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eGullet Society staff emeritus
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    St. Louis, MO

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  1. I'm standing by my last answer. It is an optical illusion - simple dome mold with a wet choco ring pressed on after everything is said and done. If you do the zoom in at 10x and look at the back bonbon you'll see the major flaws. He put his best foot forward on this one and was liberal with photoshop.
  2. I lost sleep over this last night. While I could perfect the size of the pastry tip and the amount of chocolate on the tip when its pressed into the mold, the matte finish that @pastrygirl mentioned above is still bothering me. So let's say that you dropped a chocolate ring into the mold. And, let's assume that you could form a ring, release it from whatever surface you formed it on, and you could move it into the mold without breaking it. Yes, that would get you the matte finish. But, that would cause problems when you go to spray because there would be a slight ridge that the spray would have to work around. I then zoomed in on my screen doing a 5x enlargement and you can then clearly see flaws in his ring. My new conclusion - Make chocolate as normal, remove it from the mold, then take a large pastry tip or other ring, dip it in chocolate and press it onto the finished bonbon. That solves all of the problems and would give you a matte ring with no void or shadow from the spray, and would be doable (v. overly fragile). I consider this mystery solved.
  3. Tried out a couple of these recent techniques. Just quick goes while my cb was warmed up. I dipped a pastry tip in tempered chocolate for the rings. I'm more confident than before that with the right tip I could replicate exactly. Then here's the multiple finger swirls. Less success. Also tried out the thin painters tape. Good but not good enough for me to use. I saw a video where the chef had a clear acetate looking tape. Not sure what that was.
  4. I'm constantly on the lookout for Asian strainer v.2.0 That one was my fennel pollen honey ganache
  5. Here's my theory. Large hole pastry tip dipped in tempered chocolate, pressed into bottom of dome mold leaving ring. Then splatter and spray.
  6. That would be at least 8 swipes from what I see. times 30 cavities x number of trays for an operation as large as them....hmmm...maybe. The distinct lines also make me question whether that's how its done. I can totally see that working, but that would make more sense in a competition where you have a smaller volume that Valentines production.
  7. Saw this one today. While I can see a slow way to do this I'm hoping someone can describe the faster time efficient method.
  8. Finding a Mixer

    I thought I knew what I wanted to do but now I'm not sure. I currently have a KitchenAid Pro 6qt, a Hobart 20qt and an Electrolux(Anskarum) 7.5qt My KA has slipped its gears so many times I can't even count anymore, and I've dropped $100+ on repairs each time (after the warranty period). And while I could take Paul's advice of fixing it myself, I've found that is not my gift in life. Also, its a bit small for my current needs. My Electrolux - love the power; no such thing as gear slip; the mechanism in the center of the mixing bowl is often problematic although it whips the crap out of things. Also, a bit small for me. My Hobart is just too big for the majority of my projects. I use it on some larger volume stiff doughs but I'd say it gets used 1 out of 20 recipes. So, my need is around the 12 qt level; won't slip gears. Don't care about attachments because I have them for my other machines (grinder, pasta, juice, etc). I'll use it mostly for stiff doughs - cookies and breads. I don't want to re-wire so a standard outlet is important.
  9. This answered my question of whether they sprayed a white or black coating after the colored brush strokes - no, they just pour the shell and still kept those colors.
  10. I was an early adopter and finally sold it for that very reason. I found it much more useful for velvet effect-ing my entremets than my chocolates. Very simple - brushed color, 1/6 turn, brushed color, 1/6 turn...on and on using just the right colors to create the iridescence. I use both. I know its bad, but depends on my control for the day.
  11. That was a great video - thanks for posting. A few notes that I took. First, rapping the tray with a wooden rolling pin. Brilliant since I have so many marrings from rapping my drywall spat. Second, Piping the backing on. Not sure if I have the patience, but very smart and I'm sure this is more common than I know. The technique at 11:45 is so simple yet so stunning. I will totally rip that off! Lastly, the snipped ballpoint pen - I'm going to give that a try on my crescendo on my next round. I do hate seeing all the cocoa butter waste, but I'm sure these were all larger operations.
  12. Plenty of local hydro growers, and none has dispelled my dislike of tomatoes in January, but maybe I just haven't had the right one yet.
  13. HERE's a podcast that was just released with me talking about Bulrush, Squatters Cafe, my chef crushes and more. Summary: I hate winter tomatoes; meth clinics drove me to become a chef; Jordan Kahn in the most creative chef in the country; gumball "nocino" is probably toxic but I'm drinking it anyway.
  14. Sure there is. You should see how lousy I am at ironing.
  15. Not to be an EZ Temper commercial, but it has upped my game a bit. This is my Valentine's collection. Since EZ I haven't had a single chocolate stick to the mold and every one is super shiny. More importantly for me since I do smaller production (300-1000 per batch/month) is that I haven't been turning on my large tempering machine. I use my melter and EZ, and the melter has been good at holding my chocolate overnight for use in multiple batches. Generally I deplete the bulk of my tempered chocolate and then refill and start again in the same pan, never letting it fully cool. On my refills I just do the 1% silk add and continue as normal. Anyway...from top to bottom (left row): 12-year balsamic, cinnamon, mango habanero, fennel pollen/honey, lemon