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  1. Jim, your words are so kind, and I thank you for them. They give me a huge lift. The mould was not at all difficult to prepare; 10mm tape across the middle of the mould, spatter with tempered black cocoa butter ( I used a toothbrush) and put into the fridge for 10 minutes, then bring back up to 20 degrees centigrade (in my kitchen now, it is 27c), remove the tape and hand paint the mould with tempered gold cocoa butter; et voila... @gfron1 gave me the temperatures to temper my cocoa butter too, which made a huge difference, compared anything else I have attempted to mould. I am, most certainly, a wannabee, and I hope that continues to be the case for as long as I am able to wake up in the morning. This site is full of the most inspirational people... Philip
  2. I am half the planet away from St. Louis, but would still love to attend the workshop. Unfortunately, the buses from Edinburgh don't go that far. 😄 I'd also love to visit Lubbock, Texas, to see where Charles Hardin Holley lived. Can't see either thing happening though...😪
  3. I tried to create the design with semi spheres...
  4. My first attempt...
  5. I was assured by Jessica that the EZtemper would be the best investment I will ever make, in any piece of equipment. How right she was. I'm lovin' it... Philip
  6. A very interesting recipe/article Robert, but it leaves me with some questions: Melissa says that there are; ...a few very specific rules you need to respect to get beautiful glossy bonbons every time. If you follow them carefully, you will have consistent results every time. • Make sure your molds are very clean. Wash them with hot soapy water. - Does any other member use warm soapy water? I thought that soap/washing-up liquid would remove the cocoa butter film building up on the mould, and affect the shine on chocolates. • Polish them with alcohol and a soft cloth or cotton ball. Always make sure you do not leave any fat or water spots behind. - I distill ethanol (60%) for, ahem, medicinal purposes. Would that suffice? • Temper your cocoa butter before you start to 84.2°F (29°C) - I have been heating my coloured cocoa butter to 39c in an (almost) redundant sous vide supreme, then shaking the bottle (which is not fully melted) a few times before spraying. Would fully melting, then cooling to 29c be a better approach? I would appreciate guidance from any of the chocolatiers on here. Philip
  7. Oh, although I said I used 2.8g, it was actually 2.82g; I was fretting that I had used too much silk, right up until I released the bars from the mould...😜
  8. Well, goodness me. What else can one say? My EZtemper arrived in Edinburgh Thursday pm. I set it up, and chopped up some old grainy coco butter. Went to bed, then awoke @ 6:20am to some 'mayonnaise'. I then melted some 270g of Belcolade 55%, (leftovers from an earlier making of chocolates; circa Easter iirc) to 40c, then cooled it to 33.5c. Mixed in 2.8g of the silk, then I poured and putthe mould into the fridge. By 7am I had 3 chocolate bars (see image) ready for my grandson, who was arriving @ 7:15am. Circa 30 minutes, from start to finish. Utterly amazing. Thank you Kerry and Jessica...x Philip
  9. @Rajala The sun is out here as well in Edinburgh; first time in yonks, and I am inside trying to make chocolates . 'twas ever thus for me. I will fill them with the salted caramel I have made, and hope I transport them successfully to Spanga... Philip
  10. @Kerry Beal @Jim D.Thank you both for your kind words. You have given me a confidence boost. I hope I don't have to tell my daughter-in-law that I have attempted to paint her national flag . I used 3m Scotch artists tape, for the lines, and rolled, some half a dozen times, with the shaped end of a wooden child's paintbrush, to (almost) ensure there would be no bleeding underneath the tape. I had to order the tape from the USA, as it seems no-one in the UK stocks it. I ordered more, but they sent me some lime green fabric dye instead. Very strange...
  11. Hand painting is not the best way to go when you have macular degeneration in both eyes... Cannot wait until my compressor arrives, and then get practising with the Paasche H series airbrush.
  12. @Lisa Shock @Avachocolate Good tips there from you both. Many thanks, Philip
  13. @Avachocolate thank you for the prescient reminder that airport security are generally dumplings. Point noted, and will buy the small disposable gel packs. Much obliged. @Rajalawe are looking forward to seeing our family again, and enjoying our time Solna and Spanga. Long live the Swedish summer... Philip