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Advanced Belgian Chocolate Candies Mar 2007


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DavidJ, the light brown parts are just a mix of white and dark chocolate.

From what I understand, JPW likes to make every class as different as possible. So while you might learn some of the same techniques, he does like to use new recipes as much as he can and he will teach any technique that you can think of, time permitting. For example, he went ahead and did a poured syrup (super saturated sugar syrup) over some ganache centers to crystallize the outside as demonstrated in his book. This was good to see first hand as reading about it is never as good as seeing it being done.

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I've got about 20 minutes to call my own, so I'll add a few more pearls. I think I'll leave the description of the sugar crystallization that Alana mentions for another day. I'm the one who wanted him to show us that, and I've played with it once since I got home, but I think further experimentation is required. This morning I had one solid piece of sugar crystal with a couple of dozen gianduja swirls firmly embedded in it.

So, of course we discussed further the theory of Available Water (Aw) and I wrote down a few things.

Water becomes intracellular (ie sequestered) when you add such things as sugar, salt, egg proteins.

Again he brought up the idea that heating invert sugar to >70 C causes it to lose it's hygroscopic (water attracting) ability and makes it less able to sequester water. I know that there is a difference of opinion on this issue.

Thing that decrease Aw

1. Glucose - which also retards crystallization

2. Invert sugar - hygroscopic, prevents drying, sweeter than sucrose

3. Sorbital - but watch for the laxation effect

4. Salt - now here he referred to sodium bicarbonate - to me that is a base, but adding some bicarb to an acidic ganache would cause salt formation (?)

Keeping the pH < 4.5 will increase the shelf life.

Water has an Aw of 1.0

Aw <0.6 is safe

Aw 0.65 is borderlin

Aw >0.7 risks bacterial contamination

Aw >0.9 risk of salmonella

Aw is difficult to calculate, is better measured.

Oops, gotta go. More tomorrow or later tonight.

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Hi people-

Thanks for including me in your post Kerry. Now I feel less like just an insignificant student and more like a real-world baking & pastry person. =) It was nice to meet everyone that was there - all very nice, fun people.... even if you did leave behind a huge mess! JK. It was fun to watch Wybauw do his thing - all 3 days Chef Sebastien (who was auditing the class and my teacher in the afternoon) was walking around exclaiming "The man is a genius!"

When Wybauw did his little buffet at the end I filled up my half sheet pan and took it to class - it was devoured within about 90 seconds. And thanks for those of you who left your own chocolate behind - they were devoured in about the same time-frame.

Anyways - off today to stage at one of the hotels here in Chicago & learn sugar work for the first time. I hope it's as fun as chocolate - then off to class to do petits fours. So little time for chocolate. :sad:

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Serj, I hope you can find time to post more about your experiences at school. Having so many guest chefs come through the school must be exciting. I know I would love to hear more.

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Keeping the pH < 4.5 will increase the shelf life. 

Water has an Aw of 1.0

Aw <0.6 is safe

Aw  0.65 is borderlin

Aw >0.7 risks bacterial contamination

Aw >0.9 risk of salmonella

Aw is difficult to calculate, is better measured.

So how do you measure the Aw or the pH? Is there test tools that a chef can use or are we talking a lab?

I know I have seen pH papers, but will they work for a sample of ganache?

Patrick

Patrick Sikes

www.MyChocolateJournal.com

A new chocolate review community

PS I Love You Fine Chocolates

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Keeping the pH < 4.5 will increase the shelf life. 

Water has an Aw of 1.0

Aw <0.6 is safe

Aw  0.65 is borderlin

Aw >0.7 risks bacterial contamination

Aw >0.9 risk of salmonella

Aw is difficult to calculate, is better measured.

So how do you measure the Aw or the pH? Is there test tools that a chef can use or are we talking a lab?

I know I have seen pH papers, but will they work for a sample of ganache?

Patrick

There is equipment you can buy apparently, but is not cheap, so JP's suggestion was to send your ganache out to a lab. pH paper would work fine.

