 2005 - 02:46 AM

Yes, the difference in sweetness between corn syrup and invert sugar will need to be compensated for, but from a perspective of texture (and shelf life as well as humectation) corn syrup will fit the bill in this instance.

Invert sugar is 50/50 glucose/fructose.
Corn syrup, depending on the brand, is a combination of high fructose corn syrup and corn syrup, giving it some fructose, just not quite as much.

Honey, being a natural product, varies greatly in it's sugar content/fructose-glucose ratio. You could pick a brand with very similar fructose/glucose specs as corn syrup AND you'd still end up with the honey taste - which, imo, would be a bit of a stretch in raspberry ganache.

Here's one recipe for invert sugar using citric acid.

I've seen lemon juice used to invert sugar, but I wouldn't use it here. If you can't find citric acid, I'd go with cream of tartar, but double the amount. According to my calculations, cream of tartar has about half the strength of citric acid.

#34 tan319

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Posted 30 April 2005 - 10:48 AM

You can often find citric acid in a natural foods store, herbalist or candle making store.
Maybe GNC or those kinds of places too.
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#35 Mette

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Posted 01 May 2005 - 01:18 AM

Here's a pic of the final result

Posted Image

I'm a bit intimidated by posting pictures as an amateur amongst all you great pros, but I am very pleased with the result myself.....

In the end I used a subtle honey (which was what I had around), and the flavour compliments the raspberries very well. I'm not too worried about the shelf life, as they are only going to have a life of about two weeks. Next time, I think I'll try and concentrate the raspberry puree for a more intense flavour. The ganache was very tasty, and my husband (who has no class :-)) had the leftovers on a piece of crusty italian bread, pretending it was high class Nutella

Thanks for all the suggestions on subs for invert sugar. I'll try them out some other time.

Thanks again

/Mette

#36 Mette

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Posted 01 May 2005 - 01:21 AM

Is the Wybauw book available thru normal channels or just the usual suspects, ie: JBPrince, etc.?

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I got my book through my local Callebaut-pusher. It was quite pricy but I am enjoying it a lot. Don't know about the usual suspects - I'm in Denmark, where the usual suspects are a completely different lot.....

/Mette

#37 tan319

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Posted 01 May 2005 - 11:05 AM

Mette, those look awesome!
Nice work indeed.
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#38 Wendy DeBord

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Posted 01 May 2005 - 03:15 PM

I particularly like your choice of red to match your raspberry flavor and the speckled spray reminds me of real reaspberries. Very well done, I can taste them just from their looks.

#39 scott123

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Posted 02 May 2005 - 02:39 AM

Next time, I think I'll try and concentrate the raspberry puree for a more intense flavour.

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I find that if you cook raspberry puree down, the delicate flavor tends to dissipate rather than concentrate. Getting an intense flavor out of raspberries is tricky business. One trick that I do is to add a very tiny amount of lemon juice. Not enough to be noticed as lemon, though. It helps to give the raspberries a little oomph/brightness.

#40 FWED

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Posted 02 May 2005 - 10:08 AM

The finish on the chocolates is amazing. Would you mind telling us how you got it? Did you use any special cocoa butter colors and how did the speckles occur? Thanks.

Fred Rowe

#41 artisanbaker

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Posted 02 May 2005 - 12:59 PM

at my place of apprenticeship the chocolatier put a product that came in a small clear bottle into all our ganache recipes. the recipe included about one teaspoon of said "ingredient" and i could not detect any off flavor. i'm pretty sure it contained invertase. i can't remember where we got it from, maybe peter's?

#42 tan319

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Posted 02 May 2005 - 06:04 PM

Yes, the difference in sweetness between corn syrup and invert sugar will need to be compensated for, but from a perspective of texture (and shelf life as well as humectation) corn syrup will fit the bill in this instance.

Invert sugar is 50/50 glucose/fructose.
Corn syrup, depending on the brand, is a combination of high fructose corn syrup and corn syrup, giving it some fructose, just not quite as much.

