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Found 1,186 results

  1. boombonniewhale

    Induction Cooktop and confectionery

    Hello! I was wondering if anyone on here has tried using an induction cooktop with confection making (caramels, fondant, marshmallows ect...). My stove has literally three settings, and the low setting still burns sugar and there is no such thing as maintaining any sort of "simmer". I was looking into getting a cooktop and buying some copper sugar pots and mauviel makes this thing that goes inbetween. I would love to hear any input into this idea or your experiences! ~Sarah
  2. ChristysConfections

    EZ Temper in Vancouver?

    Hi All, I think this is a long shot, but I'll put it out there. I'm wondering if anyone in the Greater Vancouver area has an EZ Temper that they would be willing and able to loan/rent out for a couple days or up to a week? I am super curious to try it out and if the results are as wonderful as I expect I'm hoping I can find it in the business budget. Feel free to message me privately.
  3. After searching this one and other forums I found a number of reasons / solutions for release marks: 1 - mold should be cold and go right away to fridge 2 - mold should be cold and only go to fridge after beginning of crystallization 3 - mold should be heated 4 - because of over crystallization 6 - not professional molds (too much flex) 5 - use cooling tunnel instead of fridge so that mold is cooled gradually I'm having trouble with release marks, as seen in the photo: I've tried numbers 1, 2 and 3 above without success, number 4 I'm not sure how to control, number 5 is not the cause as I'm using professional molds and number 6 is not an investment that I can do right now. Any help would be appreciated!
  4. ChristysConfections

    Chocolate Cost and Weight Breakdown

    Hello Fellow Chocolatiers! I am working on calculated appropriate prices for my handmade chocolates. It's absolutely shocking that after 10 years of making chocolates, I never really dared to delve into the nitty-gritty cost of goods. And when I worked at a chocolate shop that was never a concern placed on my plate. So, I have attemped (with my horrible lack of excel spreadsheet skills) to figure out my cost of goods (including labor and packaging). Somehow, I must be doing something terribly wrong, as my costs worked out to be about $1.50 to make ONE PIECE. That seems outrageous! Granted, that did include using locally made bean-to-bar chocolate from a small producer. My business-partner-to-be is helping me sort it out (thankful that she and excel have a much better relationship). However, I need some information that is don't have at the moment and thought you guys might be able to help fill in the gaps. 1. For the sake of comparison, with cost of ingredients and labour (no packaging) how much does is cost you to produce one chocolate? 2. For those that make the fairly standard 22.5mm square enrobed chocolates, are you able to tell me how much and individual ganache square weighs pre-enrobing? How about post-enrobing? I know how much my ganache cost, but I don't know how many grams per piece to allot for the enrobed chocolate coating. And I am not in production right now so I can't test it out. If you can share it would be so helpful. ETA: can anyone tell me the same for one of their molded chocolates? Obviously there are variables like the height of the ganache and the size of the mould, but at least it would give me an idea. many thanks! Christy
  5. I prepared two versions: the first one with desiccated coconut and blueberries and the second with dark chocolate and strawberries. Choose your favorite dessert or go crazy and make your own version. Bright dessert Ingredients (for 2 people) 200g of white chocolate 100g of blueberries 200ml of 30% sweet cream 200ml of mascarpone cheese 2 tablespoons of desiccated coconut Melt 150g of the white chocolate in a bain-marie. Draw six 8 cm circles on a sheet of baking paper. Put 2-3 tablespoons of chocolate on each of them and smear it around to cover the whole circle. Leave them at room temperature to congeal and then put them in the fridge for 2 hours. Melt the rest of the white chocolate in a bain-marie. Whisk the cream. Add the mascarpone cheese after whisking. Add the white chocolate and the desiccated coconut and stir thoroughly. Wash the blueberries and drain them. Put the first chocolate circles onto a plate, then a layer of the cream and a couple of blueberries and once again chocolate, cream and blueberries. Put the last chocolate circle on the top. Decorate with the rest of the cream, fruit and peppermint leaves. Serve chilled. Dark dessert Ingredients (for 2 people) 200g of dark chocolate 1 tablespoon of cocoa a couple of strawberries 200ml of 30% sweet cream 200ml of mascarpone cheese Melt 150g of the dark chocolate in a bain-marie. Draw six 8cm circles on a sheet of baking paper. Put 2-3 tablespoons of chocolate on each of them and smear it around to cover the whole circle. Leave them at room temperature to congeal and then put them in the fridge for 2 hours. Melt the rest of the dark chocolate in a bain-marie. Whisk the cream. Add the mascarpone cheese after whisking. Add the dark chocolate and the cocoa and stir thoroughly. Wash the strawberries and remove the shanks. Leave 3-4 nice bits of fruit for decoration, and cut the rest into small pieces. Put the first chocolate circles on a plate, then a layer of the cream and a couple of strawberry pieces and then once again chocolate, cream and strawberries. Put the last chocolate circle on the top. Decorate with the rest of the cream, fruit and peppermint leaves. Serve chilled.
  6. ChristysConfections

