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Jaymes

Troubleshooting cocoa powder for ice cream

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Perhaps you are right and the blender is not needed. After all, locust bean gum and carrageenan lambda ΑΡΕ fully dispersed in the water.

 

No I didn't try to taste the syrup, but it seems like a good idea, I will try it.

 

I actually think that the word gritty may not be the 100% correct word here, I can better describe it as sandy, but only in the aftertaste, like my tongue stays covered with sand.

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I have just made Devil's Food Chocolate Ice Cream by Lebovitz in which he uses cocoa powder. I used Cocao Barry Extra Bruit and have found no problem with grittiness from the cocoa powder.  I also used half & half instead of whole milk and made the creme anglaise in my Vitamix instead of a saucepan over a flame. This recipe is to die for. 

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3 hours ago, Soupcon said:

I have just made Devil's Food Chocolate Ice Cream by Lebovitz in which he uses cocoa powder. I used Cocao Barry Extra Bruit and have found no problem with grittiness from the cocoa powder.  I also used half & half instead of whole milk and made the creme anglaise in my Vitamix instead of a saucepan over a flame. This recipe is to die for. 

I've made David Lebovitz' Aztec 'Hot' Chocolate Ice Cream many times...mostly without the chile powder for wussy guests...but this recipe sounds...what?...over the top.  I'm making it next.  His earlier recipe calls for the same amount of chocolate but only 6 tablespoons of cocoa.     Yes, I know there are other differences also but the chocolate count is Wow! 

Oh, I've never had any grittiness from my cocoa powder in the ice cream. 

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I'm betting that Askinosie just isn't able to mill the cocoa as finely as the bigger industrial manufacturers. This is likely to be a problem for anyone trying to make chocolate ice cream with single-origin cocoa powders. There just aren't many of them, and they mostly seem to be available from small artisanal chocolate makers, who would likely have lower-powered milling equipment.

 

I wrote to the people at Match Chocolate about this. They advertise SO cocoa powders, and warn in the descriptions that they're milled coarser than industrial cocoas. I asked if they were coarse enough to affect the texture of ice cream, and they said absolutely. They're hoping to upbgrade their equipment at some point, but it doesn't sound like any time soon.

 

This is an issue for me, since I like to feature distinctive main ingredients in my ice creams. I'm much less interested in generic tasting-blends than in pure ingredients with interesting origin flavors. For chocolate, this mostly means using couverture, but this choice comes with a litany of texture challenges from the cocoa butter. 

 

I'm planning to start a new round of chocolate ice cream experiments soon. The approach I've been using, which needs a lot of work, is to mix an SO couverture (like Cluizel Villa Gracinda) with a good quality non-SO cocoa (Cluizel or Valrhona). The idea is to get some of the distinctiveness from the couverture, but to not use so much that texture problems are too noticeable. 

 

I'd like to switch to 100% SO cocoa powders, but don't know of any right now that are suitable. Callebaut advertises some on their commercial site; I haven't yet figured out how good they are or how to get my hands on them. Also I believe that non-Dutched cocoa would be ideal in ice cream. Unfortunately these aren't so popular with the great better chocolate makers. It would be nice to see some variety here.

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From what I understand, cocoa powder will most likely be very coarse unless the manufacturer is using very expensive equipment.

The reason that chocolate is so smooth, is that the cocoa powder in it, has been refined for hours with the other ingredients in order to be less than n microns (where n is less than the minimum diameter the human tongue can understand).

The cocoa powder that derives from the separation of cocoa liquor and cocoa butter, is not refined so much.

 

That is why I want to try either the Callebaut low fluidity chocolates, or the Valrhona P125, because they have less cocoa butter so I will not need cocoa powder.

On the other hand, Callebaut states that they also sell cocoa powder in small quantities.

One would think that since Callebaut is selling it in small quantities, it may be used by the common user that does not have expensive equipment at home.

So, perhaps it is very well refined.

 

P.S. Paul I really love your website!

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3 hours ago, kostbill said:

From what I understand, cocoa powder will most likely be very coarse unless the manufacturer is using very expensive equipment.

Yeah, I'm pretty sure that's the case. Last month I visited Michael Laiskonis's chocolate lab at ICE, and just about the only piece of equipment missing from this extremely shiny playground was a mill for grinding cocoa powder. They have a 100-ton hydraulic press to separate the cocoa solids, but nothing to refine them. So if you're wondering what to get them for christmas ... 

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8 minutes ago, paulraphael said:

Yeah, I'm pretty sure that's the case. Last month I visited Michael Laiskonis's chocolate lab at ICE, and just about the only piece of equipment missing from this extremely shiny playground was a mill for grinding cocoa powder. They have a 100-ton hydraulic press to separate the cocoa solids, but nothing to refine them. So if you're wondering what to get them for christmas ... 

He does have a lot of toys doesn't he?

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Paul, I have a question, you wrote: "For chocolate, this mostly means using couverture, but this choice comes with a litany of texture challenges from the cocoa butter".

How does the cocoa butter affects the texture?

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3 hours ago, kostbill said:

Paul, I have a question, you wrote: "For chocolate, this mostly means using couverture, but this choice comes with a litany of texture challenges from the cocoa butter".

How does the cocoa butter affects the texture?

 

Cocoa butter is hard at room temp and even harder frozen. Cocoa butter is what makes a chocolate bar solid. 

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1 minute ago, pastrygirl said:

 

Cocoa butter is hard at room temp and even harder frozen. Cocoa butter is what makes a chocolate bar solid. 

