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Dan K

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  1. Oh wow, that is pretty astounding. I definitely need to leave some of my practice ones for some shelf life tests. I’ve never seen that in a chocolate before!
  2. Yes, I understand the issue. In my last attempt, I did just as you said (or thought I did, anyway), and let it sit for a bit after melting, added some seed and stirred by hand to cool it the rest of the way, and it was just not tempered at 90F. Warming it up above 90F did the trick, which I know should not be the case. I'll try it again in a few days (I'm traveling at the moment) to see if I can nail down the process. And again, just to reiterate, using the seeding method in the machine (using the KA paddles to stir, even) worked perfectly 6 months ago. I do understand that it's no
  3. Oooohhhh... that is quite possible. As @JoNorvelleWalker suggested, I should consider not using the mixer at all. I'll try that next time. I was indeed using the mixer on its lowest setting and leaving it to stir. For the luster dust, I was just playing around. I tried to splatter in some purple cocoa butter first and then brush in the dust so the color would be visible after filling with chocolate. Literally my very first attempt at all of this (cocoa butter, luster dust, and molding), so I plan on messing around some more. It's great having a hobby that's edible! Ha!
  4. Ok, I have a bit of an update. First, some photos of the frustrating part: This was my temper test. It cooled quickly (within a couple minutes), but did not have a nice sheen and remained kind of soft - no snap. Here are some molds I tried: Ugh. Gross! It was so thick that they’re essentially solid chocolate. I could not get any to pour out of the molds. Just garbage. You can see that no amount of banging or tapping on the sides would get the air bubbles out, either. So then this morning, I tried actually warming above 90F as @Jim D. su
  5. This is interesting. I will definitely take another stab at it. I feel like I did have some unmelted seed in there at the end, but I'm not 100% certain. Ah, good to know. I don't have any yet, but I was wondering about this possibility. I'll pick some up and try that before resorting to a different chocolate (since I have 25 pounds of this stuff...) I did test by spreading a sample on parchment paper. I can try again and take a picture, but it didn't seem as glossy as I remember it being last year. It did firm up within a couple of minutes (maybe too soon, which is
  6. I'm sure the answers to my questions are already in the forum, but my search so far has been fruitless. My apologies for the likely repetition. First, a disclaimer - I am a total novice (as will be made evident by the content of this post). So here's my issue. In the past, I've enrobed truffles and candied orange peels in an enrobing compound that my friends really liked, but I did not (for obvious reasons). Last year, I upped my game by purchasing this Kitchenaid temperature-controlled bowl: https://www.amazon.com/KitchenAid-KSM1CBT-Precise-Mixing-Tilt-Head/dp/B00U0VTD
  7. I have to admit, this is a possibility I hadn’t considered. My only plan for now is to sell at the local indoor farmers’ market in November and December of this year, and then take it from there. I have a good full-time job that I like, so there are natural limitations to how much I’ll be able to make, and I just plan on selling what I can, and if I sell out, I sell out. It’s a small farmers’ market designed to support endeavors like mine, so I think customers will understand. There are also 3 excellent full blown candy shops in the next town, so I don’t think it’s practic
  8. Yeah, I'm very worried as well. So maybe I should do my test, but start at 4 weeks. All I have to go on so far is my own tasting experience and feedback from friends in the past, and I have never had anything go bad. I do plan on putting something like a "best by" date on the label. I hope that people recognize that hand made fresh chocolates aren't going to last months in the cupboard! I guess I need to get on that and make some truffles so the testing can begin. In the name of science!
  9. OK, this is super helpful. I think I'll be set. We have a nice kitchen, but I'll have to get approval from management before assuming I can store things there. LOL!
  10. Great suggestion on those containers. That was essentially my plan - have a bunch packed and ready to go for the market and then have a supply as backup. I've been researching packaging and I've settled on two choices: * Boxes of 4 truffles using these: https://www.nashvillewraps.com/boxes/truffle-boxes/p-918/tc4kr * Larger boxes of 9, with a mix of truffles, creams (bon bons? I'm still not sure what the distinction is), and maybe a caramel and mini chocolate covered graham in there in one of these: https://www.nashvillewraps.com/boxes/truffle-box/p-907/tbr4ek
  11. Thanks! This is encouraging to hear, because the cheap ones worked so well last year! This is probably silly, but do you just keep them on the counter? Stored in a pantry cabinet? I’m trying to think about how everything will fit in my kitchen!
  12. OK, I have another question that I hope someone can help with.... storage! So I will be making these chocolates out of my home, and I'm wondering about storage, particularly of truffles and bon bons. I've done some searching in the forums, and haven't found answers for my particular situation, but it may already be out there. I have a couple of ideas, and I'm wondering if you have some feedback. Idea 1: Buy a wine fridge and store on trays like this with lids: https://www.webstaurantstore.com/1-2-size-bun-pan-cover-18-x-13/407PLSP1813C.html Idea
  13. Thanks so much for the replies! Thanks for the nudge on this one. I've become enamored with Amy Levin on YouTube, which is why I asked. She has a couple videos about making shells that look easy, but of course she's a professional! I think I'll stick to truffles and bon bons for now, but the spheres look amazing! Great tips on everything else as well. Thanks for the link to those molds, Jim. I will definitely take a look. Just to clarify regarding my situation - our city actually has an indoor farmers' market, so none of the usual temperature concerns.
  14. This is my first post here - I've been lurking and learning quite a bit, but I have a few specific questions I'm hoping someone will be willing to answer. First, my situation - I've been making candies for the last decade or so for friends around the holidays. I started with maple candied pecans (I also make maple syrup as a hobby), then added candied orange peels, then dipped them in chocolate, then truffles, caramels, turtles, and I dabbled a bit in creams last year (but didn't really like the recipes I tried). My friends have been hounding me for years to sell, and the situation
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