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Kerry Beal

Report: eG Chocolate and Confectionery Conference 2010

100 posts in this topic

So I know I said I was combining both days into one post, but these posts are getting mighty long! So here we are on the last day...

We started out in the classroom discussing decorating techniques, and Kelly showed us her two bon bons from yesterday:

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Bob has a slick device for making what he calls "small" batches of caramel: it's a deep fryer, and it works extremely well (and the caramel was damned good).

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Here are some more bonbons that we finished up first thing today (they needed an overnight rest before they could be bottomed). I think these are Erica's cardamom ganache, but I'm not positive on that.

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Lots of tasting going on today:

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The culinary students learn how to temper chocolate in a melter:

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Discussing flavors:

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Our very own mad scientist, hard at work:

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I think Eric made a dozen ganache flavors over the weekend: here he is at work on one of them:

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Kerry and Bob trying to decide if it's too early to start drinking. Hey, it's five o'clock somewhere!

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Me capping off my version of Steve's cherry ganache bonbons:

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We did manage to make a bit of a mess (remember, this is one of four batches of tempered chocolate, and it's the one with the biggest pan!):

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Prepping some molds for bottoming, I think maybe they were a little over-full:

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Steve getting hands-on with his lesson on bottoming bonbons. It turns out that the trick is to hold the blade perpendicular to the molds as you sweep across. Also, be sure you are holding the mold level!

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Once you airbrush the molds you have to wipe the tops off to try to prevent scraping the colored cocoa butter into your uncolored molding chocolate:

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Wilma brought some bar molds to play with: here she is checking the fill level on one of them.

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Mike experimenting with luster dust (no, that is not a narcotic...)

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Pat discussing his color application technique with Bob:

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Steve demonstrating the use of the immersion blender:

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Jim working on his technique for capping off bonbons:

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Eric checks the white chocolate for temper before Erica molds her hearts:

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Steve demoing capping off bonbons. I think he did this demo 20 times this weekend. Thanks Steve! I still suck, but I'm learning...

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Kerry brought her silkscreening toys: here is her setup for her "Chocolate Doctor" transfers:

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Making the transfer:

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The complete transfer sheet:

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Kelly hand-painting the finishing touches on her Caprese bonbons:

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The main thing I wanted to practice was filling molds properly, so here I am doing it again:

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A wide shot of everyone hard at work:

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Eric played around with a disposable hemisphere mold that had a cocoa butter transfer already on it. It turned out to be too flexible to use normal techniques on:

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Steve showing us how to play the guitar:

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Mary hand-painting chile peppers on her habanero bonbon molds:

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Damnit! I can never get all the friggin' things out!

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But Jim can:

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This is why he's so happy: one shot, one kill complete batch out of the mold. He's ready to go pro:

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Bob showing us how his death machine... er... caramel slicer works:

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See where Bob's hand is? Brave man, he must REALLY trust Art!!

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Kerry hand-making a transfer sheet:

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Here's the completed sheet:

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Even the culinary students pitch in to help us learn how to pipe properly:

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Wilma sprinkling peanuts on the chocolate-covered caramels:

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Bob shows the culinary students how to hand-roll the caramels in chocolate:

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And now applying some peanuts:

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Tasting continuously is an important part of the process:

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Still working on our piping skills, of course. How do you hold the bag again?

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The culinary students got more than they bargained for! They got to play in the chocolate along with the rest of us:

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We only did one batch of slabbed ganache this weekend: Shotts' coconut lemongrass ganache. Probably should have dipped it in dark instead of milk, but even that may not have saved it. And the transfer sheets didn't transfer right, either! Bummer.

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Here are Kerry's transfers on oreos:

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The disposable mold was tough to work with, but the shine on the resulting bonbons was impressive:

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And for my final shot: we made a hell of a lot of chocolates this weekend...

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I'd like to thank everyone who came to the event, I had a fantastic time and learned a lot. I hope I got myself "over the hump" from my last few failures at home, and I'm re-energized to get back into the confections world now. Thanks especially to Steve of course, for putting it together, and to the folks at Albert Uster and L'Academie for indulging us. Finally, thanks to my wife for taking most of these photos! I hope they helped those of you who couldn't make it get a sense for what it is like. I'm ready for next year... Niagara here we come!!!


