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  1. It was just one of those days today! I was (again) trying to do too much at the same time, and made a filling for molded chocolates that I am pretty sure I’ve not made before… My plan was to make pistachio praliné (just pistachio nuts and caramelised sugar). I ended up making the praliné, and then I mixed it with white chocolate. So I ended up with a paste consisting of one third of each ingredient (pistachios, sugar, white chocolate). And then I didn’t think about it before it was already piped in the shells. Normally, I either make varieties of praliné with just nuts and sugar, or I make gianduja with just nuts and chocolate. Anyway, time for bed now. Looking forward to wake up and try one tomorrow. I believe I will find it too sweet, but we’ll see.
  2. Theese are a big thing here in Norway as well. If I had time and more moulds I could have sold a lot more. I’m making these four varieties for now: Dark, Milk, Dark & milk, White & dark (“snowballs“). Unfortunately my polycarbonate moulds only arrived today, so I have been working with Silikomart moulds (soft silicone half spheres). I fill them with chocolate, empty them, wait a bit and fill/empty them a second time to get them thick enough. This way it’s easy to have two types of chocolates (dark/milk and so on). My issue with them is why put instant hot chocolate inside? If you use the right type of good quality chocolate it should be enough. So that’s why I only make them with chocolate and don’t have powder inside (but I do put mini marshmallows inside). I have tried different couvertures the last few years for different variety’s of hot chocolate (grated, blocks on sticks and now bombs). My conclusion so far is that Manjari and Jivara from Valrhona are the best ones, and melts nicely in hot milk. Not found any from Callebaut, Cacao Barry, Casa Luker or Agostoni that works as well as Manjari and Jivara.
  3. Has anyone worked with the Agostoni chocolate couverture? Mainly interested in experience with moulding bonbons. I found a post here from 2012, but with only one reply, so I thought I’ll ask the question again. Agostoni is an Italian chocolate maker that apparently has been around since the late 40’s, but I only just heard about them, when I found out they have a supplier in my home country of Norway.
  4. How about grating your favourite couverture chocolate, and mix this with some milk powder? With milk powder added (or maybe not if you use milk chocolate couverture), your friends can then just spoon a certain amount of your mixture in their cup and add hot water from the kettle. I’ve tried using varieties of Callebaut and Valrhona mixed with hot milk. And I’m definitely continuing with Valrhona, not Callebaut. The Valrhona dissolves better in hot liquid is my experience. I’m working towards the goal of making a mix that gives a nice and convenient hot chocolate “powder” that can be stored for some time, and given away/sold in bags. Due to the fact that everybody in Norway have a kettle, but not everybody have a milk frother (or can be bothered warming up milk in the pan), I want to make a mixture that can be dissolved in hot water. That’s why I’m thinking of using milk powder (dried milk). Main problem here is to get a good quality milk powder without all sorts of additives.
  5. Always inspiring to read and see pictures from so many talented people. We are two Norwegians who still have this as a hobby, but are expanding bit by bit. For this Easter, we got inspired by Europe’s political hot topic (and I have to say also mainly by my English wife’s idea) to make the Br-Eggs-It. It was a 12 cm (almost 5”) milk chocolate egg filled with four smaller egg varieties: “The passionate English rose” (England): Ruby and Valrhona Inspiration passionfruit “Scotch egg” (Scotland): Milk Chocolate with a cream egg filling (our version of the Cadburry Creme egg) ”Dragon egg (Wales, who has the dragon in their flag): Valrhona Blonde chocolate “Irish cream” (Ireland): Dark chocolate with Bailey ganache (we tried first to make the little egg look like a pint of Guinness) For some reason the Norwegians didn’t quite pick up the pun, so most of the production was sold to ex-pats living in our town.
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