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  1. I wanted to produce a chocolate that has two layers of color, with bronze powder on top and some green color sprinkled underneath. The mould was half-circled shape. First of all I polished the chocolate mould, then I tempered the colored cocoa butter to 96-97F, then sprayed it inside the mould using an airbrush. then I used a small knife to tip up a little shiny bronze powder and sprinkled it in the mould. I waited for about an hour or two, then I poured chocolate into the mould. After I released the chocolate from the mould, there were some cocoa butter sticking to the mould, causing the surface of my chocolate to crack. There were also some shiny bronze powder stuck to the the cocoa butter inside the mould, causing the surface of my chocolate to have big holes on the area where there should be full of shiny powder. I have tried not to use any shiny bronze powder and only finger painted the mould with the colored cocoa butter, as the result there was no problem at all and there were no colored cocoa butter sticking to the mould. The mould was bought from Chololat-Chocolat, the colored cocoa butter was from Chef Rubber, and the shiny bronze powder was from PCB. Did I do anything wrong throughout the process? Exactly why did my finished products resulted in this way?
  2. Hello everyone, Just wanted to start a thread how to spray chocolate with a paint sprayer. Please describe what has worked well for you and what has not. Do you like a Wagner Airless Spray Gun?
  3. Hi guys. Came across these amazing bon bons on Instagram. How would you say I could replicate the design? thabks.
  4. Last month, I posted in the Unexpected Food Gifts topic a selection of chocolates a friend sent me from a startup company providing up-market chocolates to the Chinese market. This garnered some interest and prompted more than one person to express surprise at the inclusion of dark milk chocolate, something some people felt was perhaps a contradiction in terms. Now, I am no chocolate expert or even a big fan of chocolate* of any kind, and therefore I was clueless, as usual. So, I was interested to read this in today’s Gruaniad. It is a review of some, dare I say, artisan chocolates of that description. Notes on chocolate: darker bars that pack both moral and fibre I know we have some chocolatiers here. How common is it? Do you make it? We also have major chocolate eaters. Thoughts? Opinions? * My only real interest in chocolate is linguistic. The name has an interesting history as it passed from language to language. English took it from French which took it from Spanish which took it from pre-Spanish Mexican which took it from Nahuatl, the language of the Aztecs. Chinese, 巧克力, meaning 'chocolate' was borrowed from English and is pronounced something like chow-ke-lee. (Pinyin: qiǎo kè lì)
  5. I am making molded bunnies for Easter and I am finding that the necks are cracking and the head breaks away from the body. I have noticed that the neck is not as thick as the rest of the bunny. Total grams for this bunny is 200. Does anyone have any suggestions on how to rectify this? Oh yeah I didn't mention that after pouring into molds I place in the refridgerator. Any suggestions are welcome! Cheers Mary - Rookie
  6. Have to say that most of the chocolate which I 'melt' I do over water using a stainless bowl whose flanges far outreach the edge of the pot. So far, so good. The other melting is putting the chocolate into the heated cream for ganache. Tempering in my Revolation except when away from home and then I use a Pyrex measuring cup in the microwave, once I have figured out the particular microwave I am using. Not exciting, but it's what I do.
  7. Serious help please 😬 In production of airbrushing many moulds at a time: Paint and scrape the mould immediately for each mould every time After scraping the mould you cant get everything off so you need to clean each mould on paper As a result paint from the edges of the mould chips off Please see picture attached and if anyone has any suggestions it would be greatly appreciated. Any tricks on scraping and cleaning moulds after airbrush when in production. Thank you Egli
  8. As a lot of you already know, Kerry Beal has been working on a device to help the artisan chocolate maker – the EZtemper. I got a chance to see the EZtemper in action this weekend at the eGullet Chocolate and Confection 2015 workshop and it was nothing short of amazing. Dead simple to operate, you basically just load a container with cocoa butter and turn it on. Allow it to work overnight (about 12 hours, I think) and the EZtemper will produce cocoa butter silk i.e. Form V Beta crystals. The cocoa butter is transformed into a mayonnaise-like consistency which can then be used to instantly temper any melted chocolate or ganache. Like Mycryo, you add 1% by weight to melted chocolate at the proper temperature; however, the chocolate silk produced by the EZtemper is superior, in my opinion, because you don’t have to worry about melting out the Mycryo cocoa butter crystals and incorporating it into the melted chocolate. You just have to stir the silk in – much more easy. Not only that, but you can use it to temper your ganaches which we all know produces a product with longer shelf life and better mouthfeel. As if that weren’t enough, it also causes your ganache to set up much much faster. So you can pour out a slab of tempered ganache and move to cutting and enrobing a short while later. I think this device is going to revolutionize the chocolate industry. You should consider it for your confectionery business if you want to save a lot of time and produce a superior product. Take a look at the web site here: http://www.eztemper.com
  9. Hello I am a new chocolatier. I am calculating my costs to come up with a budget for my new business. I need help from you guys. if lets say a box of 12 bonbons costs me 4 dollars including raw material and packaging, how much should your sales price be? Also how much would you charge for wholesale, assuming margin is between 20-40%? How much is a reasonable labour cost per hour?
