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Kerry Beal

Santa's Spectactular Tonawanda Workshop

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1 hour ago, patris said:

 

I do. All credit for the technique goes to @Chocolot, who posted it at length here somewhere. White chocolate, vacuum sealed (I do it in 500 g packages), pressure cooked 2 packages at a time for 90 minutes in my Instant Pot. You will think you have ruined it but it will thin out some as it cools. Add cocoa butter to thin out further - I usually add around 20 percent of the weight of the chocolate - and temper as usual. Works great every time.

Well that sounds doable!  How much water do you put in the Instant Pot? Do you place the packages of white chocolate on a trivet? Natural release or quick release?

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9 hours ago, curls said:

Well that sounds doable!  How much water do you put in the Instant Pot? Do you place the packages of white chocolate on a trivet? Natural release or quick release?

 

8 ounces of water, chocolate on trivet, high pressure, quick release. I always double-bag the chocolate as insurance against a bad seal. I often do several packages over the course of a day, leave them sealed up, and store them with my other chocolate. Takes several hours in a melter to get it to a stage at which it is ready to temper, and usually requires an immersion blender to un-lump it, but I temper lots more than I need so I generally have a good quantity ready to use.

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Patty

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@patris

 

what sir of plastic do you use that can stand up to those temps for the carmalized white chocolate?

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57 minutes ago, rotuts said:

@patris

 

what sir of plastic do you use that can stand up to those temps for the carmalized white chocolate?

 

I use regular Foodsaver bags (no VacMaster here!) ... and now I am wondering whether that”s a good idea 🤭

 

They do withstand the pressure (cooking) with no discernible ill effects though.


Edited by patris (log)

Patty

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Canning jars should work if you don’t want to use foodsaver bags.

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And here we are back again!

 

I arrived around 10 am and took a look around at what @patris had accomplished in preparation for tomorrow, 

 

 

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Batches of caramelized white chocolate.

 

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crispy cereal marshmallows (Bravetart)  - little crispy bits for bark and just munching upon.

 

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Caramelized rice krispies (Michael Laiskonis)

 

 

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Batches of vanilla, peppermint and cinnamon marshmallows.

 

This is a small drop in the bucket of work that has been done to prepare!

 

 

 

 

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Lunch today at My Tomato Pie.

 

Bowls of Tomato Basil soup.

 

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Cobb salad

 

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Pizza Salad

 

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Rather odd way to serve tea

 

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Edited by Kerry Beal (log)
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That @patris!  She is such an overachiever. It all looks so good  — even caramelized rice krispies! I am not a fan of rice krispies But I can certainly see me snacking my way through these.  Looking forward to what tomorrow brings. 

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Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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Just now, Anna N said:

That @patris!  She is such an overachiever. It all looks so good  — even caramelized rice krispies! I am not a fan of rice krispies But I can certainly see me snacking my way through these.  Looking forward to what tomorrow brings. 

I'll be bringing you some of the caramelized rice crispy and cereal marshmallow bark!

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3 minutes ago, Anna N said:

That @patris!  She is such an overachiever. It all looks so good  — even caramelized rice krispies! I am not a fan of rice krispies But I can certainly see me snacking my way through these.  Looking forward to what tomorrow brings. 

 

Those Rice Krispies are something else - brutally moreish.

 

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Patty

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So I have had the best of intentions to photograph and post my activities over the last few days, but as always it takes @Kerry Beal to get me from thoughts to actions.

 

It’s hard to believe this is the fourth year of this event. The first year, my mother was gravely ill and, unbeknownst to us, was in the last weeks of her life (she passed away New Year’s Eve 2016) - that weekend and the weeks leading up to it was a weird blur of stress and distress about my mother’s illness, days and nights spent in nursing home and hospital, and genuine excitement about hosting the workshop. I have never really enjoyed the holidays, but this has become something I look forward to all year. Not only do I get a little extra time to visit with Kerry, I get to give some of my nearest and dearest the chance to have a little holiday fun and get some of their gift giving done at the same time.