    Chocolatier's Hourly Wage

    I have an opportunity to work as the head chocolatier for a local chocolate business. I will be going in to discuss with the owner tomorrow. I am notorious for undervaluing myself and my skills, but I want to change that. I have worked in the industry for 10 years and worked in one of the larger artisan local chocolate companies for 5 years. Does anyone know what the going hourly rate it for this type of position? I would be developing new recipes and running all production operations myself. It's only a part time gig (at the moment, as they have very small production). I will continue with my own business on the side for now - the owner knows this and is completely comfortable with it. I would possibly even be able to be the successor to this business once the owner retires. Also, anyone have input on working as an employee while developing recipes for another business? I feel so protective of my recipes that I will be sad to see some become the property of another business. I guess it is just all part of the nature of this line of work. I could be a sub-contractor and just provide this company with product, but they would prefer that I work and consult with them in-house and utilize their facilities.
  7. ChristysConfections

    Honey in Ganache

    I keep running to you with all my questions! This community always have the best answers. I am wondering about the use of honey in ganache to act like invert sugar - binding with the water to lower the Aw. Has anyone used it successfully in the capacity? I usually use invert sugar in my ganaches, but I there are some more health-conscious customers that I know would love to see me move away from sugar. I'm not sure that I am willing to do it, but I will certainly explore the option! My main concerns are efficacy at preserving, its taste, and its texture. My personal experience has been that is is difficult to get the flavour of honey to challenge the more dominant flavour of chocolate, so I'm not exceedingly worried about the honey flavour being too strong. However, honey does crystallize when left to sit, unlike invert sugar. Has anyone experienced honey crystallizing in ganache or do the other ingredients present prevent it from doing so? I will eventually be doing some experimenting, but I thought I would test the waters first. Thanks!
  8. ChristysConfections

    Coloured Cocoa Butter

    Hi All! I know this has surely been talked about, by my search for this information on the forums has been challenging. Would anyone care to share their favourite brand of coloured cocoa butter for decorations chocolate molds, etc? One with a diverse selection of colours. Or do you find it preferable to melt cocoa butter and add a fat-soluable powdered colour? Thanks for sharing your experiences! Christy p.S. I was just reading about Kerry's EZ temper and I simply MUST HAVE ONE! Wow! What a brilliant product! Kudos, Kerry!
  9. Hi everyone! I hope I'm not posting in the wrong section. I am looking for recommendations on where to find a used/economically priced climate controlled (low humidity and refrigerated, but not too cold) chocolate display case as well as a regular refrigerated display case (bakery style). Something like this, but it doesn't need to be too fancy looking. I am living in Canada on the West Coast, so the closer to local, the better. I'm finding it very challenging to find something. I found and excellent deal on a couple of used ones in the USA, but the seller doesn't want to deal with the hassle of having it crated and shipped. I'm trying to keep up to date searching on the Ecole Chocolat graduate forum as well as The Chocolate Life classifieds. Also, does anyone know if a smaller table-top type climates controlled chocolate display case exists? Or are the only options out there for larger models? Warm Regards, Christy
  10. I just started a new Craft Chocolate Company and am looking for a source for powdered whole milk on a small scale (3-5kg). Any suggestions? Steve
  11. pastrygirl