Honey, being a natural product, varies greatly in it's sugar content/fructose-glucose ratio.  You could pick a brand with very similar fructose/glucose specs as corn syrup AND you'd still end up with the honey taste - which, imo, would be a bit of a stretch in raspberry ganache.

Here's one recipe for invert sugar using citric acid.

I've seen lemon juice used to invert sugar, but I wouldn't use it here.  If you can't find citric acid, I'd go with cream of tartar, but double the amount.  According to my calculations, cream of tartar has about half the strength of citric acid.

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I'm wondering if you can get a product not only as close to the trimoline you would buy from a supplier but as good a substitute gram for gram, from the recipe above.
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#43 Wendy DeBord

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Posted 02 May 2005 - 07:03 PM

The finish on the chocolates is amazing.  Would you mind telling us how you got it?  Did you use any special cocoa butter colors and how did the speckles occur?  Thanks.

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FWED, the thread I'm linking here covers how to get that look in your chocolates in detail.

#44 Fernwood

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Posted 03 May 2005 - 06:40 AM

Next time, I think I'll try and concentrate the raspberry puree for a more intense flavour.

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I find that if you cook raspberry puree down, the delicate flavor tends to dissipate rather than concentrate. Getting an intense flavor out of raspberries is tricky business. One trick that I do is to add a very tiny amount of lemon juice. Not enough to be noticed as lemon, though. It helps to give the raspberries a little oomph/brightness.

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I use the RL Beranbaum method (Cake Bible). Essentially, you thaw frozen raspberries in a strainer and press gently so that only clear juice is collected. This is boiled down to a concentrated syrup and then added back to the pureed pulp. If you don't cook the pulp, you get an intensely fruity puree, without that cooked, jammy flavor. Extra labor, but a good result and I freeze it successfully for months.

Now I'm thinking about the container I noticed in my freezer last week... there may be raspberry ganache in my future. :smile:

Edited to add: Your chocolates look amazing, Mette!

Fern

Edited by Fernwood, 03 May 2005 - 06:41 AM.


#45 MeDeMi

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Posted 11 August 2005 - 05:03 PM

Hmm... something strange has happened to my ganache. I have an order for a ganache cake (filled and frosted).

I made the ganache a few hours ago. After the chocolate was completely combined with the hot cream I put the warm ganache in an ice bath to cool it down and continued to stir it periodically. Once it was completely cooled I covered the bowl with plastic wrap and put it in the cooler. (I want it completely chilled because I'm going to lightly whip it so I can frost with it.) I just went and checked on it and it's beautiful to look at (nice and glossy), but when I took a spoonful I detected a grainy texture. The graininess instantaneously dissolves on my tongue, but it's definitely there when I first taste it. The only thing I did differently than normal was that I used Plugra butter instead of regular old American butter. (I had a chunk sitting in the cooler and I couldn't resist the temptation.) Could that have made a difference? Do you think it will incorporate when I whip it? Or, because the cake will be served at room temp will it not be noticeable?

Has anyone else had this problem with ganache?

FYI... I just recently opened my own shop so this whole post may be paranoia driven because now it's my name on the product and not someone else's! I have, however, found that suddenly I'm having trouble making the simplest things that I've made 1000's of times! (You don't even want to hear my caramel woes!) It's really frustrating! :angry:
"Health food may be good for the conscience but Oreos taste a hell of a lot better." Robert Redford

#46 Terrasanct

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Posted 11 August 2005 - 05:47 PM

Apparently it's a common problem. Here's something I found:

After the cream is poured over the chocolate to melt the cocoa
butter, the mixture is set aside to warm undisturbed for a minute and then
stirred in a slow, circular motion. Steady agitation is essential in reducing the
fat to tiny droplets. Care must be taken to resist excessive beating, which
can bring the temperature of the fat below 90°F too quickly, producing
ganache with a grainy texture.

