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  1. I prefer doing all my caramels wet. The added water is boiled out so it doesn't change the consistency or shelf life. I also feel that it allows for a more evenly cooked caramel (though that's just because I'm not experienced with dry caramels I guess). I suppose wet caramels do take longer to cook too but it could be multi-tasked so there's no time lost really (just set a timer or you might forget about it like I've done ).
  2. I believe it's the 'caramelisation' of the milk powder. Especially, with cooking white choc in an oven/bain marie, I feel that depth of colour couldn't possible come from caramelisation of sugar. I have moulded caramelised white choc before but I first had to thin it out with extra cocoa butter, immersion blend it (to try to smooth it out) then strain it. Cooking the white choc, for whatever reason, seems to make it thick and clay-like,
  3. Products like these are normally unmoulded when frozen. Sometimes you'll find the acetate sticks to the ring (because of moisture or a bit of mousse getting between the acetate and ring). If this happens, hit the side of the ring with a blowtorch or hairdryer. If your cheesecake recipe (I'm assuming cold-set?) is calibrated correctly (that is, it sets) you should even be able to unwrap the acetate at with the product at room temperature - so unwrapping it frozen won't be a problem. Make sure you press the biscuit crumbs firmly into the 'corners' of your mould. If they're not pressed firmly enough, some bits may break off and you'll get a less clean look. To help prevent this you could add extra melted butter but that will make the texture more solid.
  4. My understanding of it is that you're really just after a homogenous mass by the time you get to the piping stage. I checked my recipes and: - in an Italian meringue method, the only mention of non-icing sugar is in the syrup that gets boiled and added to the egg whites, while - in a French meringue method, the only mention of non-icing sugar is in the egg whites (where they should technically dissolve completely or enough to be very small anyway). I don't think the small amount of starch in the icing sugar is enough to make a difference. If anything, I believe it would add a slight bit of body/sponginess to the macaron. I think you're right about the icing sugar being mixed into the meal to prevent clumping - it just makes everything easier to mix and means less mixing overall to get a uniform mass. As a guess, if you had large enough sugar crystals in the mixture before baking: - on the shell: it may colour faster, be quicker to absorb moisture, dissolve and form small 'dimples' on the shell - on the inside: I have no idea - I don't imagine there would be a noticeable difference.
  5. That could be a few different things really. As a guess, I'd suggest flourless chocolate sponge layers, chocolate buttercream layers and a chocolate ganache glaze
  6. Translation: Recipe taken from site: 'Cuisine Plus' Recette tirée du site "Cuisine Plus" For approximately 100 caramels Pour environ 100 caramels 750g liquid cream (assumed to be 35% fat cream - doesn't specify) 750g de crème liquide 500g passionfruit juice (literally translates to juice, probably meant to say puree?) 500g de jus de passion 500g mango juice (literally translates to juice, probably meant to say puree?) 500g de jus de mangue 2.5 vanilla beans 2.5 gousses de vanille 125g glucose 125g de glucose 900g sugar 900g de sucre cristal 250g butter 250g de beurre In a large casserole, mix the cream, the fruit juices, the vanilla (opened), the glucose and the sugar. Dans une grande casserole, mélanger la crème liquide, les jus de fruits, les bâtons de vanille ouverts en deux, le glucose et le sucre. Cook to 110C. Cuire à 110°C. Off the fire, add the fire and recook to 121C. Ajouter alors le beurre hors du feu puis recuire à 121°C. Pour into a tray the size of a plaque. (dimensions unknown) Verser dans un cadre de la taille d'une plaque. Allow to cool to room temperature then place in the fridge for a few hours. Laisser refroidir à température ambiante puis laisser au frais quelques heures. Unmould then cut the soft caramels. Wrap them in florist's paper. Démouler puis découper les caramels mous et les emballer dans du papier de fleuriste.
  7. Most infusions have the potential to decrease the shelf life of ganaches because they inoculate the ganache with bacteria. I don't know the exact process you're using but it might be worth re-boiling your cream mixture after straining out the cardamom if you're not already doing so.
