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Chocolate by Ramon Morato


Kerry Beal
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Last week this huge tome showed up at my house, purchased from the Cookbook Store in Toronto.

I've started in to the section on bonbons, where I expect I'll spend most of my time. I haven't tried any recipes yet, figure I want to read through all the theory first.

So far the biggest roadblock I see to trying some of the recipes will be the lack of availability of anhydrous butter in North America. I've already started thinking about how I can adjust the recipes to compensate for that, but I'd really love to be able to try the recipes in their natural state before I see if my adjustments result in a similar product.

So has anybody tried any recipes? What are your thoughts on the theories he expounds?

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Last week this huge tome showed up at my house, purchased from the Cookbook Store in Toronto.

I've started in to the section on bonbons, where I expect I'll spend most of my time.  I haven't tried any recipes yet, figure I want to read through all the theory first. 

So far the biggest roadblock I see to trying some of the recipes will be the lack of availability of anhydrous butter in North America.  I've already started thinking about how I can adjust the recipes to compensate for that, but I'd really love to be able to try the recipes in their natural state before I see if  my adjustments result in a similar product. 

So has anybody tried any recipes?  What are your thoughts on the theories he expounds?

Where do they use anhydrous butter and why? Is it common anywhere? Normally used for confections in what countries? I have never heard of it before and the information on the web is too much at once. Thanks

Darienne

 

learn, learn, learn...

 

Life in the Meadows and Rivers

Cheers & Chocolates

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Anhydrous butter is centrifuged at some point in it's production to remove water, and contains only 0.5% water, vs 15% for 'regular' butter. It can apparently be had in europe.

Here is a previous discussion brought about by the same book.

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Definatelly is used in italian bakeries and chocolates shop, but isnt not ready available to the public, the closest thing would be clarified butter but isnt the same, there is still more water in clarified butter. I dont think I have seen anhydrous butter available here, maybe professional suppliers or something?

Vanessa

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Looks like Anna N found a potential north american source of anhydrous butter here. I wonder if the missing milk solids might make it taste different.

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might be worth a try, isnt too expensive, but I tell you what if they find out that is been used from chocolatiers and bakers they gonna raise the prices as soon as they relize it :-P. I have seen in Italy is getting hard to come around as well, the mainly supplier on google seems CHina and I have no idea why :wacko:

Vanessa

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Anhydrous butter is centrifuged at some point in it's production to remove water, and contains only 0.5% water, vs 15% for 'regular' butter.  It can apparently be had in europe.

Here is a previous discussion brought about by the same book.

Thanks Kerry. Really interesting. I certainly do learn something new every day, particularly on this site!!!

Darienne

 

learn, learn, learn...

 

Life in the Meadows and Rivers

Cheers & Chocolates

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A little further research leads me to believe that butter oil is the same thing as anhydrous butter and I can find a couple of Ontario sources - I'll have to give them a call on Tuesday and see if I can purchase reasonable quantities - or if I'm looking at a 50 lb drum.

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You can always make your own. Ethnic Indians call this "Ghee" and it has a verry long shelf life since virtually no water is present.

Most 4 and 5 star restaurants make their own too, for Hollandaise sauce.

Put your butter in a pot and melt it completely. Let it cool, then refrigerate. Melt the container slightly so the whole thing comes out like a popsicle. The water is all on the bottom and some of the milk solids are still clinging on to the butter surface.

The above method gives a mild flavour but you can boost the butter flavour by cooking the butter a bit after it's melted. Basically boiling the water--driving off the moisture by heat rather than chilling it and physically removing it. This gives a deeper butter-y flavour, which the French like and call "Beurre Noisette"

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"anhydrous butter" is pretty much the same thing as butterfat or ghee or clarified butter. in germany you can buy butterfat in blocks, and it contains only 0.2 % water. besides that i talked to one of ramons co-chocolatiers at europain and they told me any clarified butter can be used.

i follow his theory closely, its amazing that by examining recipes from famous chocolatiers like herme or greweling for example you will find out by using our (based on ramons theory) excel sheet that a lot of recipes are incorreclty balanced, which leads to accelerated spoilage of those chocolates

t.

Edited by schneich (log)

toertchen toertchen

patissier chocolatier cafe

cologne, germany

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it's an expensive book, is it with the asking price?

I think there is another thread on this book. But, in general, these books are very expensive because they have a limited audience. Whether it is worth the asking price is dependent on each individual purchaser. Knowing that the information is available from knowledgeable people is worth quite a bit to me...add to that the aesthetic qualities of these books in their great photographs, etc. well, then it is worth the premium. Another plus is that this book is bilingual. Many of the other texts (PH10, etc.) are French only. Granted, some of the translations leave a lot to be desired, but the recipes are usually easy to figure out.

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it's an expensive book, is it with the asking price?

I think there is another thread on this book. But, in general, these books are very expensive because they have a limited audience. Whether it is worth the asking price is dependent on each individual purchaser. Knowing that the information is available from knowledgeable people is worth quite a bit to me...add to that the aesthetic qualities of these books in their great photographs, etc. well, then it is worth the premium. Another plus is that this book is bilingual. Many of the other texts (PH10, etc.) are French only. Granted, some of the translations leave a lot to be desired, but the recipes are usually easy to figure out.

The translations can be rather entertaining and challenging. They seem to use º and % indiscriminately in some spots.

Is it worth the asking price? I guess it is if - like me - you have to have every book that covers an area that interests you! Of course I did have to shop for the best price. And with the exchange rate where it is today - americans would be wise to snatch it from the Cookbook Store. The cost US would be around $178. The postage might hurt a bit.