Chris Hennes
Director of Operations
chennes@egullet.org

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I look so angry in that picture of me and my pot - really I wasn't -

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Pics from the first day's get together

donna_small.JPG

Donna with 3 kinds - black raspberry, peanut (in the peanut shell), plus one more

that I didn't get a chance to try. Tasty.

kelly_wine.JPG

Kelly with nice ice wine she brought

mike_small.JPG

Mike with two - one was straight dark chocolate, very creamy, very nice

texture. The other was what Kerry talked about - heating White chocolate

and stirring it every hour for 8 hours (or something like that), then

making a ganache out of it. Hard to see from this picture, but Mike had

excellent technique and attention to detail on his pieces.

steve_small.JPG

Steve with a cherry (that we copied the next day) and I think a passion caramel.

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bobs_small.JPG

Betsy, Karen, Chris, Mary, along with Bob's

cinnamon pyramids and his grandfather's popcorn (really good!)

no_explanation_necessary.JPG

No explanation necessary.

panner.JPG

the panner

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habanero_raspberry_small.JPG

habanero and raspberry (I think). There were 3 raspberries

on the day, I liked them all; interesting to see the different

textures and raspberry power that people chose to use.

passion_small.JPG

Passion fruit, same cocoa butter, but one in white, one in milk,

and did some in dark. I kind of liked the milk taste the best,

but we agreed that the white looked the best.

pic1.JPG

cherry (left), raspberry (I think), salted caramel (the beans),

and forgot what the pyramids were.

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Eric -

I spent a while last night looking at YouTube - thank you for posting those, simply amazing and very helpful to go back and re-hear what was said and watch techniques.

Thank you again

Bob

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Great reports, everyone! I have a thousand questions, but I gotta start here:

Bob showing us how his death machine... er... caramel slicer works:

gallery_56799_6850_82309.jpg

See where Bob's hand is? Brave man, he must REALLY trust Art!!

gallery_56799_6850_74428.jpg

What is that thing? Rolling metal blades?


Chris Amirault

camirault@eGstaff.org

eG Ethics Signatory

Sir Luscious got gator belts and patty melts

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It's a Savage Caramel Cutter. In essence, it's several "pizza" cutters on a rolling pin. There are spacers in between each blade that can be adjusted to the size of cut that the operator wants to make. Yes, it's VERY sharp.

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It looks like you all had a great time and learned a lot. Thanks for sharing the pictures of the event, I really have enjoyed them.

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It's a Savage Caramel Cutter. In essence, it's several "pizza" cutters on a rolling pin. There are spacers in between each blade that can be adjusted to the size of cut that the operator wants to make. Yes, it's VERY sharp.

I have a variation on that which I call the "Rolling Pin of Death".


Steve Lebowitz

Doer of All Things

Steven Howard Confections

Slicing a warm slab of bacon is a lot like giving a ferret a shave. No matter how careful you are, somebody's going to get hurt - Alton Brown, "Good Eats"

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speaking of that awwwwwwwwwwwesome salted caramel ganache, um, is anyone allowed to post that recipe with credit to shotts of course? major craving...(hard to believe after only 24 hrs eh?) *darn it, hanging out with Canadians rubs off on you....eh?) :P

I'd be a little nervous posting full text to eGullet, since I don't know how copyright sensitive we are - but surely no harm can be done with an official Google Books Link

Watch out for the Canadians. Soon you'll be a socialist! B-}=


Little surprises 'round every corner, but nothing dangerous

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speaking of that awwwwwwwwwwwesome salted caramel ganache, um, is anyone allowed to post that recipe with credit to shotts of course? major craving...(hard to believe after only 24 hrs eh?) *darn it, hanging out with Canadians rubs off on you....eh?) :P

I'd be a little nervous posting full text to eGullet, since I don't know how copyright sensitive we are - but surely no harm can be done with an official Google Books Link

Watch out for the Canadians. Soon you'll be a socialist! B-}=

Always the geek! For the formula, we had to make a batch 4x the size in order to get a volume sufficient to our purpose. :smile:

And personally, I would tone down the salt a bit. It was a bit over the top for my taste.