  8. I can't stand working with white chocolate in recipes. Unless I know exactly what chocolate is being used I'm always concerned it won't set up for me and that often ends up being the case. It's not a white chocolate chai ganache, but give this one a go if you like. I experimented and came up with this one a few years back, I really enjoy it but find the flavour is too dull after a week or so. I normally use it as a whipped ganache but you can use it as a normal ganache too. I'm not sure if it's firm enough to use slabbed. I'm pretty sure you need 20-22% minimum CB for that so it shouldn't be too hard to calculate based on your chocolate. Part A: 20g chai tea mix (leaves plus spices, I use T2's standard chai mix so don't know what the proportions would be if you had to put it together yourself) 180g cream 35% 15g water 25g sorbitol Part B: 66g butter 235g milk chocolate 20g dark chocolate 66% Simmer part A for three minutes. Strain and add milk to bring weight to 133g. Pour over part B. Emulsify. Cover with glad wrap and let set overnight. Whip then pipe.
  9. Has anyone ever tasted a really good fresh-tasting citrus ganache? I have once. It was a lime bonbon made by Franck-Fresson over in France. Unfortunately, now every citrus ganache since then has tasted, well, old. Does anyone has any idea how these are done? I've gone as far as adding freshly squeezed lime juice to a zest-infused ganache (calculated with a slightly lower fat percentage than usual so the fat doesn't inhibit the flavour too much) and found that they still couldn't compare. Help?
  10. This walnut praline is sounding more and more interesting . Ummm... the pine nut praline went into a dual layer bonbon with a porcini mushroom ganache (soaked, boiled with cream, blitzed then sieved). It wasn't bad but not something I'd eat every day. I generally prefer simple 'comfort' flavours.
  11. Hi all! So I'm looking at experimenting with different pralines. I've done pine nut ones before (which maintain their distinct flavour but are quite expensive to make) but haven't tried making walnut praline. Has anyone attempted this? Were the results worthwhile?
  12. I think the name you're after is craquelin.
  13. I've never heard of anything of the sort before -- how intriguing! Especially considering how, if anything, the ganache would retract. I had this thought the expansion might have been due to expansion of starch molecules or something but that's just silly. Banana ganaches simply would not work then. My current feeling is, if the bananas were fresh, that there may have been some degree of fermentation that happened. Especially if you followed the instructions on the recipe because the bananas aren't heat treated at all (being added at 35C only). I may have miscalculated but I think that banana ganache recipe has a moisture content of 25% which is at the upper limit of acceptable water content for bonbons but if you combine that with using a fresh banana puree, that could essentially 'inoculate' the ganache Of course, that whole theory is debunked if the puree had been heat treated.
  14. That would make a very light mousse it would seem. Also, due to the lack of egg yolks and fat (explanation later), the flavour may not sit on the palate long. Try: 400g apple juice (30-50% gives a good apple flavour) 45g sugar 550g cream 10g gelatin - Egg white powder as needed - Acid as needed Normally, it'd be worth mentioning that, because apple juice isn't a viscous liquid, you'd want to wait till it's really starting to jellify before adding the whipped cream. In this case, it may not be as important unless you were really trying to maximise the volume. This mousse would technically count as a low fat mousse (approximately 17.5% of it being fat). Due to this, and the lack of any emulsifiers (normally coming from egg yolks) - the flavour and creamy texture won't sit on the tongue much longer than the actual mousse does.
  15. Once those choc lumps get there, they're pretty much there to stay. The only way to melt them out would also ruin the texture of your the butter ganache - if it didn't split it completely. Theoretically it might be possible to melt everything out and then re-emulsify everything back together with some fresh butter but it would be so time consuming it probably wouldn't be worth the effort. I haven't made a butter ganache before, but this should work: Incorporate untempered chocolate into your butter mixture, but hold a portion back. Temper that remaining portion, then incorporate it into the untempered butter-chocolate mixture. Doing that, you take advantage of the fact that an untempered butter ganache virtually never sets and also increase the working time you have compared to if you incorporated all the chocolate while it was tempered. Three things to consider: - Don't let the untempered mixture get too cold or sit too long - unstable crystals will still form and produce a less than ideal result. - There needs to be 'enough' stable crystals in the tempered chocolate to stabilise the entire mass - you have the choice of setting more chocolate aside to temper or intentionally over-tempering the chocolate. Depending on the scale of the recipe, I'd hazard that 10-15% of the entire mass would be a good amount of chocolate to set aside to temper. For smaller scaled recipes, that percentage might need to be increased as tempering 75g of chocolate, for example, just isn't practical. - If you're using a combination of chocolates, set aside the milk/white chocolate to temper. The lower temperatures and increased setting time will help.
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