Edited by Kerry Beal (log)
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i follow his theory closely, its amazing that by examining recipes from famous chocolatiers like herme or greweling for example you will find out by using our (based on ramons theory) excel sheet that a lot of recipes are incorreclty balanced, which leads to accelerated spoilage of those chocolates

t.

As far as I can see, Greweling does not talk about anhydrous butter. In his section on butter ganaches, he mentions that the butter ganaches, as compared to the cream ganache, is commonly used in Europe and that it resists spoilage better because of the lower liquid content. And yet he does not mention making the ganache with anhydrous butter. Curious...unless I am mistaken. I don't know the book cover to cover.

Do European confectioners not only make the butter ganache, but also make it from anhydrous butter?

Darienne

 

learn, learn, learn...

 

Life in the Meadows and Rivers

Cheers & Chocolates

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i follow his theory closely, its amazing that by examining recipes from famous chocolatiers like herme or greweling for example you will find out by using our (based on ramons theory) excel sheet that a lot of recipes are incorreclty balanced, which leads to accelerated spoilage of those chocolates

t.

As far as I can see, Greweling does not talk about anhydrous butter. In his section on butter ganaches, he mentions that the butter ganaches, as compared to the cream ganache, is commonly used in Europe and that it resists spoilage better because of the lower liquid content. And yet he does not mention making the ganache with anhydrous butter. Curious...unless I am mistaken. I don't know the book cover to cover.

Do European confectioners not only make the butter ganache, but also make it from anhydrous butter?

Actually the all butter ganaches in Morato's book are made with fresh butter, not with anhydrous butter.

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Morato uses anhydrous butter in his ganaches that also contain cream. But in the all butter ganaches, he uses fresh butter. The Aw in the all butter ganaches is low enough that the anhydrous is not required.

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Actually the all butter ganaches in Morato's book are made with fresh butter, not with anhydrous butter.

Then who is using anhydrous butter in their ganaches and is this something one might aim for?

The anhydrous butter is used because it has a much lower water content than traditional butter which means you introduce less water to your ganache (but the same milk/butter fat). Less water helps prolong shelf life.

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i follow his theory closely, its amazing that by examining recipes from famous chocolatiers like herme or greweling for example you will find out by using our (based on ramons theory) excel sheet that a lot of recipes are incorreclty balanced, which leads to accelerated spoilage of those chocolates

t.

It is worth noting that formula development can be geared only toward developing optimal flavor/textural balance; shelf-life is not necessarily the greatest concern if chocolates are intended to be consumed within ~10 days from production.

Formerly known as "Melange"

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  • 2 weeks later...

I found a source in Canada for Anhydrous butter. I was reading a Valrhona products brochure and they sell it. Lentia is the wholesaler in Canada for Valrhona. It is called "Liquid Butter" and comes in a 2kg sealable metal box. It is described as "concentrated butter 99.9%, max humidity 0.1%". Valrhona product code is 5009. It is listed on the back of the "service Products" brochure.

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I found a source in Canada for Anhydrous butter.  I was reading a Valrhona products brochure and they sell it.  Lentia is the wholesaler in Canada for Valrhona.  It is called "Liquid Butter" and comes in a 2kg sealable metal box.  It is described as "concentrated butter  99.9%,  max humidity 0.1%".  Valrhona product code is 5009.  It is listed on the back of the "service Products" brochure.

They are in Mississauga - I know that Aria has bought stuff from them before. Maybe next trip in that direction I'll get some and do a side by side with the clarified butter I've made.

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So after all the discussion about anhydrous butter, Kerry...have you actually tried any recipes from the book and how do you like it so far?  I'm thinking of buying it and would love any critique you might have to offer.

Not quite there yet. We are up north right now and Anna is working her way through the book.

I have been making some of my ganaches using his technique of 40º C chocolate and cooler cream, they seem to set up quickly, and have excellent texture. I'm sold on his proportions of ingredients for shelf life (as shown in to the Excel spread sheet linked to by Schneich) after giving a moldy, not very old chocolate to a fellow chocolatier a couple of days ago. When we plugged the recipe into the spreadsheet it failed badly!

I did make a recipe using the clarified butter that was modeled on his recipes - it was a chai latte - used some of the chai powder that I bought at the spice house, white chocolate, clarified butter, cream, lipton powdered tea (not sweetened or flavoured) and an alcoholic infusion of chai tea that I had in the cupboard. It was quite lovely - quite a bit of booze though, I was feeling a little woozy after licking the spatula (I'm a cheap drunk).

I'd report back after I've had more time to go through the book and try a couple more recipes.

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thanks Kerry, I think I'm going to go ahead and get it...because I need to spend some money :raz:

for anyone in the States who wants to get it, Kerekes has it for $230ish. while I know that chefrubber has it for $225, they charge shipping and Kerekes doesn't. so no tax, no shipping makes it cheaper for me.

I think the exchange rate is still unfavorable (plus shipping) enough to avoid getting it from Kerry's source.

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thanks Kerry, I think I'm going to go ahead and get it...because I need to spend some money  :raz:

for anyone in the States who wants to get it, Kerekes has it for $230ish.  while I know that chefrubber has it for $225, they charge shipping and Kerekes doesn't.  so no tax, no shipping makes it cheaper for me.

I think the exchange rate is still unfavorable (plus shipping) enough to avoid getting it from Kerry's source.

The Canadian dollar is really, really low right now, so the $215 cdn is about $168 US. Not sure on the shipping, but you might still get it cheaper in total (but you'll wait longer for it to come).

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