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The Choc Doc

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    Wiltshire, England, UK

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  1. Hi all, Does anyone know how to glaze cakes like Gerald Sattler? See: In particular, the second video when it pans to the back large patisseries, where you get what I call a "giraffing" effect (!) - you can see this in some of his videos, he adds the normal chocolate mirror glaze, then adds other colours on a palette knife going forward then back to create the "swipe", but the colours repel each other. I suspect this is either due to more water in one than fat in the other or an alcohol base for the second colour (using titanium oxide as base white?), but I don't really have th
  2. Does anyone know exactly what this is and/or what you could substitute for it for in a recipe? There is a recipe it calls for that I wish to have a go at but do not want to buy it (plus hard to find a UK supplier of it!) if I can help. My understanding is it allows you to create a "false" ganache of sorts where humidity/moisture is an issue, for example if you want inclusions that would be affected by moisture in the ingredients (i.e. cream etc from a traditional ganache) you would add this instead and it would allow you to do so. I can only assume it must be fat based but is a chocolate like
  3. Made some chocopops recently and had an idea to put them like a flower arrangement (I've seen this with cake "pops" but not chocolates before, but I am sure I am not the first!). Seemed to work well and went down pretty well too at work! Also made some patisseries - mousse cakes, praline-chocolate and raspberry. Quite disappointed as I crushed the macarons (and they were 1 min away from being done ) but tasted good!
  4. I've been dreaming of nougat for a few weeks now after the recent pictures - definitely a huge weakness of mine but a bad route for me to go down as a T1 diabetic...! I have just finished my 2013 version of "Chocoddity" - basically since last year I try to do this every year where I take 6 unique single origin chocolates and use them to make a ganache and dip the ganache with this chocolate. The ganache however is unusual or odd flavour combinations. I include a mini taster-bar with the chocolates to make it an experience - you taste the bar to get the flavours from the chocolate, then the dip
  5. Wow. I don't normally venture out of the pastry forums but there are some stunning bits of food on display here! Its making me very hungry!! Although I stick more to the chocolatiering/patisserie/baking side of food, I recently promised my other half I would devise and cook her a 10-course tasting menu for her birthday. So this was my first attempt - some things really pleased with, some things not as happy with but all tasted good at least! Course 1: Gaspacho Granita Cacao Course 2: Baby Artichokes with pea puree & cumin foam Course 3: Sea Bass with White Chocolate & Dill Course 4:
  6. Hey everyone, long time no see - my day job has kept me manically busy lately, and away from chocolatiering much! Great to see so many lovely pieces of work - many very talented people here! Making me hungry too... I'm working on my new 6-flavour range for 2013, so hopefully can contribute some photos soon as well. Keep them coming!! J
  7. Thanks very much Kerry, will be sure to check those out! I have family in PA so not too far from Washington and also my sister/brother-in-law/nephew are in Las Vegas on USAF base. Am looking forward to my Vancouver conference as I've never been to Canada in my adult life (was 2 yrs old when my parents took me to Niagra!!). TCD
  8. I think because you have a pure invert sugar you will use, it is very different to heating sucrose to caramel, which will form caramel obviously (and long enough become very bitter and burnt). Fructose+Glucose in pure 50/50 form (invert) will become more bitter easily and no longer (due to degradation and reactions) have their beneficial properites of keeping water around to stop crystallisation and keep a smooth, soft centre so you lose those beneficial properties. I guess you could try yourself and boil up some invert and taste it and see! TCD
  9. It is something I find very common - but then again chocolate making (from bean to bar, and bar to hand-made delights) is a VERY scientific process! So it shouldn't be a huge surprise I guess that a lot of scientists end up in chocolate one way or another. Plus the stress of research often lends itself towards overeating of chocolate anyway.... I wish I was able to hop over to Canada in April! I'm actually in Vancouver on an International Cancer conference the end of Jan/beginning of Feb and will no doubt try to seek out some chocolatier shops on my visit! However living in the UK and the arri
  10. Invert is quite sweet, so you can opt for other humectants such as glucose syrup which will be less so, but most chocolatiers seem to go for the higher percentage syrups. Eg. Greweling recommends between 25-30% weight of cream as glucose syrup. Eg with 2:1 you would have say 200g cream, 400g dark chocolate, 50-60g glucose syrup. If you look at William Curley's truffle recipes they are more like 14% invert of cream, HOWEVER the cream is almost at a 1:1 ratio with the chocolate (and whipping not heavy/double cream so more water yet to dilute the cacao). So if you were to take his standard truff
  11. Hi Kerry, thanks for the comments. My business is not as active as I'd like but I only do this part time. I've always had a love for baking and cooking and about 3 years ago I became interested in chocolates and so bought a few books, a few moulds, couverature, and never looked back. Last year I developed my own Signature range of 24 flavours of ganaches and was prepared to try it full time as I was being made redundant from my job (was a scientific researcher funded by cancer research UK). I was lucky enough to finally get a job with a company that makes cancer drugs though 1 month after I wa
  12. I love my frog moulds! I make "Caramel Poisonous Frogs" and kids love them! Eggs are also fun to try different decorations - my first Easter as a chocolatier when I started selling I played around quite a bit, had 7 different decorations I think, 3 here (gianduja egg, sea-salted caramel egg and chili egg): Long way to go to reach show room standard but its all good fun! TCD
  13. I feel for you Coreen, there is nothing worse as a chocolatier when the temper tantrums start for no good reason. Happens to us all... Look also at room temperature and humidity. Humidity is often underlooked. For moulds if you are using decent dark chocolate it shouldn't be going out of temper if the chocolate is between 29degC-34degC really. If it tempers WELL and correctly initially, it can go 1-2deg below and above optimum without losing temp and giving bloom. But not above 34oC (sorry, metric here! whatever than is in F). I would also look into how you seed - I know nothing of these machi
  14. Panaderie - Thanks for your comments - I have tried Arriba and it is very good - I can source some of those origin beans certainly in milk and I think in dark too. Ecuador is on next year's origins collection I hope to do! sunshine-supernova - thanks! Yep, I painted a square on the mini-bar mould with a colour, let it set then add the tempered choc as usual. Was in a hurry with most of them as this is development so not all were as neat as they could be (esp the sea-salted chili caramel moulded ganache!!). TCD
  15. If your Aw is below 0.85 then you can generally (assuming good technique and stable formulation) assume a maximum shelf life of 3 months. Using a 2:1 ratio for a ganache with at least 25% humuctant (eg. glucose, invert, corn syrup etc) to cream amount you can get mostly under 0.85 Aw. With addition of other things such as Sorbitol you can improve shelf life. I would recommend that you get Wybauw's 3rd book on extending shelf life if you want to further understand alcohol's contribution. It all will come down to the % alcohol content you end up with - because remember, alcohol is usually water
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