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Colored Cocoa Butter: The Topic


sirch1980
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Trouble with silicone molds - they retain the heat - it's difficult to get a good shine on the surface and filling them is a bitch (because dumping them out to make shells is very difficult. 

 

Have a read thought the Chocolates with that Showroom Finish threads to start re decorating.

 

 

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Cheers for all the feedback regarding my choice of material for the mould. I went with Silicone due to the return angles at the bottom of racing helmet designs. I guess I could have gone for a two part polycarbonate mould (bottom section = most of helmet, top section = return angle section) a bit like how you mould truffle spheres, but I chose to go the silicone route. Oh well, its done now and the expensive master moulds have already been cast. Let's see how they turn out.

 

Cheers for the "showroom finish" thread suggestion Kerry, I'll check that out. 

 

Matthew

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17 minutes ago, SilverstoneBakehouse said:

Cheers for all the feedback regarding my choice of material for the mould. I went with Silicone due to the return angles at the bottom of racing helmet designs. I guess I could have gone for a two part polycarbonate mould (bottom section = most of helmet, top section = return angle section) a bit like how you mould truffle spheres, but I chose to go the silicone route. Oh well, its done now and the expensive master moulds have already been cast. Let's see how they turn out.

 

Cheers for the "showroom finish" thread suggestion Kerry, I'll check that out. 

 

Matthew

I was picturing a two piece polycarbonate for that design when I saw it. I suppose you see how it goes. What are the master molds made from - perhaps they could be repurposed for polycarbonate when the time comes?

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How does one polish a silicone mold?  Silicone that I've used for chocolate truffles and mendiants still has a cocoa butter film years later, despite repeated washings.  You might be better off hand-painting them after un-molding.

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4 hours ago, pastrygirl said:

How does one polish a silicone mold?  Silicone that I've used for chocolate truffles and mendiants still has a cocoa butter film years later, despite repeated washings.  You might be better off hand-painting them after un-molding.

A very valid question and one I need to get to the bottom of. I know you need to clean the silicone moulds after every use with hot water (as hot as you can stand) plus some grease cutting soap. This should get rid of any remaining cocoa butter, but as for polishing, I'm not too sure as its surface will be too sticky for cotton pads, leaving fibers behind....

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7 hours ago, SilverstoneBakehouse said:

A very valid question and one I need to get to the bottom of. I know you need to clean the silicone moulds after every use with hot water (as hot as you can stand) plus some grease cutting soap. This should get rid of any remaining cocoa butter, but as for polishing, I'm not too sure as its surface will be too sticky for cotton pads, leaving fibers behind....

And does it actually polish?

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We are fairly new to Chocolate design and making them. We have been up and running nearly a year . Currently doing bonbons and decorating and spraying the chocolates . We currently temper the cocoa butters in a microwave . However it can be a slow process and sometimes easy to have hot spotting due to overdoing it in the microwave . We have seen that some chocolatiers use Dehydrators to keep the butter in a continious warm environment . I am currently researching which are the best alternative methods . From what i have seen many of the dehydrators start at 35c sorry im obviously from the U.K

Any help or advise would be greatly appreciated as our current method is long and tedious 

kind regards 

Spennie 

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I found a dehydrator (NutriChef PKFD58) that claims to go down to 29 C (84 F). I haven't purchased it yet so I can't confirm that it's truth in advertising. I'll get around to ordering it one of these days because a warmer for cocoa butter and my airbrushes is exactly what I had in mind for it.

It's kinda like wrestling a gorilla... you don't stop when you're tired, you stop when the gorilla is tired.

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30 minutes ago, Tri2Cook said:

I found a dehydrator (NutriChef PKFD58) that claims to go down to 29 C (84 F). I haven't purchased it yet so I can't confirm that it's truth in advertising. I'll get around to ordering it one of these days because a warmer for cocoa butter and my airbrushes is exactly what I had in mind for it.

 

Thank you mate for getting back .That would be perfect .Going to look into that model .We are looking for something as you say to keep both warm .

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Are you only spraying or also hand painting? Many of us believe that the process of blowing through the sprayer will put the cocoa butter into temper. I have always simply put my cocoa butters in the dehydrator at 40.5C and left them there for days on end. Rarely any troubles. Currently I'm in a workshop with a few others from this group and for that i am tempering each color each time, but have dropped my room temp to 18C and have had almost universal success, so after this workshop I'm going to try using my dehydrator to hold at the 40.5C but keep my room at 18 and see what happens. 


The reason I hold at 40.5 is that I found the next increment down is not warm enough to fully melt the cocoa butter.

 

Hope that helps.

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24 minutes ago, gfron1 said:

 

The reason I hold at 40.5 is that I found the next increment down is not warm enough to fully melt the cocoa butter.
 


That's another feature of the one I'm looking at that attracted me, it adjusts in single degree increments from 29 - 70 C (84 - 158 F).

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It's kinda like wrestling a gorilla... you don't stop when you're tired, you stop when the gorilla is tired.

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36 minutes ago, gfron1 said:

Are you only spraying or also hand painting? Many of us believe that the process of blowing through the sprayer will put the cocoa butter into temper. I have always simply put my cocoa butters in the dehydrator at 40.5C and left them there for days on end. Rarely any troubles. Currently I'm in a workshop with a few others from this group and for that i am tempering each color each time, but have dropped my room temp to 18C and have had almost universal success, so after this workshop I'm going to try using my dehydrator to hold at the 40.5C but keep my room at 18 and see what happens. 


The reason I hold at 40.5 is that I found the next increment down is not warm enough to fully melt the cocoa butter.

 

Hope that helps.