REPAIRING A BROKEN OR GRAINY GANACHE

If your ganache looks broken or feels grainy, there is still hope for it. To repair
a broken ganache, divide it in half. Warm one half over a double boiler to a
temperature of 130°F. The fat will melt and pool at this temperature, making
the mixture thinner. Cool the remaining ganache to 60°F by stirring it over a
bowl of ice. The fat in this portion will begin to solidify, causing the ganache
to thicken.
When both halves have reached the desired temperatures, slowly
stream the hot ganache into the cold and stir to combine. You can use a
food processor for this step by placing the cool ganache into the bowl of the
food processor, turning on the machine, and streaming in the warm ganache.
The mixture will not fall below 90°F during this procedure, so there is no risk
of creating a grainy texture. Combining the two portions of ganache in this
way averages the temperature into the optimal working range, and the fat
droplets will be suspended evenly in the water.



#47 rraaflaub

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Posted 11 August 2005 - 08:52 PM

Hmm... something strange has happened to my ganache.  I have an order for a ganache cake (filled and frosted).

I made the ganache a few hours ago.  After the chocolate was completely combined with the hot cream I put the warm ganache in an ice bath to cool it down and continued to stir it periodically.  Once it was completely cooled I covered the bowl with plastic wrap and put it in the cooler.  (I want it completely chilled because I'm going to lightly whip it so I can frost with it.)  I just went and checked on it and it's beautiful to look at (nice and glossy), but when I took a spoonful I detected a grainy texture.  The graininess instantaneously dissolves on my tongue, but it's definitely there when I first taste it.  The only thing I did differently than normal was that I used Plugra butter instead of regular old American butter.  (I had a chunk sitting in the cooler and I couldn't resist the temptation.)  Could that have made a difference?  Do you think it will incorporate when I whip it?  Or, because the cake will be served at room temp will it not be noticeable?

Has anyone else had this problem with ganache?

FYI... I just recently opened my own shop so this whole post may be paranoia driven because now it's my name on the product and not someone else's!  I have, however, found that suddenly I'm having trouble making the simplest things that I've made 1000's of times!  (You don't even want to hear my caramel woes!)  It's really frustrating!  :angry:

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Terrasanct is probably right about what happened with your ganache...just a note though; cold ganaches also cannot take much agitation without gentle re-warming. A subsequently broken ganache would look grainy as well. It doesn't sound like this was your problem, but something to remember. Also, while many cringe at the idea of re-emulsifying a ganache with either a robotcoupe (a non-garlicy one) or a stick blender...it works very well if there is no concern about any reduction in shelf life from incorporating some extra air.
Randall Raaflaub, chocolatier
rr chocolats

#48 MeDeMi

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Posted 12 August 2005 - 07:36 AM

Thanks for the suggestions. I hadn't read the replies until just now, so what I did was take the ganache out of the cooler and let it sit at room temp overnight. I was hoping that the graininess would dissolve. Last night I noticed after it had been out of the cooler for about half an hour that the ganache that had splashed up on the sides of the bowl had warmed up and it wasn't grainy. I was hoping that would happen to the whole thing. When I checked it this morning it was still grainy. So, I re-melted the whole thing. I wish I'd read these replies first!!! Now I've got a big huge oil slick on top and chocolate underneath. It's even worse! I don't need it until tomorrow, so worse comes to worse I just re-make it but I hate to waste this much chocolate and cream! I'm going to keep gently stirring it as it cools to see if maybe magically it comes together, but I don't have high hopes. If it does come together will it be noticeable in the finished cake? Since the cake is being filled and frosted with it it will be very noticeable if something is wrong with the ganache. Should I just cut my losses and make it new? I don't want to lose this customer.
"Health food may be good for the conscience but Oreos taste a hell of a lot better." Robert Redford

#49 rraaflaub

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Posted 12 August 2005 - 08:05 AM

Thanks for the suggestions.  I hadn't read the replies until just now, so what I did was take the ganache out of the cooler and let it sit at room temp overnight.  I was hoping that the graininess would dissolve.  Last night I noticed after it had been out of the cooler for about half an hour that the ganache that had splashed up on the sides of the bowl had warmed up and it wasn't grainy.  I was hoping that would happen to the whole thing.  When I checked it this  morning it was still grainy.  So, I re-melted the whole thing.  I wish I'd read these replies first!!!  Now I've got a big huge oil slick on top and chocolate underneath.  It's even worse!  I don't need it until tomorrow, so worse comes to worse I just re-make it but I hate to waste this much chocolate and cream!  I'm going to keep gently stirring it as it cools to see if maybe magically it comes together, but I don't have high hopes.  If it does come together will it be noticeable in the finished cake?  Since the cake is being filled and frosted with it it will be very noticeable if something is wrong with the ganache.  Should I just cut my losses and make it new?  I don't want to lose this customer.