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Hi people-

Thanks for including me in your post Kerry. Now I feel less like just an insignificant student and more like a real-world baking & pastry person. =) It was nice to meet everyone that was there - all very nice, fun people.... even if you did leave behind a huge mess! JK. It was fun to watch Wybauw do his thing - all 3 days Chef Sebastien (who was auditing the class and my teacher in the afternoon) was walking around exclaiming "The man is a genius!"

When Wybauw did his little buffet at the end I filled up my half sheet pan and took it to class - it was devoured within about 90 seconds. And thanks for those of you who left your own chocolate behind - they were devoured in about the same time-frame.

Anyways - off today to stage at one of the hotels here in Chicago & learn sugar work for the first time. I hope it's as fun as chocolate - then off to class to do petits fours. So little time for chocolate. :sad:

hi serj,

thanks so much for all your help. I know, we did make a huge mess. lol lol

luis

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A couple of crazy days at work, but finally I have a chance to post some more of my notes.

Jean-Pierre showed a slightly different technique this time around for molding shells to be used as cups. If we were making filled bonbons, then after scraping we placed them open side down on parchment until they started to crystallize, then into the fridge. For cups, you scrape the mold with one long side down, then after scraping turn it 180 degrees and place it on the other long side until it starts to crystallize. I don't know if that makes any sense the way it is described.

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Here are two pictures taken by John DePaula showing how JP holds the mold while scraping, then places it on it's side, missing of course is the 180 flip. He feels that evens out the chocolate, preventing thicker chocolate on one side of the cup.

Now a bit about sugar crystallization. I have always been taken with the pictures of piped centers that rather than being enrobed in chocolate, are covered in a fine layer of sugar crystals. JP explained that the sugar coating provides protection, beauty, prevents drying and makes them easy to pick up.

A supersaturated solution of sugar needs to be made. At room temperature 203 g of sugar dissolves in 100 g of water. At 100 C 487 g of sugar dissolves in the same amount of water. Care must be taking when making the syrup not to initiate crystallization by agitating the solution.

A traditional candying rack would consist of a container with racks, a spigot at the bottom to drain the syrup. The candy is placed on the racks, the supersaturated syrup is poured over, it is left undisturbed over night.

The syrup can be reused a couple of times, a bit more water is added and it is boiled back up to approximately 72 Brix.

The basic recipe given was 1 kg sugar, 300 g water, a bit of glucose. Once boiling, do not stir. Boil quickly to prevent a lot of inversion which would interfere with crystallization.

gallery_34671_2649_9127.jpg

Courtesy of John's excellent picture taking, we have this picture of the finished product, not quite dry.

We discussed making liqueur centers, essentially a supersaturated solution again. Wait until it cools to less than 80 C before adding the booze. You then pour the mixture back and forth between your vessels rather than stirring, so you don't initate crystallization prematurely. Using a candy funnel with a wooden stick will also cause premature crystallization.

When making fondant, you boil more slowly in order to cause some inversion of sugar. Then you will produce a product that doesn't dry out as fast. You cook fondant to 114 to 117 C. then cool to lukewarm before working on your slab. This will create small crystals. If you work it when it is too warm, you will get larger crystals. The crystals in fondant should be too small to be detected as crystalline on the tongue.

Next time I'll go over the information on how to cut with a guitar.

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25 microns or less! for sugar crystals to be undetectable on the tongue.

when soaking the ganache centers in the sugar syrup, you have to leave them overnight and what happens is the extra sugar in from the supersaturated solution crystallizes nice and evenly on the surface of whatever is in the solution (your ganache centers).

kerry, do you add more water to the solution when you reboil or do you add more sugar? it seems to me you'd add more sugar to increase the saturation again since you've just reduced the amount of sugar in the solution by allowing it to coat your centers.

if you don't have a refractometer, you can reuse that syrup for other bakeshop applications (if you're not doing chocolates exclusively) like cake syrup, etc. also, after you've used the syrup a couple of times, there are probably too many impurities or fats released in the syrup so you have to do something else with it.

by the way kerry, thanks for posting all the tips from the class for everyone! you're doing a bang-up job.

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kerry, do you add more water to the solution when you reboil or do you add more sugar?  it seems to me you'd add more sugar to increase the saturation again since you've just reduced the amount of sugar in the solution by allowing it to coat your centers.