 

My Brother has literally just sent me a link about humidity and room temperature . We are in the uk and currently in our summer . Unfortunately we work in a room without aircon and try to work early in the morning or late at night . Can i ask if your running your dehydrator at 40.5c . Is your cocoa butter sitting at that and if so do you put it straight into your airbrush and let it cool through the gun ???

 

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15 minutes ago, Tri2Cook said:


That's another feature of the one I'm looking at that attracted me, it adjusts in single degree increments from 29 - 70 C (84 - 158 F).

That sounds ideal . Thank you . Just need to find one in the uk 

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We use a dehydrator hooked to a temperature controller (https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00V4TJR00/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o07_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1). Turn the dehydrator to a high temp, plug it into the controller and put the temperature probe in the middle tray of the dehydrator near the cocoa butter containers. We put our airbrush in there, too. The temperature controller will turn the dehydrator on and off to maintain the set temperature. Much more flexible and accurate than the thermostat on the dehydrator.

 

As a bonus, you can plug a small refrigerator into the controller set to cooling mode to use the fridge for chocolate work.

Edited by tschaefges
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29 minutes ago, tschaefges said:

We use a dehydrator hooked to a temperature controller (https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00V4TJR00/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o07_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1). Turn the dehydrator to a high temp, plug it into the controller and put the temperature probe in the middle tray of the dehydrator near the cocoa butter containers. We put our airbrush in there, too. The temperature controller will turn the dehydrator on and off to maintain the set temperature. Much more flexible and accurate than the thermostat on the dehydrator.

 

As a bonus, you can plug a small refrigerator into the controller set to cooling mode to use the fridge for chocolate work.

 


I've considered that idea as well. I've been into reptiles as pets for many years and have some really accurate high end temp controllers that I use to control enclosure temps. I have a couple sitting around not being used that are not as high end as the ones I'm currently using but they're still plenty accurate enough for this use so it would be an option I could try without investing in more equipment. The ones I'm using for the enclosures are proportional so they'd be even better at avoiding temperature spikes that temporarily overshoot the target but I'm not willing to remove those from my baby's homes or spend what they cost to use one for cocoa butter warming. :biggrin:

Edited by Tri2Cook (log)

It's kinda like wrestling a gorilla... you don't stop when you're tired, you stop when the gorilla is tired.

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2 minutes ago, Jim D. said:

I would be interested in the NutriChef PKFD58 dehydrator because of its temperature range, but am troubled by the really negative reviews on Amazon.


Not sure, I'm seeing 69% of reviews at 5 out of 5 stars plus 12% at 4 out of 5 stars. So over 80% of the reviews are above average to the good.

It's kinda like wrestling a gorilla... you don't stop when you're tired, you stop when the gorilla is tired.

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30 minutes ago, Tri2Cook said:


Not sure, I'm seeing 69% of reviews at 5 out of 5 stars plus 12% at 4 out of 5 stars. So over 80% of the reviews are above average to the good.

You are right. It's just that the negative reviews (19%) were really negative--especially the one where the buyer had to pay shipping to return the defective unit and also to get a new one. I should not pay so much attention to the bad reviews. If you purchase the item, I would love to read your review of it. Currently I sometimes use a bread proofer for melting chocolate and cocoa butter, and although it maintains temperature reasonably well, it is not totally dependable--sometimes it will melt a big bowl of chocolate overnight but other times it won't.

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You really should pay attention to the negatives. I only ever read the negatives to see what kind of negative reactions there are. Most of them are just silly complaints, but that issue with the warranty raises a red flag.

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8 hours ago, Jim D. said:

You are right. It's just that the negative reviews (19%) were really negative--especially the one where the buyer had to pay shipping to return the defective unit and also to get a new one. I should not pay so much attention to the bad reviews. If you purchase the item, I would love to read your review of it. Currently I sometimes use a bread proofer for melting chocolate and cocoa butter, and although it maintains temperature reasonably well, it is not totally dependable--sometimes it will melt a big bowl of chocolate overnight but other times it won't.


I agree with you on reading all of the reviews. I read the negatives as well. I just generally try to weigh the good against the bad. When they start getting balanced or even in the general neighborhood of balanced, I really take note. But when the large majority are positive, I start considering the possibility that you can always get a lemon even if there are 100% positive reviews. I also tend to portion a certain amount of the really bad reviews, when they're surrounded by a majority of positive reviews, as potential sour grapes over something. That's just my approach, not suggesting others should shop the same way.

It's kinda like wrestling a gorilla... you don't stop when you're tired, you stop when the gorilla is tired.

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12 hours ago, spennie said:

Can i ask if your running your dehydrator at 40.5c . Is your cocoa butter sitting at that and if so do you put it straight into your airbrush and let it cool through the gun ???

 

Yes, that is exactly what I do.

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The master for my racing helmet silicone mould is almost complete (see attached) but I'm still struggling to find any information on how to effectively polish silicone moulds. 

 

I realise that most all professionals use polycarb, but if anyone does have any advice or suggestions of how to achieve this, it would be appreciated.


matthew 

WP_20180618_005.jpg

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I want to start working on mixing my own colored cocoa butters, but not sure where to start.  Do you just buy the primary color powders and mix from there or are you working with a wider variety of pigments?  What is the best resource to learn how to create different shades?  For example, if I have a sample color that I want to match, how would I go about figuring out which pigments to use and how much of each?  Are there formulaic guides or is it all just trial and error and experience?

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I saw a cocoa butter colouring pack at the school I go to a few years ago, with a chart with about a squillion colours that it told you how to make, but the price was astronomical. I can't remember the brand, but such a thing does exist. My own experience is I mix up the colours I can get as powders (10% powder / 90% cocoa butter) then make the rest up as best I can from those with a very much "that'll do" attitude to it.

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