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Try, with the ganache warmed up, using the stick blender/robotcoupe/mixer. If it is simply separated, it will sound sloshy at first...when it comes back together sufficiently, it will get smooth and quiet. If in doubt...try sticking a small sample in the cooler for a little while to see if it goes grainy. Good luck!
Randall Raaflaub, chocolatier
rr chocolats

#50 MeDeMi

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Posted 12 August 2005 - 11:19 AM

Here's what I've done so far... I'm in the process of moving and a lot of my stuff is in a box somewhere so I can't get my hands on a robot coupe or my stick blender. I put the ganache in a bowl and periodically stirred it with a rubber spatula until it was room temp. I then put it in the mixer on "stir" with the paddle and have been slowly stirring it. Within five minutes it came together-nice and glossy and perfectly smooth. It's been going for about an hour and a half. I took your advice, rraaflaub, and stuck a small amount in the cooler because I figured there was no point in trying to fix it if it was going to break again once I stuck it in the cooler. Anyway, the small amount I stuck in the cooler has set up very firm and it's completely smooth! So... so far so good. Thanks everybody for your help.
"Health food may be good for the conscience but Oreos taste a hell of a lot better." Robert Redford

#51 KarenS

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Posted 13 August 2005 - 01:18 AM

Ganache is not an easy thing to make or understand. I do not advise chilling over ice or refrigerating. That alone could make it grainy. Ganache is best when allowed to set at room temp. If you must cool it -be gentle, and for not too long of a time. Chocolate does not function well when cold.

#52 JustKay

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Posted 14 August 2005 - 04:25 AM

Ganache is not an easy thing to make or understand. I do not advise chilling over ice or refrigerating. That alone could make it grainy. Ganache is best when allowed to set at room temp. If you must cool it -be gentle, and for not too long of a time. Chocolate does not function well when cold.

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Actually, when you get the hang of it it's pretty easy. I use ganache on many of my cakes and customers actually prefer this to buttercream frosting/filling.

The brand of chocolate used can also result in a grainy ganache.

And like KarenS, I let my ganache set slowly at room temperature.

If all your corrective measures fail, run it through a strainer. This is what I do too if I get too many air bubbles in my ganache (when not making whipped ganache).

#53 MeDeMi

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Posted 14 August 2005 - 10:47 AM

Thanks again, everyone. It's funny because I've been doing this for years and I've never had as many problems as I've been having lately! The simplest things have been bombing, and I can only attribute it to stress. I have made ganache a million times-I've made it in the microwave for goodness sakes! In fifteen years I've made ONE ganache that broke. (I remember it because it happened a few months ago and I was so shocked because it had never happened to me before!) But that ganache broke while I was whipping it, not while I was cooling it down. (The stupid phone kept ringing and I had to keep turning off the mixer and coming back to it and I just got distracted. Excuses, excuses! Ha ha!) Honestly, I think because it's my shop now I desperately want everything to be perfect and I'm going a bit overboard on the anal retentiveness! Anyway, it turned out beautiful. I have a lovely picture of the finished cake, but I don't know how to post pictures otherwise I'd post it here!
"Health food may be good for the conscience but Oreos taste a hell of a lot better." Robert Redford

#54 Wendy DeBord

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Posted 19 August 2005 - 06:33 AM

I was reading in "Fine Chocolates Great Experience" by Jean-Pierre Wybauw yesterday and ran across his take on this issue.

"Curdling/ Is the seperation of an emulsion from two liquid substances that do not form a solution. The most typical example is oil and water (mayonnaise).