He did say more water and I've just confirmed it in his book. I guess it will dissolve any crystals, then you'll just boil off the extra water again.

One thing I discovered when attempting to do this at home (notice I say attempting rather than succeeding) you need to make a huge batch to cover things and the sugar really wants to crystallize out while it's cooling.

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Using a guitar cutter -

The slab of ganache requires a thin layer of tempered chocolate on the bottom. We did ask about tempered vs untempered as this seems to be a difference of opinion. You don't want to wait too long after applying this layer or it will be more likely to shatter. The layer should be very thin.

The slab is placed on the guitar closest to the wires rather than against the little raised piece at the foot. This means the wires require less force to cut through firm slabs. The slab is held in place against the wires with your fingers, or with a metal bar until the last minute.

The cut should be made smoothly, don't pull the wires back if you meet resistance. Avoid jerky movements while cutting. Then leave the wires down.

Pick up the slab by slipping the thin metal spatula under it. While you have the slab on the spatula, lift the wires and either clean, or replace with a different set of wires depending on the size you are after. Now replace the slab, turning either 90 degrees for squares or rectanges or 45 degrees for diamonds.

The top of the slab can be decorated before cutting, finished with a texture sheet or decorative finish, then the pieces dipped, covering just the sides.

I'm hoping John can add some pictures here, as I can't access all his pictures and I'm getting close to my picture posting limit.

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kerry, do you add more water to the solution when you reboil or do you add more sugar?  it seems to me you'd add more sugar to increase the saturation again since you've just reduced the amount of sugar in the solution by allowing it to coat your centers.

He did say more water and I've just confirmed it in his book. I guess it will dissolve any crystals, then you'll just boil off the extra water again.

One thing I discovered when attempting to do this at home (notice I say attempting rather than succeeding) you need to make a huge batch to cover things and the sugar really wants to crystallize out while it's cooling.

that makes sense, thanks.

also, did you notice that he covered the pot with plastic wrap while it was still hot/warm? it created some condensation and a vacuum which might help to keep the syrup from crystallizing while cooling

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that makes sense, thanks.

also, did you notice that he covered the pot with plastic wrap while it was still hot/warm?  it created some condensation and a vacuum which might help to keep the syrup from crystallizing while cooling

I did notice that, it just seemed too warm at the time I thought I should put the plastic wrap on.

Edited by Kerry Beal (log)
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Hi people-

I asked at school about the tempered vs untempered chocolate as a foot. Back in January, when they were teaching us chocolate, it was below freezing in Chicago and the kitchens weren't much warmer. They taught us to use untempered chocolate. When I asked this time, they said in terms of the science, if you can do it with tempered chocolate, then great, but the reality is a lot of the time you don't have time to cut it before it sets too hard, so for practicality you use untempered chocolate. I am just envisioning 17 people in my class waiting in line to cut a ganache with the guitar in the freezing cold and it makes sense why they said to use untempered chocolate.

Also yeah- in terms of wrapping the syrup in water, it's so the steam hits the top, turns to water, and runs back down the side of the pot, melting any crystals that are building up on the sides.

How I love school. =)

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Hi people-

I asked at school about the tempered vs untempered chocolate as a foot. Back in January, when they were teaching us chocolate, it was below freezing in Chicago and the kitchens weren't much warmer. They taught us to use untempered chocolate. When I asked this time, they said in terms of the science, if you can do it with tempered chocolate, then great, but the reality is a lot of the time you don't have time to cut it before it sets too hard, so for practicality you use untempered chocolate. I am just envisioning 17 people in my class waiting in line to cut a ganache with the guitar in the freezing cold and it makes sense why they said to use untempered chocolate.

Also yeah- in terms of wrapping the syrup in water, it's so the steam hits the top, turns to water, and runs back down the side of the pot, melting any crystals that are building up on the sides.

How I love school. =)

trust me serj, if you really love it, you'll never stop learning. imagine being like jean-pierre wybauw after 33 years with the same company? i can only hope!!!

