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eGullet Society staff emeritus
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    St. Louis, MO

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  1. Yes, good stuff. And its worth keeping up with their social media because they do interesting special projects with limited batches.
  2. I've not had the issue that you're talking about but I do open the canister at least once (normally first thing when I come in in the morning), give it a stir and its good to go when I need it a few hours later (I give it the second good stir at that point). I need to do the same to my melting chocolates anyway, so no pain. My cocoa butter is in all sorts of shapes and sizes when it comes out of the bag.
  3. Overnight Oats

    here comes my two cents because I'm perplexed by the wall paper glue comments. I've been serving these at my breakfast restaurant ever since we opened. When I was r&d'ing these I had two issues that I need to deal with. First, was the texture - not paste, but too course. Second, is a slightly metallic taste that was coming from the raw oats. I get my oats from a local farmer - organic, small farm, minimally processed. And I think that's the difference (possibly) between mine and the haters' comments above. I soak in water or whey (with brown sugar and maple...just enough to not make it sweet), overnight, then blitz with a stick blender to about 60% blended - I like the diversity of texture. These less processed oats than something like Quaker, are nothing even close to paste. My recommendation if anyone cares to try again is to buy some bulk ones from a natural food store. Then to deal with the metallic taste I toasted my oats before I soaked them. That helped but didn't completely solve the problem. I now try to deal with the remaining metallic taste with the other ingredients. To finish the oats, I then add a bit of yogurt (we make our own and drain it, and its thick and tart) - sometimes I'll add some powdered milk the night before but not as often since it shortens my shelf life. To serve I smear the bottom of the bowl with pecan praline, add the oats, dust half of the top with black cocoa crumb, the other half gets a heaping mound of crunchy granola, garnish with two encapsulated spheres of horchata and a spoonful of espresso jelly. I think its pretty good
  4. I always love your work and if I lived nearby would be enjoying far too many of your creations.
  5. Guitar base size?

    On a related note, a while back I had an engineer friend build me a guitar - really great machine that to this day allows me to cut soft caramel and overcooked pate de fruit. We were hoping to sell, but both of our lives took different turns. In our prototype we talked about size - both of the cuts but also the frame itself. For cuts I told him that I only needed 1" squares (finished) and then had him pull back 2 mm to allow for my dip thickness. For the frame, I already had a one-piece plexiglass pastry frame that was custom made to fit into my half sheet pans. So I had him build it to accommodate a half sheet less 2" (the size of the two ends of the frame). The problem was that the frame was built like a half sheet - rectangle, not square. And I didn't catch the error until it was too late. That means when I rotate the slab to do the second cut I have to trim some off to be able to make the second cut. That's a pain. All of that is to say that the advice to think through all stages of your production is crucial so you don't waste any money or time.
  6. I think its funny that the reviewers never ask me what I think is best. If they did I would almost always tell them the less flashy, less instagrammable, less quirky items. I've been devouring the yogurt lately. There's just something about the flavors and textures that we're making that really is satisfying to me.
  7. Thanks and welcome to the forum @TechieTechie. HERE's the second critical review. St. Louis has a lot of food media, but only two critical reviewers. So we passed the test with both of them!
  8. I agree. I think they're more for competitions and classes than actual production, although as was said previously, there are a few chefs doing high volume production using lots of minions.
  9. That took some brain power and an extra cup of coffee. Strip of thin tape down the center. Spray all black, although more heavily on the side that you want to remain. Wipe the side you want to be yellow. Remove the thin strip which will no reveal an untouched strip plus some seepage. Spray yellow. That makes sense. Has anyone done this? Is that line pretty consistent? Do you have to do the wipe a certain way - maybe swiping toward the tape, along the tape or away from the tape?
  10. Y'all are liking the pic, but ideas on technique? I've seen Melissa do ultra thin lines as well. Sure, you could scrape, but keeping it perfectly parallel to the masked line would be hard. Seems like a tool or a stencil.
  11. His reviews include facility and service, and we're a counter service cafe in a shared facility of which we have no control. It bodes well for Bulrush when we have full control.
  12. Pretty much anything coming out of this kitchen blows me away. That line is so incredibly thin! And the tips in that mold are more than I'd want to deal with.
  13. A review of Squatters Cafe from a local reviewer who also sits on the JBF Awards Committee.
  14. 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.
  15. 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.