  10. Cool to see him using the same melanger that many of us have gotten from Premier. Interesting flavors and some information on recipe development. @Kerry Beal while their chocolate looks well tempered, they could probably use an EZ Temper to help with their workflow. 🙂 https://youtu.be/E2g-QZG4Vbg?si=pyK4eF2uxU1LTluj
  11. A supplier recently sold me 4 packages of Valrhona Ivoire. But it was out of date last month (6/2023). They refunded me but now I have all this chocolate. I cannot find anything in my state food code (RI) directly prohibiting the use of food past it's best by date. Or rather use of non-tcs food past the best by date. I'm not really sure I feel comfortable using it for bonbons.. we all know how white chocolate gets and it would really have to be used up in just a couple of weeks. There is not way.. white chocolate just isn't popular enough. I've already reached out to a couple of weekly free meal setups around here to see if they might be able to use some... not sure for what, one of them does give out bags of cookies 2x a week and I've donated chocolate and other baking items to them before. I hate waste but I'm at a loss here. 1. I don't know if I can even use it. 2. Not sure if I should really offer this to a couple of bakery contacts. 3. It has to go fast. Any ideas? Recipes that use up a massive amount of white chocolate? If in the end it has to be binned then it has to be binned but I'd like to try to figure something out.
  12. Hi all! My daughter and I are headed to Belgium this summer, just for a few days, and would love to sample and visit some great spots. Right now we just have Chocolate World in Antwerp on our agenda. I'd love any suggestions on unique (or not unique!) chocolate or pastry experiences. Or places to avoid! Thank you! Jen
  13. I just got back from montreal and stopped by suite 88 a chocolate shop on St. Denis St. They had some really interesting chocolates which were delicious. One category was chocolates filled with different liquors /cocktail combinations. I didn't actually realize this until after I got them and she asked if I knew how to eat them. I said I think so and she then mentioned that I bit a portion and "drink" the liquor and then eat the shell or eat them in one bite. (I had thought they were ganaches). How would one get the liquor into the molded chocolate?
  14. Hello everyone, The truth is that I have not written before in this forum but I do read it daily and I know that there are very experienced people in everything related to chocolate. It is for this reason that I wanted to ask for your help with the following: I'm trying to make liquor-filled bonbons, I've tried coating them with cocoa butter before closing, but almost all leak.If I make the closure only with chocolate, it's a disaster Can anyone share a method for doing this and stop pulling my hair? Thank you in advance.
  15. I purchased this mold recently on eBay, and have been having a spirited discussion about it with the vendor. I am curious about the irregular edges on the piece, which look to me like the result of the application of a pair of metal snips to a larger mold. Does anyone recognize this mold, and can comment on whether or not this is, in fact, the way the mold would have looked when originally fabricated? Thank you in advance for any information you might be able to provide.