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As it is approaching the end of the month, anyone interested in the guitar from DR should give them a call by Friday. (514) 595 6336 ask to speak directly to Deano and make sure they know you are with the eGullet/Wybauw class group.

I had a message from Deano today (Nicolas is away this week) to confirm that we would get 15% off the base price if 10 of us order and that the same discount would apply to ganache frames and other products that we are interested in getting with the same order. (I don't know if that would extend to temperers etc)

The link to the guitar is here. It comes with 4 cutting frames, the thin metal spatula, extra wires and allen key. There is a cart available to go under it that will hold the wire cutting frames (and sheet pans I assume).

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More from the class -

Dipping by Hand

Use a dipping fork with thin straight wires. Bend the fork to about 45 degrees.

Fill your bowl very full.

Weigh down your parchment with something, so it doesn't shift while you are placing your bonbons on it.

Never dip cold centers.

Banging on the fork causes the wires to dig into the ganache.

Use surface tension to pull the chocolate back off the fork.

Put the bonbon as close to the tips of the fork.

Give the the bonbon a slight push forward as you drop the chocolate to prevent a foot on the front.

To cover a bonbon completely, drag a thin layer of chocolate across the top of the bonbon. However, if you have a lot of surface detail - like a walnut - place face down and flip over. This will minimize bubbles in each case.

If placing transfers on a bonbon, leave them on as long as possible (overnight).

Piping Ganache

For a rosette you pipe the shape you want, then stop squeezing, but continue the circular motion for a bit. This will prevent ganache tips.

For the linear piped shape (that you use to fill the little ovals shown in the picture below), while squeezing the piping bag push away from you, pull back towards you, then stop squeezing and push away again.

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Ovals at the top of the picture that are filled with the linear piped shape

Backing Off a Plate of Bonbons

If you are trying to back off a plate of bonbons that contain a very liquid or soft filling, that the weight of the chocolate would displace - dip your scraping spatula into the chocolate, use it to cover as many rows as it will cover and give a quick scrape. Dip again, cover another couple of rows and scrape. Continue until covered.

A New Idea From JP

Jean Pierre gave us an idea, that he said he had just come up with. He made a mixture of gianduja and paillete feuilletine, rolled it out thinly, cut with cutter. Now take the cut shapes, place on a piece of parchment and warm the bottom with your heat gun. This will cause the shape to stick to the parchment and when you pipe your ganache onto the top of this base it won't shift.

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Some excellent pictures that John took that I've added to show this.

Scraping Your Molds

If you scrape the filling in your molds with the spatula tilted back towards you - you will remove more filling leaving a concave top on the filling. If you hold your spatula at 90 degrees you will get a flat top on your filling. If you hold the spatula tilted away from you - you will leave more filling and have a convex top on the filling.

And a last comment - if you are using a filling that contracts when it cools (eg gianduja) then make your shells thicker.

And that ends what I have written down. I hope that other class attendees will add details from their notes. I didn't write down things that I already knew, so my notes were rather sketchy.

Edited by Kerry Beal (log)
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Weigh down your parchment with something, so it doesn't shift while you are placing your bonbons on it.

Another trick is, rather than weighing it down, use a spot of melted chocolate to stick the parchment to the tray

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I just finished taking a class at the French Culinary Institute. While the class covered a lot of the basics. (Not as advanced as the wybauw class) it did go into a lot of detail.

One tip that I thought was interesting came from a chef teach the class. She mentioned that they did Olive oil and salt filed chololate petit fours. How do you fill chocolate bonbons with olive oil and close them off? They take parchment paper and spread chocolate that would cover the bottom of the mold on it. When it begins to set they put it on the filled mold and press hard to "attach" it to create the bottoms. They then remove the paper and scrape. This wasn't demonstrated but it seemed like a neat technique.

Not sure if I will have time to take the wybauw class in NYC.... but boy I sure would love to!

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If you scrape the filling in your molds with the spatula tilted back towards you - you will remove more filling leaving a concave top on the filling.  If you hold your spatula at 90 degrees you will get a flat top on your filling.  If you hold the spatula tilted away from you  - you will leave more filling and have a convex top on the filling.