    Intricate chocolate molds

    Some chocolate makers have incredibly intricate chocolate molds that boggle my mind. How do they clean them? Or do they not clean/polish them? Or have an army of interns? Or just do it perfectly every time and polishing molds is for suckers anyway? They are beautiful, but seem so very impractical. What am I missing? The Soma is not bad, mostly thin lines, but the Askinosie ...
  12. So I've been looking for the ultimate matcha brownies (technically blondies but it just doesn't have the same ring to it). I've made chewy and fudgy regular brownies, but I find white chocolate based blondies to be much trickier. I have made a few matcha brownie recipes in the past, but they all came out sad and cakey. So I have taken it upon myself to come up with my own recipe. My matcha brownies came out very moist and "fudgy" but not chewy. I'm thinking next time I should try using vegetable oil instead of butter and only dark brown sugar.
  13. Hi guys. Came across these amazing bon bons on Instagram. How would you say I could replicate the design? thabks.
  14. pastrygirl

    Rabbit Rorschach

    OK, I know this is sweating the small stuff, but I'm wondering what you see ... Is this rabbit https://www.dr.ca/rabbit-mold-7-5-inches.html holding an egg, or is the oval a fuzzy underbelly?
  15. At least in Europe comercial chocolate tablets are getting thinner. Usually 6mm thick and of course bigger in area. But I don't manage to find that kind of molds at manufacturer's sites (80 or 100g). Or at least choice is very limited. Why? Maybe too thin for manual unmolding? Or they just use bigger molds and fill partially? Thanks!
  16. Damnfine

    Bloomed truffle shells

    I have a box of truffle shells that were not stored properly and have bloomed. If I fill and dip them in tempered chocolate, will the newly dipped chocolate bloom due to the layer underneath it, or will the outer layer seal the under layer and keep them looking nice?
  17. does anyone recognise this grate/grid that Antonio Bachour is using in this picture.....or what the correct name for this bit of kit is....? I like the height and I want one...
  18. ChristysConfections

    Rose Jelly

    Hey there wise E-gullet-ers! I have another question to put out there. I am interested in making a rose jelly - one that I can layer with a chocolate ganache similar to a pâte de fruit. I don't really know how to go about this. Do you infuse water with dried rose petals and make a syrup? What's the best way to gellify it? I'm very curious. Has anyone made jellies with any other botanicals? Is anyone willing to share their recipe as a guideline? Many thanks! Christy
  19. Choky

    Chocolate mold heating

    When working with tablets and bar molds how necessary is to heat the molds? What will be the difference doing it or not? How do you heat them when working with a large number? Air gun, heating cabinet? Your help is deeply appreciated!
  20. Good morning! Long story short: I am doing a spin off the coconut/chocolate/almond candy (almond joy), and trying to create a specific shape out of the almond. My hands are cramped after a couple dozen failed attempts whittling roasted almonds, so now I'd like to try a different approach, and instead, create some kind of sub-candy or cookie with roasted almonds that I can put into a mold or use a mini cookie cutter. I'm fairly new to sweets, my knowledge in this area is pretty slim. Some ideas so far, I don't like any, but it might help turn some gears: 1. dusting almond over a stencil, but that's not enough almond nor crunchy enough 2. almond brittle, but that's too hard and sweet, I'd like it more of a soft crunch, and bringing the almond flavor forward 3. meringue with almonds (sort of macaron-ish), however, weather has been humid and raining here, and I'm ending up with a gooey mess instead of that soft crunch In addition to having almond-forward taste and soft crunch texture, it'd be fun to explore something modernish - I have a accumulated a few tools and ingredients not customarily found in homes. There are dietary considerations I will have to account for, however, no need to worry about that now, I am just looking for ideas and a place to take it from there Thank you for your time in reading!
  21. Hello, hoping someone can help me with some workflow questions. I've recently taken over the pastry role in a small tasting menu restaurant and we'd like to produce molded chocolate truffles for either mignardise or take-aways. We have 5 poly trays of molds that hold 40/tray and we'd like to produce roughly that many per week (200). Time and space is tight so I'd like to do this in one go, once per week. The problem I'm having is I don't know the proper workflow for creating this many candies at once. We do not have a tempering machine so it would be stovetop tempering. Is it possible to do that in one go with one big bowl of chocolate? In the past I've made truffles, but always discarded the chocolate after filling the molds. Is it a bad idea to put chocolate from the molds back into the large batch of tempered chocolate? (i.e. fill the molds with chocolate, let the shell set (1-2 mins) then when tipping the chocolate out, can that be tipped back into the large batch?) Also, any tips for large batch tempering of chocolate? We don't have a marble slab so the seeded method is really the only one. The real question is how can I keep a large batch of chocolate tempered for the time it takes to produce 200 molded candies? We have minimal equipment for this kind of operation and I'd be tempering over a double boiler then using ambient heat from a frenchtop to maintain temperature. Is this too much to do without a tempering machine? I'm worried about maintaining the temperature of the tempered chocolate during the time it takes to fill 200 molds with filling. I know I can retemper if I lose it but I really need to work fast and efficiently to get this done in the timeframe that I have (~1hr). If anyone has some insight into a workflow it would be much appreciated. Thanks, Jesse
  22. ChristysConfections