 

Since that first year I have learned loads of lessons - some larger life lessons to be sure, but mostly lessons about how to make this event more special for my peeps and more sane for myself. First lesson: give myself more time to prepare! I am lucky to have a job that gives me an enormous paid time off allotment, and I always find myself with some time to burn at the end of the year. Fortunately, my bank of time this year coincided with an absence of deadlines and so I was able to take Thursday and Friday off to prepare. This enabled me to get more done, but mostly because I kept adding to my to-do list!

 

I did manage to get a few Christmas decorations up:

 

 

 

 

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Patty

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And then I made some confections. Kerry posted most of them, but the one thing people want the most every year is peppermint bark. Apparently mine is tasty - I have requests for a total of about 20 pounds of it so far and will likely need to make more:

 

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There is another Cambro full of peppermint bark under this one.

 

There are also 30 dozen peanut butter meltaways, some plain and some with feuilletine mixed in, but I neglected to photograph those.

 

in other food news, when Kerry arrived she was bearing this gorgeous pannetone (in gorgeous packaging) sent along by @Alleguede (thank you so much, Rodney!) that will certainly add a little sweetness to my holidays:

 

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Patty

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Oooh!  One of my favorite holiday events is about to happen!  

 

I am in love with these - your beautiful work?

11 minutes ago, patris said:

 

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Just now, blue_dolphin said:

Oooh!  One of my favorite holiday events is about to happen!  

 

I am in love with these - your beautiful work?

 

 

Thanks! They are - copied from a potter on Instagram. I have some work to do on technique and glaze choices, but I can see a forest of these in my future.

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Patty

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Well, I somehow missed last year completely.  I'm skipping along reading and "liking" everything and suddenly realize that it all said December 2018!  So, I finished reading it all, but didn't hit the like button anymore!  I am enchanted.

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Cool! :)

Tonawanda — about 150 miles from my place.

My great-grandfather was born there.

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~Martin :)

I try to find the good food in every situation!

Unsupervised, rebellious, radical agrarian experimenter, minimalist penny-pincher, self-reliant homesteader, and adventurous cook. Crotchety, cantankerous, terse, curmudgeon, non-conformist, and contrarian who questions everything!

The best thing about a vegetable garden is all the meat you can hunt and trap out of it!

 

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These are amazing.  Can I ask where you got them?  Asking for a friend 😁 (who looks a lot like me).

 

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13 hours ago, Kerry Beal said:

IMG_9103.thumb.JPG.289b7a277176a8a2347a1c31fc31cc2d.JPG

 

Caramelized rice krispies (Michael Laiskonis)

Interesting! Have you used the caramelized rice before... how long does it stay crispy if you use it in a chocolate bark or leave it on top of a confection? If you used it in a ganache would it go soggy ( I’m guessing it would)? I might have to play with this!  


 @patris did you make the David Lebovitz peanuts this year? Looks like it will be a wonderful event!

 


Edited by curls (log)

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1 hour ago, lemniscate said:

 

 

These are amazing.  Can I ask where you got them?  Asking for a friend 😁 (who looks a lot like me).

 

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Thanks! I do love them. I think I ordered them from Houzz.con, but if you search “climbing men wall art” you should find them pretty quickly. The LED lights were my addition for the holidays, though.

 

 


Edited by patris (log)
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Patty

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11 minutes ago, curls said:

Interesting! Have you used the caramelized rice before... how long does it stay crispy if you use it in a chocolate bark or leave it on top of a confection? If you used it in a ganache would it go soggy ( I’m guessing it would)?

 

 

I haven’t used them in anything except meltaways and barks, in which they contribute a wonderful caramelly crispiness. I do imagine if they sat out long enough or were incorporated into something with a fair bit of moisture, they would eventually lose their crisp.

 

Nope - no peanuts this year. The Rice Krispies are so easy (unless you try to do them on a Paragon with a shitty pan, which is a story for @Kerry Beal to tell...) and so high volume that I haven”t bothered with the peanuts in some time.


Edited by patris (log)
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Patty

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Kerry has run off to Trader Joe’s to browse around and to pick up some freeze dried raspberries that were not on the shelf yesterday but were promised to be restocked overnight. She is lucky to be sparing herself the noise of my portable dishwasher, currently jet-engining its way through its quick-wash cycle, which takes a couple hours. In the meantime I have been indulging my compulsion for organizing and reorganizing to get ready for the elves at the stroke of noon.

 

 

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Edited by patris (log)
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Patty

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