Causes:

Incorrect balance of ingredients

Incorrect mixing temperatures

Chocolate PH too low

Remedies: (depending on recipe)

Homogenise with blender

Add emulisfier (in some cases a little lecithin helps)

Add a thickener

Allow to solidify slightly, then stir vigorously (possibly in beater/mixer)."




Personally, I use my stick blender to make ganches and temper chocolate....... For years I used Flechlin brand chocolate, cream, butter and sugar in my ganches. Then at a different job, all of the sudden my ganche recipe/formula no longer worked. I had a different chocolate and a different dairy. I finally experienced what others described as a broken ganche.........until then I couldn't even imagine how a ganche could be broken.

I had to change the formula I was using and eliminate the extra butter and sugar. Plus I must use my stick blender to get a good emulsion. I can't tell you exactly what's different between my last chocolate and my new brand (or with my cream), but some factor has changed and I had to adjust.

#55 Samaki

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Posted 06 November 2005 - 10:13 PM

Hi everyone, it's been ages since I've visited - I took time off to have a baby, but am now back at work. I've been playing around with ganache methods and have discovered that I get the best flavour and smoothest emulsion if I stir the cold cream and solid chocolate together over gentle heat, until the chocolate is almost, but not quite finished melting. Is there any reason, from a professional standpoint, not to do this? Will it affect shelf-life in any way? The cream I'm using is ultrapasteurized, if that's important.

#56 Wendy DeBord

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Posted 06 November 2005 - 10:38 PM

I'm hooked on using my emursion blender for ganches and tempering chocolate.

I do see a difference in using cooler temp. when making a ganche. It makes for a thicker/denser emulsion (not likely to break). That's why I use a stick blender, it does the work for me sooner then heat alone.

#57 chiantiglace

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Posted 06 November 2005 - 10:42 PM

Samaki, if you search back ages ago we have had several ganache discussions + cream discussions. There has been so much that has been said/argued you may be better off looking for the old discussions than having some select points brought back up.

I don't beleive anyone "cracked" why any method was better than another. But I think we accomplished the fact that everyone is different and can adjust to different procedures better than others.

A few of the topics discussed over all was:
Boiling the cream and pouring it over the chocolate; wisking together smoothe
Boiling the cream and pouring the chocolate in the pan with the cream; whisking smooth
Boiling the cream and melting the chocolate; mix together
Not boiling the cream, only bringing it to a simmer just before boil and following 1 of the top procedures
Infusing Cream with various things for flavored ganache
Which cream is more appropriate for ganache, U.P. or just Pastuerized; also usage of whole milk, half and half, and butter.
The fact that some people were noticing there ganache breaking when melting the chocolate in addition to bringing the cream to a boil
The difference between hard medium and soft ganache and their applications
How to keep ganache from becomming grainy

Alot of these were discussed in 2 or 3 threads. If you search for ganache or heavy cream hopefully should come up with some. I appologize for not searching for you but the search engine for eGullet, to me, is not very good at all. If I search for ganache I do not get a single thread titled with the word ganache in it.
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#58 sanrensho

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Posted 06 November 2005 - 11:33 PM

If I search for ganache I do not get a single thread titled with the word ganache in it.


Does this work?

http://forums.egulle...ighlite=ganache
Baker of "impaired" cakes...

#59 chiantiglace

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Posted 06 November 2005 - 11:47 PM

thanks for posting that. That gave me an edge to figure out the search engine. I use to just put in a word an search, I didnt know there was a sub page to adjust the search settings.
Dean Anthony Anderson
"If all you have to eat is an egg, you had better know how to cook it properly" ~ Herve This
Pastry Chef: One If By Land Two If By Sea

#60 sanrensho

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Posted 06 November 2005 - 11:54 PM

thanks for posting that.  That gave me an edge to figure out the search engine.  I use to just put in a word an search, I didnt know there was a sub page to adjust the search settings.

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FYI, I used "All Forums" and "Search Title Only" with the keyword. The regular search bar used to drive me crazy until I started using the Search page.
Baker of "impaired" cakes...