  16. As a newbie here I thought, before piling in with my own questions, I'd pull together some of the things I've learned in my first months of chocolate making - in case this helps others who embark on the same path. Many of these learnings came from eGullet, some from elsewhere, and I'm very grateful for all the many sources of experience and insight. Cooking technique is quite personal so of course not everyone will agree with my idiosyncratic list of course. Most useful equipment so far Cooking isn't really about the equipment - you can make fine chocolates with hardly any equipment - but here are the things which have helped me the most. 1. Small tempering machine. This got me started on chocolate making with a superb easy path. The ChocoVision Rev 2B (with the "holey baffle" which increases its capacity) just gets the tempering perfect every time. Yes, I could temper in the microwave or on a slab, but it's great to take away any uncertainty about the final finish, by using this great machine. Downsides: continuously noisy, doesn't have the capacity for large batches. 2. Plenty of silicon baking mats (Silpat clones). I use these not just for ganache and inverting moulds onto, but also just to keep the kitchen clean! Working at home, I create a lot of mess and found I could reduce the risk of divorce by spreading large sheets (60x40cm size) across the work surface. So much easier to clean, and I can scrape unused chocolate back into the supply for next time. I get mine directly from China through AliExpress where they are about 1/3 of the local price. Then, for a further cost saving I ordered a couple of sheets of stainless steel at exactly the same 40x30 size, from a hobbyist place, and stuck some rubber feet underneath. The silicon mat + steel sheet can then easily be carried to the cool room. I got metal bars made up by another hobbyist place (an eGullet suggestion) which was a cheap alternative to caramel bars. 3. Scrapers. Life got better when I stopped trying to scrape moulds with a regular palette knife. I found we had two Japanese okomoniyaki spatulas from Japanese cooking which were perfect! 4. Polycarbonate moulds. Again in order to afford a bunch of these, I get them from China via AliExpress where they are £5-£7 each (including shipping) rather than £18 (+£10 shipping) locally. If I were starting again I'd buy little squares and half-spheres first, because these are easy to decorate with transfer sheets and cocoa butter respectively; plus a bar mould for quickly using up some extra chocolate or making a snack for the family. Magnetic moulds are not in my view essential for the beginner because you can just apply the transfers manually - but they are very easy to use. 5. Hot air gun - little Bosch paint stripper from Amazon. Always kept to hand to sort out anything which crystallises too quickly in the bowl or on my equipment. 6. Fancy packaging. We got some little boxes in bright colours with silver lining - great to turn your experiments into gifts. Quite expensive because you have to buy quantities, but worth it we felt. If I were working at scale I think my top 5 would also include a vibrating table, but that's beyond my means. Best sources of learning so far (apart from eGullet of course) 1. Callebaut website - fabulous range of videos showing how a master does the basic techniques. Also Keylink (harder to find on their website - look in "knowledge bank") which is refreshingly straightforward. 2. Several books recommended on this forum. Once I got past the basics, I delved into two masterpieces: Wybauw ("The Ultimate Fine Chocolates", a revised compilation of his previous books) and Greweling ("Chocolates and Confections"). These are just awe inspiring. Most useful ingredients so far 1. Callebaut couverture "callets" in 2.5kg bags - quick to measure, easy to re-seal. Everyone should start with 811 and 823, the "standards" ... but I soon moved to more exotic flavours. Current favourites are Cacao Barry Alunga (rich milk), Callebaut Velvet (white but not as cloying as the usual one; lovely mouthfeel), and half a dozen Cocoa Barry dark chocolates which go with particular ingredients. 2. Boiron frozen fruit purees. These are just amazing. I struggled with lots of different approaches to fruit flavouring until I discovered these. The problem is that most liquid purees have a short life span and are quite expensive if you only need a little quantity - whereas the Boiron ones just live in a neat, stackable tub in the freezer. Grab a flavour, pop it out onto a chopping board, slice off what you need, return the rest to the freezer. And the range is fabulous. So far I've particularly enjoyed raspberry, passion fruit, kalamansi (wow!) blackcurrant, and Morello cherry. (I'm experimenting with banana but most banana chocolate recipes seem to need caramel which I don't find so easy to perfect.) 3. IBC "Power Flowers" so I can mix my own coloured white chocolate with a wide palette of colours, for brushing or piping into moulds as decoration. Quite tricky to scale down to the tiny amounts I need, but I found this far better than heating little bottles of cocoa butter and being restricted to the colours I had. 4. Marc de Champagne 60% - great for truffles. My supplier sends it in a little chemical bottle which is a little un-champagne-like, but never mind. Rose drops (oil-based) were also useful for truffles if you like that sort of thing. Suggestions for learners (aka things I wish I had got right) 1. Start learning in winter. There is a HUGE amount of cooling needed in chocolate making; once we had cold weather we could close off a room, turn off its heating, and create a cool room. Made a big difference to productivity (and quality!). 2. Don't do anything involving caramel, marshmallows, turkish delight, or other temperature-critical sugar work until you are confident with everything else - or you will get demoralised quickly. Or maybe I'm just rubbish at these techniques. 3. Learn simple decoration (cocoa butter colour, texture sheets etc) early on. These make a big difference to how everyone will react to your work. 4. Don't rush. Chocolate making takes a lot of (elapsed) time. Give things time to crystallise properly. I find there is always an endless amount of cleaning-up to do while I wait :-)
  17. I make shell molded truffles. After my neck fusion, shaking out chocolate from the molds is difficult at best. I went to a local chocolate shop and they have a Savage Brothers temperer with a vibrating machine built in over the bowl. They flip the mold over, turn the vibrator on, and dump the chocolate that way and it looks wonderful. They also double wall these truffles. That machine is $50,000 I'm told. I need a bigger tempering machine than what I have as well. I currently use a Revolation Delta and I love it. I'd get the 3Z but it doesn't have a vibrating machine build in. I prefer to buy used. I need suggestions that are in the $5000-$8000 range if they even exist. I'm self taught so any advice would be helpful.
