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  1. Exactly. You need something with blades, not something that beats or whips. Blades cut through, beaters beat, 2 different effects. Sorry but I don't know how to answer with written words to such a question. This is one of the things you show with the real example, I never heard / read words that can explain the desired consistency. My best answer would be "go to the best pastry shop near you, buy an item with pastry cream, that's the desired consistency". Not of help, but I don't know anything better. Teo
  2. 1) Depends on the method you use. If you want your pastry cream ready to use after chilling, then it needs to be at the proper texture. You can use more starch than normal, get a gelatined "hard" pastry cream, then blitz it with an immersion blender or a food processor to get a fluid gel (beware that the more you blitz it, the more fluid it becomes, until it gets liquid). 2) Cooking times affect the gel strength: the more you cook it the stronger the gel, until you reach a point where it reverses (the more you continue cooking it, the more you weaken the gel). Not your case. Beware one thing about amylase: human saliva contains amylase, so never taste pastry cream with a spoon you licked before, even if it's just for your personal consumption. 3) You are not supposed to whip pastry cream. You can whip crème anglaise made with cream, not pastry cream. If you try to whip pastry cream you break the gel bonds, ruining the texture. In your case you used a bit much starch, you should change the amount to 10 g. If you use 14 g then you need to blitz it as explained in point 1). Teo
  3. teonzo

    Nutmeg nubbins

    If you have a spice / coffee grinder then you can grind the pieces, keep the nutmeg powder in an airtight container / small jar / whatever, then pick up what you need each time. Beware the powder looses aroma with time. If you use nutmeg in baked goods, then you can grind a small nutmeg piece with some sugar or flour. Teo
  4. You need to consider the walls of the oven. When you heat up an oven you need to heat up the walls. Consider the surface area of the walls of an oven that holds 10 pans, then consider the surface area of the walls of 10 ovens that hold 1 pan each. The surface area for the 10 ovens solution is much higher. This means much higher costs for heating them, much higher costs for keeping them hot. Then there is the volume factor: the 10 ovens solution will take a much higher volume than the 1 oven solution. Space is prime estate in a professional kitchen. Then there is the time efficiency factor. Most of the times you are preparing multiple dishes. Solo diners are a minority. As are parties that order all different dishes. If you are serving a 6 top table then you need to send out 6 dishes at the same time. If those proteins/whatever are in the same big oven then you need to open only 1 door and pick up 1 or 2 pans. If you are using the single serving ovens, then you need to open 6 doors and pick up 6 small pans. This would kill serving times, sending the kitchen in the weeds. The temperature setting needed during service is almost always the same. You need different temperatures during prepping time, not during service time. So the ideal is to start the prepping time with low temperature stuff, then going up. Bread is usually the thing that asks for the hottest oven, you should cook it as one of the last things before service, so that you reach service with a ready oven at around 180°C (350 F). A good chef is able to organize the menu and the workflow in a way that the kitchen oven will run in an optimized way. Meaning no dead times when the oven is hot and empty. Meaning it will be full or almost full all the time it's on. The difference between a great chef and a mediocre chef relies mainly in the organizational skills, not in the cooking skills. Great chefs are the ones good at cooking AND at organizing. There are lots and lots of chefs who are skilled at cooking, but they end up running a failing business because of mediocre organizational skills. Teo
  5. This view is a bit simplistic. It assumes that the only things capable of thinking and feeling are what are called "brains". Are you so sure it's impossible that plants could use other ways to have thoughts and feelings? For the little we know, we can expect that in the future it will be possible to face artificial intelligence, which will be based on something completely different from what we call brain. I underscore "we can expect", meaning it seems the most probable scenario, but we can't be sure on either side. Same way, how can we be totally sure that plants don't have a system they use to think and feel, but is completely different from animal brains? We don't even know how our own human nervous systems work, see al the new studies on the enteric nervous system and our istinctive logic (called "gut feelings" and so on). We know so little about our own brain that supposing other living beings are incapable of thinking is pure arrogance. How can we be so SURE another living being is not capable of thinking? Just think about the opposite: what would happen if we would be able to transfer a human brain in another living being? Would we be able to notice that there is "human intelligence" in that living being? We can detect intelligence mainly through 2 things: language and artifacts. To be able to claim that a language is an output of poor intelligence we need to understand that language first. To be able to make artifacts you need a body that is able to create artifacts. We know dolphins are intelligent, but how much? We can't say anything about their language, we know they have a structured language they use to communicate, but we still haven't found a way to decipher it (if we were so much superior then it would be pretty simple for us to decipher such a simple language, or not?). We can't judge from their artifacts because, well, try imagining what artifacts you could make with the body of a dolphin. For plants it's the same: recent studies (last 5 years, there's an equipe in Florence at the forefront of this) point out that plants are capable of complex communications. We just are not able to decipher that language (yet). Does this mean that plants are not capable of thinking? No. Does this mean that plants are capable of thinking? Neither. We are still just too ignorant to claim something on either side. We are only arrogant because we are lucky to have hands, thanks to them we are able to kill all other living beings with ease. This makes us feel "superior". This does not make us more intelligent, especially considering all the killings between our own species. Teo
  6. Some recent studies are giving evidences that plants are able to communicate and feel pain. This will lead to some interesting developments in the vegan philosophy. Teo
  7. This is one of the cases where you are allowed to say you have some Oompa Loompas in your basement. Teo
  8. Beautiful mold! I would try using caramelized white chocolate for the shell, both for appearance and taste. Teo
  9. You are working with temperatures that are a bit too high. Since you are working manually you can't be sure that ALL the chocolate is at the temperature you are measuring. Most probably some parts in the bowl will be a bit hotter and some parts a bit colder. The hotter parts are melting the thin layer of cocoa butter on the molds, sending it out of temper. Try lowering of 1 degree Celsius your working temperatures for chocolate. Teo
  10. Egg whites are 90% water, if you add 5 g water to 100 g egg whites the difference is almost null. Especially if these whites are the ones for the tpt and not for the meringue. You can sub 20% egg whites with water without troubles (the ones for the tpt). If you mix the powder colorings with egg whites then you risk ending up with undissolveld colorings, which means micro-dots on the final shell. This is due to the proteins in the egg whites, which are an obstacle for the colorings ending in solution with water. Teo
  11. Normal people have 2 arms, Kali Beal has 10. Here in Italy, when someone is able to make 785478 different things in 2 seconds, we say he/she is like Kali. Teo
  12. Hermé uses powder colorings diluted in water. So the amount called for in the recipes is the whole coloring + water. Can't remember the ratio of coloring to water, sorry. But everything depends on which kind of colorings you are using, there can be significant differences between producers. So you need to adapt with what you are working with. If you are using powder colorings then be careful, since 1 g goes a long way. Teo
  13. I have the old French release, titled "Macaron" (without the final S) and with the black cover. Never had the other release on hand, so I never compared them. Having said that, I heard that the one with the purple cover is an expanded reissue, has the same content of the first one, plus some added recipes. I checked the number of pages on Amazon and in fact the purple one has about 30 pages more than my copy. Be careful that there is also the French edition with the same cover. Teo
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