Hi Kerry,

I'm about 95% sure that he advised using the spatula at a 90 degree angle in order to remove more filling (leaving a concave top) and that we shouldn't scrape with the spatula either tilted toward or away from the mold.

This particular technique was being used when he was filling 'fruits de mer' (tempered gianduja filled seashells) and basically just poured the filling into the cavities rather than carefully piping or filling the cavities individually.

Anyone else remember this tip?

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If you scrape the filling in your molds with the spatula tilted back towards you - you will remove more filling leaving a concave top on the filling.  If you hold your spatula at 90 degrees you will get a flat top on your filling.  If you hold the spatula tilted away from you  - you will leave more filling and have a convex top on the filling.

Hi Kerry,

I'm about 95% sure that he advised using the spatula at a 90 degree angle in order to remove more filling (leaving a concave top) and that we shouldn't scrape with the spatula either tilted toward or away from the mold.

This particular technique was being used when he was filling 'fruits de mer' (tempered gianduja filled seashells) and basically just poured the filling into the cavities rather than carefully piping or filling the cavities individually.

Anyone else remember this tip?

That's right, Alana. I specifically remember him saying to use a 90 degree angle.

BTW, I took a break from the joyous task of getting my taxes together :angry: and will have some pix in my Public ImageGullet Album asap. I'll add a link(s) as I can.

ETA: Voilà! (Hope this works...) J.P. Wybauw at French Pastry School - 2007

Edited by John DePaula (log)

John DePaula
formerly of DePaula Confections
Hand-crafted artisanal chocolates & gourmet confections - …Because Pleasure Matters…
--------------------
When asked “What are the secrets of good cooking? Escoffier replied, “There are three: butter, butter and butter.”

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If you scrape the filling in your molds with the spatula tilted back towards you - you will remove more filling leaving a concave top on the filling.  If you hold your spatula at 90 degrees you will get a flat top on your filling.  If you hold the spatula tilted away from you  - you will leave more filling and have a convex top on the filling.

Hi Kerry,

I'm about 95% sure that he advised using the spatula at a 90 degree angle in order to remove more filling (leaving a concave top) and that we shouldn't scrape with the spatula either tilted toward or away from the mold.

This particular technique was being used when he was filling 'fruits de mer' (tempered gianduja filled seashells) and basically just poured the filling into the cavities rather than carefully piping or filling the cavities individually.

Anyone else remember this tip?

If you scrape the filling in your molds with the spatula tilted back towards you - you will remove more filling leaving a concave top on the filling.  If you hold your spatula at 90 degrees you will get a flat top on your filling.  If you hold the spatula tilted away from you  - you will leave more filling and have a convex top on the filling.

Hi Kerry,

I'm about 95% sure that he advised using the spatula at a 90 degree angle in order to remove more filling (leaving a concave top) and that we shouldn't scrape with the spatula either tilted toward or away from the mold.

This particular technique was being used when he was filling 'fruits de mer' (tempered gianduja filled seashells) and basically just poured the filling into the cavities rather than carefully piping or filling the cavities individually.

Anyone else remember this tip?

That's right, Alana. I specifically remember him saying to use a 90 degree angle.

BTW, I took a break from the joyous task of getting my taxes together :angry: and will have some pix in my Public ImageGullet Album asap. I'll add a link(s) as I can.

ETA: Voilà! (Hope this works...) J.P. Wybauw at French Pastry School - 2007

You are right that he told us to use the 90 degree to get the appropriate amount of filling for putting together a double mold with gianduja. The other info is just what he told us would happen if we held the spatula at different angles. I neglected to add that 90 degrees was the preferred angle. My bad.

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Can someone comment on the method for creating a double mold?  I watched him do it in my class but failed to take notes.

are you talking about taking two identical molds and filling them and then sticking them together like the gianduja filled fruits de mer?

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Can someone comment on the method for creating a double mold?  I watched him do it in my class but failed to take notes.

are you talking about taking two identical molds and filling them and then sticking them together like the gianduja filled fruits de mer?

Yes, JPW made seashells in my class. I half recall that he used a fairly thin filling but I can't be certain.

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