  18. I'm continuing to play around with my ideas for a line of candy bars. My first two have been huge successes. For the third idea I have, I'd be looking at solid chocolate with hazelnut and toffee inclusions. I don't have any bar molds, but will be looking into getting some. When molding chocolate with inclusions are there any tricks I should be aware of to get a nice finish on the chocolate?
  19. So I own a Chocolate shop, still new, there's a long way to go and many more years of learning. I'm going into more rounds of trying to hire staff and dealing with job postings and position titles etc. My question is. What are some of the best position titles you've come across (and worst). Or if you've ever experienced having to hire, what was your process for determining a position title. I want something that sort of encompasses the position and intrigues a candidate enough to look into the job description, but isn't either non representative of the scope of the job, or is just to fluffy and lame. For me a Chocolatier's Assistant, baker, supervisor etc are easy to use and understand. My problem is the front of house, retail staff side. I sell chocolate, but I also have an espresso machine and serve drinks. I expect someone to serve customers, but when no one is in, I need them to do the other odd jobs around the shop, like packaging chocolate and cleaning up. That being said, sure I could call them a Chocolate Shop Team member.... but when looking at each position as a whole, how will I determine internally which "Chocolate Shop Team Member" I'm talking about. That being said, if I post something like barista, there is a certain expectation of what a barista is. I'm thinking a candidate will make assumptions about it, like that it's short term, paid minimally, and they can just come and go as they like. Anybody have any thoughts on this, or am I just overthinking it way too much.
  20. 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!
  21. I am looking for a recipe for a fantastic chocolate sauce (maybe with some bourbon or other yummy secondary flavor). Does anyone have a recipe they love and would pass along? I am thinking of a sauce that would be thick and rich and be stored in a jar and warmed up to pour over ice cream, etc.... Thanks!
  22. I recently came back from france where I had the most delicious chocolate sauce on top of my profiteroles. I wanted to try to duplicate it here at home. Basically, the sauce was rich and velvety with a deep chocolate taste. It also didn't clump when placed on top of ice cream. (this sauce could be used for a coupe denmark or creme legiere). I have quite a few cookbooks at home (wybauw, torres, bo frieburg, chris felder, etc) but with all the different sauces and combinations for sauce in each of these books I was looking for opinions on where you found the best recipe or what you consider to be the best combination of ingredients for making a good sauce. I have very high end chocolate at home (becolade, felchlin with percentages of 65% to 72%). Jeff
  23. Hi there, I'm wondering have any of you used Richmond Chocolate for making chocolate bon bons?I I always use Callebaut callets and here in Ireland have no problems sourcing Callebaut but with the constant rising costs I am looking for a cost effective chocolate while keeping quality. Thanks for any help given. Siobhán.
  24. This cake, from the bakery inside Gelson's is my all-time favorite cake. They call it a Parisienne. I call it Chocolate Whipped Cream cake. I grew up eating it only on special occasions but as of late-since I don't live there- I get one every visit. And actually, sadly, over the years the quality and deliciousness has declined. Basically, it's a yellow layer cake, or maybe a spongy cake. (Either way, very light cake.) With sweetened chocolate whipped cream "frosting" decorated with chocolate shavings.... I am no where near Los Angeles, 8 months pregnant, and nothing satisfies my craving for this cake. So I decided to try to make it myself. Can't be so difficult, right? Simple Yellow cake? Whipped cream with chocolate in it? Chocolate shavings? My question is this: Do I need to add gelatin to the whipped cream to stiffen it? So that it "frosts?" If so, how much? Their cake needs to be refridgerated, but it holds it's shape for quite some time outside the fridge... Any input will be greatly appreciated by me and my unborn son....
  25. HelloS I began making bonbons a year ago and use AUI to order the chocolate and fruit purées. Have had great success with Des Alpes Coins using the 63% Dark Garnet, the 37% Milk Topaz, and the White Opal. But I do not see any recommendations for Des Alpes in my (hopefully) thorough search on this forum. Felchin gets high marks frequently. But so many to choose: Any recommendations? I see Sao Palme, Opus, and Elvesia- and others. (I’m still using just coins- haven’t graduated beyond that yet) Many Thanks.
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