Edited by lebowits (log)

Steve Lebowitz

Doer of All Things

Steven Howard Confections

Slicing a warm slab of bacon is a lot like giving a ferret a shave. No matter how careful you are, somebody's going to get hurt - Alton Brown, "Good Eats"

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speaking of that awwwwwwwwwwwesome salted caramel ganache, um, is anyone allowed to post that recipe with credit to shotts of course? major craving...(hard to believe after only 24 hrs eh?) *darn it, hanging out with Canadians rubs off on you....eh?) :P

I'd be a little nervous posting full text to eGullet, since I don't know how copyright sensitive we are - but surely no harm can be done with an official Google Books Link

Watch out for the Canadians. Soon you'll be a socialist! B-}=

Always the geek! For the formula, we had to make a batch 4x the size in order to get a volume sufficient to our purpose. :smile:

And personally, I would tone down the salt a bit. It was a bit over the top for my taste.

Sigh. Sounds like I would have LOVED it. FYI, basic rule of thumb is ingredient lists can't be copyrighted. Text - ie explanation of method, can.

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speaking of that awwwwwwwwwwwesome salted caramel ganache, um, is anyone allowed to post that recipe with credit to shotts of course? major craving...(hard to believe after only 24 hrs eh?) *darn it, hanging out with Canadians rubs off on you....eh?) :P

I'd be a little nervous posting full text to eGullet, since I don't know how copyright sensitive we are - but surely no harm can be done with an official Google Books Link

Watch out for the Canadians. Soon you'll be a socialist! B-}=

perfect, thanks pat :0) also, did a couple truffles at the shop today, the honey/thyme from steve's handout, and a lime/kirsch with a dried cherry in the mold. some interesting looks...but they liked them!

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I liked the salt level in Shotts caramels: it was one of my favorite ganaches of the weekend (I also loved the Caprese and the White Pepper. Turns out I don't much care for the fruit fillings.)


Chris Hennes
Director of Operations
chennes@egullet.org

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I also like the saltiness of them. Although I have certainly had comments like "uh- I think it is too salty" SO to be on the safe side, I add less. I think it also has to be the exact type of salt listed as some salts are saltier-read that somewhere...

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I liked the salt level in Shotts caramels: it was one of my favorite ganaches of the weekend (I also loved the Caprese and the White Pepper. Turns out I don't much care for the fruit fillings.)

Maybe next year we need a primer on fruit fillings?

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I think a fruit filling primer would be awesome.

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Bob, glad you liked the videos.

Great find Pat! I also thought it was salty.

But that's what great about the session: it doesn't

matter if you like it or not. It's time to experiment

without pressure of making for somebody else.

Thanks Lior for the havla!


Edited by ejw50 (log)

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Kelly - can you share your version of the pepper truffle? That piece was amazing - I'm still bragging about it to people at work and I'd love to play around with a version of it.

Thanks

Bob

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Regarding fruit centers. The Boiron web site (UK English version) has a series of PDF files which contain formulas for using the various purees in different applications. The "Chocolate Makers" piece contains standard formulas for molded chocolate centers along with firmer ganaches for slabbing. You can find the files here.

This was the formula I used for my cherry center and it worked out very well. My final piece will include a dried cherry which has been macerated in kirsch.


Steve Lebowitz

Doer of All Things

Steven Howard Confections

Slicing a warm slab of bacon is a lot like giving a ferret a shave. No matter how careful you are, somebody's going to get hurt - Alton Brown, "Good Eats"

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Kelly - would you mind sharing your caprese recipe. Surprising how great that piece is (I usually don't like sundried tomatoes). I am running low on conference samples to share with my friends; would like to trying making this one myself. So far everyone has liked it. Just one person wanted more sun dried tomatoes in her piece; everyone else thought the balance was right.

To my taste, the salted caramel was delicious, just the right amount of salt. Thanks Jim!

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Kelly - can you share your version of the pepper truffle? That piece was amazing - I'm still bragging about it to people at work and I'd love to play around with a version of it.

Thanks

Bob

I would love a pepper truffle. Me too, please.


Darienne

learn, learn, learn...

Cheers & Chocolates

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