Indeed, but is this what Paul means? English is not my mother tongue, but I would think that this is not an issue of texture but hardness.

Please correct me if I am wrong.

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9 hours ago, kostbill said:

Indeed, but is this what Paul means? English is not my mother tongue, but I would think that this is not an issue of texture but hardness.

Please correct me if I am wrong.

 

Yes, it's exactly what I mean. I like chocolate ice cream with a strong chocolate flavor, which means using lots of chocolate. And this means adding lots of cocoa butter. It can make the ice cream too hard. If you take the usual steps with sugars to soften the ice cream, you can get a kind pudding-like texture that I'm not thrilled with. 

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6 minutes ago, paulraphael said:

 

Yes, it's exactly what I mean. I like chocolate ice cream with a strong chocolate flavor, which means using lots of chocolate. And this means adding lots of cocoa butter. It can make the ice cream too hard. If you take the usual steps with sugars to soften the ice cream, you can get a kind pudding-like texture that I'm not thrilled with. 

I see, I would imagine that the pudding texture is more or less due to the stabilisers.

From your blog I see you are using guar gum and carrageenan lambda, which are capable of producing the pudding effect.

I am making eggless crème brulé with carrageenan lambda and it is amazing by the way.

 

Anyway, so now you have two choices:

- either use  lot of chocolate with the pudding texture effect, or

- use cocoa powder with a sand texture effect.

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14 hours ago, kostbill said:

I see, I would imagine that the pudding texture is more or less due to the stabilisers.

From your blog I see you are using guar gum and carrageenan lambda, which are capable of producing the pudding effect.

I am making eggless crème brulé with carrageenan lambda and it is amazing by the way.

 

Anyway, so now you have two choices:

- either use  lot of chocolate with the pudding texture effect, or

- use cocoa powder with a sand texture effect.

 

I don't believe it's about stabilizers. I think it's combination of cocoa butter (hardening the fats) and extra glucose (softening the frozen portion). 

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6 minutes ago, paulraphael said:

 

I don't believe it's about stabilizers. I think it's combination of cocoa butter (hardening the fats) and extra glucose (softening the frozen portion). 

This is a nice field for experiments.

I ordered the Valrhona P125 (https://inter.valrhona.com/en/our-products/couverture-chocolate/p125-coeur-de-guanaja/bag-beans) and from next week I will start experimenting.

Although I am afraid that without cocoa powder I will not find the strong chocolate flavor I enjoy.

Next step is to order the Callebaut cocoa powder. At least this is cheaper.

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So I made some chocolate sorbet with the Valrhona P125 (https://inter.valrhona.com/en/our-products/couverture-chocolate/p125-coeur-de-guanaja/bag-beans).

For a first experiment, I just omitted the cocoa powder.

 

I don't really know if the result was successful because the mixture would not set in the ice cream maker.

I guess it may be the small cocoa butter amount.

The result was that I had some ice crystals. Perhaps I will double the amount of locust bean gum.

 

Anyway, about the flavor, it is more chocolaty indeed, even without the cocoa. However this effect may not only be due to the high cocoa solids amount, but because the low cocoa butter amount is not able to mute the bright chocolate flavor.

Any ideas on how to make the ice cream to have more body without cocoa butter? Perhaps double guar?

 

My next experiment (perhaps today) is going to be chocolate ice cream. 

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11 hours ago, kostbill said:

So I made some chocolate sorbet with the Valrhona P125 (https://inter.valrhona.com/en/our-products/couverture-chocolate/p125-coeur-de-guanaja/bag-beans).

For a first experiment, I just omitted the cocoa powder.

 

That's an interesting product. It appears to have about 70% the fat content of regular Guanaja. I wonder if other companies make similar versions of their couverture.

 

Here's a sample recipe on Valrhona's site using that chocolate: https://inter.valrhona.com/en/by-your-side/chocolate-recipes/glace-au-lait-p125-coeur-de-guanaja

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Yes there is also the low fluidity series of Callebaut:

https://www.callebaut.com/en-GB/chocolate-video/technique/fluidity

The higher the fluidity, the more the percentage of cocoa butter.

 

I also ordered the L-60-40 (https://www.callebaut.com/en-OC/chocolate-cocoa-nuts/l-60-40nv/l-60-40nv),

which is the lowest fluidity (actually they arrived today at work) and I will try this chocolate as well.

 

The Valrhona ice cream with P125 is the one I am planning to do.

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I'm compiling a list of single origin cocoa providers. 

 

If anyone wants to add, please do. Right now this only includes brands with US distribution; I think there are a few who distribute only in Europe.

 

 

 

Callebaut / Bensdorp

 

https://bcfmpreview.barry-callebaut.com/products/single-origin-powders?segment=cereals

 

http://www.bensdorp.com/natural-são-tomé

 

(many regions including a sau tomé natural)

 

 

Askinosie

 

https://www.askinosie.com/single-origin-natural-cocoa-powder.html

(tanzania)

 

 

 

KYYA

 

https://www.kyyachocolate.com/products/cocoa-powder-4-oz

(ecuador)

 

 

Omanhene

 

http://omanhene.3dcartstores.com/Cocoa-Powder-Natural-Cocoa-Powder_p_5.html

(Ghana)

 

 

Map Chocolate

 

https://www.mapchocolate.com/holiday-baking-supplies/craft-cocoa-powder-sampler-set

(Honduras)

 

 

Match Chocolate

(warns that grain size is too large … not smooth)

 

https://www.matchchocolate.com/current-offerings/

(several origins)

 

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