    Cold Infusion Technique for Ganache

    Hey All! I remember having a conversation with someone a few years ago and they said something to me about a technique they heard about that involves infusing cold cream with various flavors overnight. This cream could then be used to make chocolate ganache fillings. I think the idea was that the cold infusion method somehow imparted a better or cleaner flavor to the final product. Can anyone one tell me more about this technique? I am playing around with various herbs and citrus fruit these days for ganache flavors and I would like the taste to come through as strong and pure as possible. I am curious to know, even if the cream is infused while cold, wouldn't some of that effort be lost when heating the cream to mix with the chocolate in the ganache? I'd love to be enlightened! Thanks!
  23. Hi everyone, I'm a little pastry chief in France, still learning and really passionate. It's been five months that I did'nt studiy or practise and I miss that so much. I never stop talking about this. I decided to travel in south america to learn everything I can. I'm actually in Central Colombia, and I will travel to Ecuador, Galapagos, Peru, Bolivia and maybe a little bit more if I want to. I have time until march, more or less. My project is to go in the farms and meet the people who grow up the raw material I use for make my pastries, Talk to them and see the plantation would be really helpfull for me to understand how does it works. If people need, I'm volunteer for work in exchange with accomodation and food for a few days. My spanish is not good yet, but I'm learning and sometimes it's more funny to not speak the same language. I'm interested about everything, exotic fruits, citrus, coffee, cacao, sesame, pepper, spices... If some of you is, knows or works with farmers or pastry chiefs in those countries, I would be glad to meet you/them and learn everthing about the work. We can exchange good recipe too. Thank you very much, Loubna
  24. Yesterday I made my familiar go-to simple lime/cream cheese pie with one egg, some milk, lime juice & zest, etc, covered with a dark chocolate ganache: heavy cream, a dollop of butter. It's in the fridge covered with a plastic topper but I can cover it with plastic wrap or aluminum foil. Today's lunch guest is not coming...onslaught of sleet, freezing rain, and now snow...oh goodie...winter's here... Now she is slated for next Thursday. Is there any possibility that the pie can last that long and not poison or at least revolt us? Thanks.
  25. Hello, I've been asked to make a cake with an edible film strip style ribbon (NOT made of fondant) and I'm trying to work out a solution given limited time (2 weeks) and limited skills (a lifetime's worth of lack of decorating skills and attention to detail!). Ideally I'd love to use a chocolate transfer sheet ... but the only ones I can find are in the USA (I'm in Australia) and the shipping time makes that impractical. I've been googling and not seen a decent alternative that I think I can do (actually I haven't even found something that is edible that I think looks good, even from professionals!!)! Fondant would be the most obvious solution but I've been given the instructions of no fondant (but maybe they wouldn't notice a strip?!) ... but chocolate seems possible. Some ideas I've thought of and would love feedback ... Could I use old film negatives as a transfer? Cut out the frames and then use the strips? (am I going to kill anyone with chemicals?!!) Could I create acetone strips by trying to stamp/cut out something that sort of looks like a film strip? Use it as a stencil instead? Piping on to acetate using an image behind as a guide? I can't say I have very steady hands so am thinking it would be very wonky?!!! If I did the outline in dark chocolate would I need a white chocolate layer to make it transfer onto a buttercream cake? I have a chocolate tempering machine, most likely to be using Callebaut 54% but could use Lindt 70%/85%/90%. I've really only used transfer sheets directly on to dipped chocolate, and acetate to create random curls for decorations ... I'm wondering about the logistics of getting the chocolate on the strips, keeping it shaped for the cake (I think the cake is square ... but maybe it might be round?!) and also transferring them on to the cake? (back up plan ... plain ribbon!!!) Would love any advice! Thanks!!
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