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Everything posted by thegreatdane

  1. By the way, my understanding about using glucose or corn syrup is to invert the sugar and keep it from crystallizing. One can invert sugar with an acid; lemon, vinegar, cream of tartar... But if one is caramelizing the syrup to make caramels, the crystallization doesn't seem to matter since you're going to add liquids to it afterwards. In other words, I don't see the reason to use glucose or corn syrup when making caramels. Anyone want to correct me? Please do if I'm wrong. It wouldn't be the first time, nor the last.
  2. Jim, I have the same experience; dark sugar syrup, but I don't use corn syrup or glucose. One thing I've done to lighten it is to move the dry sugar as much as possible by shaking the pan. This heats all the sugar at once and therefore it all melts quicker. I hope someone will chime in with a better answer for you. Tom
  3. Kerry, Thank you for starting this conversation about your adventures. And Mike, thank you, too, for your info and pictures. I like the idea of freeze-dried ganache. Kerry, keep us posted on what you do with that. We'll be salivating from afar. Also, I wonder if you've considered freeze-dried marshmallows. Could be fun! One thing I wonder about is how cost effective this is, considering the electricity and volume of goods one can make. Thanks, Tom
  4. Kerry, what's the company in Utah from whom you bought the unit? I've got to admit, I'm enticed by the idea of being able to freeze dry anything I want.
  5. Wow, what an adventuresome person you are! How do you plan to use the freeze dried products with chocolate? Recently, I received samples from a company and have tried freeze dried in white chocolate. Too sweet, but the colors were cool. Ganache may be a great way to use them. I'm also thinking about price.
  6. I totally get that any new oven is a vast improvement on the 25 year old existing one I have. So, cast iron grates, knobs on the front, and at least one high btu burner are pretty standard today. Convection is a toss up on whether I need it. But, considering I may not buy a new one for another 25 years, I may as well get some good features. Thanks, all!
  7. Thanks for the recommendations, guys! Are there any features most or least preferred?
  8. I'm looking to replace our home unit which is natural gas and 30" wide. I'm shopping in the $1000 price range. Your recommendations for brands and features would be most appreciated.
  9. Does anyone have any suggestions for finding and working with a private label manufacturer of bars. I'm working on some products and would like to look into the possibility of larger production. Thanks!
  10. Ah, the sound of crickets... Does anyone have experience or knowledge of a grating machine powerful enough to handle chocolate? Suggestions are much appreciated.
  11. I'm looking for a good machine that'll grate bars or discos of chocolate into flakes or powder. Any suggestions appreciated. Thanks, Tom
  12. I've noticed over time rubber spatulas stay greasy, particularly ones I've used for chocolate. A friend said it's plasticizers coming out. Anyone know about this or good spatulas to use for oily substances? Thanks, Tom
  13. I like the combination of olive oil and dark chocolates. It adds a floral/fruity note. Coconut oil sounds interesting, too. Kerry, forgive my ignorance, what is a "meltaway?"
  14. Big question; shelf life. I know liquid fats tend to go rancid faster than solid. How fast in chocolate, though? Hmmm...
  15. I was wondering about shelf life, too.
  16. I'm experimenting with some chocolates and thought of doing a ganache/truffle by mixing chocolate with just oil, perhaps olive or pecan. Is it possible?
  17. Try2, It's like you're channeling what I'm thinking! Only, I'm too busy (lazy) and you're not. I'm interested in how they all hold up after a few days. Good work!
  18. So, it seems the proteins in the milk/cream have an important role of keeping the sugar crystals small. I'm thinking of making fudge for a vegan friend and wanted to avoid milk.
  19. I read somewhere that fudge may've originally been caramel, gone awry. That would explain the milk/cream/butter use. But I wonder if there's something else they provide, other than flavor, of course. Something to do with the crystallization of the sugar?
  20. I was wondering if that would work. What does milk fat and protein do in the recipe?
  21. Is it possible to make an 'all-dark' fudge; without milk, cream, or butter? (Or marshmallow...)
  22. I want to make a sauce for ice cream and other desserts and not have to refrigerate it, if possible. If water is the culprit, could it be sterilized? Or, could oil thin it down, instead of water, and offer a long shelf life?
  23. Any way to extend the shelf life of chocolate sauce, unrefrigerated? Thanks in advance, Tom
  24. One other question came up today... If I grind cocoa beans, which are oily, in a burr coffee grinder, will it gum up the works? (get gooey instead of powdery)
  25. You guys are great! Thanks for all the leads. I'll start doing research and may look for local used items. (I saw a Bunn on Craigslist yesterday.)
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