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Non-Airbrush Alternatives for Spraying Coloured Cocoa Butter


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Hi All,

 

Amateur chocolatier and newbie to the forum here! I've been dabbling for a couple of years but recently have invested in some polycarbonate moulds and coloured cocoa butters, and my first attempts have gone well (picture below), but it'd be nice to have a way to create a full colour backing for more professional finishes.

 

I've seen the various threads about airbrush recommendations, but I've only got a small space to work with and nowhere to set up or store a compressor and the necessary equipment. It's also a considerable investment for what is currently just a hobby.

 

Can anyone recommend a non-airbrush way to create even cocoa butter coatings? It doesn't have to be perfect! I've had various thoughts such as using a spray bottle or simply filling and tipping out the moulds as one would with the shells, but I don't imagine either would be adequate.

 

 Thanks,

 

Max

 

 

e684f8b7-2745-41b6-ba80-afd37172430a.thumb.jpg.906919d3b04ce0fa6163e511ec8df648.jpg

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Filling the cavities with colored cocoa butter would take an enormous amount of c.b., and the cost would be prohibitive; the layer of c.b. would probably be too thick, depending on its viscosity when you pour it in.  The only alternative method I have ever found (to using an airbrush) is to use a fairly large paintbrush and brush in the color.  Depending on one's ability, this usually leaves streaks as the c.b. tends to run and leave empty gaps in the colored shell.

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Welcome!

 

If there was a cheap and easy way to get the same effect, far fewer of us would have invested in airbrushes ;)

 

My advice is to explore techniques other than smooth full color coverage.  Paintbrushes, sponges, finger-painting, throwing CB at molds abstract expressionist style, luster dust, contrasting shades of chocolate including fruit couvertures, magnetic molds or hand dipping plus transfer sheets ... lots of ways to get splashes of color into your assortment.

 

 

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Thanks both for the great responses! Jim, I've got a few larger brushes so I'll have an attempt with those; I'm sure with practice I'll get the hang of it. Pastrygirl, those are good suggestions, and I hadn't thought about sponges!

 

Re the Pollock style of splashing CB onto the moulds, how does one get a bright finish when using dark/milk chocolate? I found that even with bright colours, without a white backing the colour is almost completely lost. Is it worth mixing some white with the other colours before use? Is it possible to colour a small batch of dark/milk with CB before making the shells, or does the colour tend to become too diluted?

 

Thanks again :)

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1 hour ago, Choc in London said:

Thanks both for the great responses! Jim, I've got a few larger brushes so I'll have an attempt with those; I'm sure with practice I'll get the hang of it. Pastrygirl, those are good suggestions, and I hadn't thought about sponges!

 

Re the Pollock style of splashing CB onto the moulds, how does one get a bright finish when using dark/milk chocolate? I found that even with bright colours, without a white backing the colour is almost completely lost. Is it worth mixing some white with the other colours before use? Is it possible to colour a small batch of dark/milk with CB before making the shells, or does the colour tend to become too diluted?

 

Thanks again :)

 

I think it depends on the formulation of the colors you're using.  Are you mixing your own or purchasing them?  I use Chef Rubber and Roxy & Rich colors, most of which are opaque, especially metallics (silver, gold, bronze).  I pretty much never back with white.

 

You could color white chocolate, but anything mixed into milk or dark will get lost in all the brown.

Edited by pastrygirl (log)
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I've been using Squires Cocol so far, as it was easy to get a small pack of several colours; picture attached showing how the orange came out without backing, and the yellow was similarly lost.

 

Looks like Roxy&Rich are fairly cheap to acquire in the UK, so I'll definitely try them if you think they'll come out better than below! I'd love to see some of your work if you have any pictures handy for comparison. 

 

 

IMG_2670.JPG

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I am not so positive as pastrygirl about the opacity of the colored cocoa butters available.  If they contain a great deal of white (identified--if you have an ingredient list--as titanium dioxide), they will be mostly opaque.  This includes yellow, most blues, greens, and the metallic colors.  Since I hate spraying that extra layer of white (which creates a huge amount of cocoa butter sprayed into the air), I am paying closer attention to which colors absolutely need the white.  For example, I made a filling with orange flavoring and wanted the shell to be orange; I did not spray with white.  I compared two molds, one before filling with dark chocolate, one after.  The "before" one was definitely brighter.  I also find red problematic; for me it gets muddy and requires white, or at least a light color, behind it.  If I am making a red heart for Valentine's, which I will be doing all too soon, I want that red to pop.  I don't know what access you have to U.S.-made colored cocoa butters, but a company called ChocoTransferSheets has a line of opaque colors, which contain a larger amount of white, a fact that, of course, makes them lighter in color.

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@Jim D. I’m sure you’re right that colors will be much brighter with a white backing, I just meant they don’t get totally lost on dark chocolate. 
 

for example, this is green sphene on dark chocolate ECFF1D98-3D9F-40F0-89AE-6659B33CDCE0.thumb.jpeg.4cdf82cebc6b40baf3d3c74670994f26.jpeg

 

these are half splattered, half sprayed with gold

F7254FCE-14AC-438D-B1BA-A12A4D76F1EB.thumb.jpeg.1d3ccd240bdb0137d9906886fecca942.jpeg

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Thanks both for the continued help! 

 

I'll try mixing the colours with white cocoa butter or adding in some titanium dioxide, or as you've mentioned Jim looking out for specifically opaque CBs. Pastrygirl, those have come out great and it definitely seems like the colours are standing out on their own; I'll look at grabbing a couple of Roxy&Rich to test out.

 

 

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  • 4 months later...

Hello there,

 

since I do not have any airbrush equipment at the moment, I used a brush for coloring the moulds. But the result was really, really bad in combination with Roxy & Rich pre-colored cocoa butter. The coca butter was correctly tempered and in the end I used my finger to paint the moulds. 

 

Is this a problem with my brush or my cocoa butter? I used it at 28°C. All the other colors posed the same problem in the moulds. In a tutorial I watched the person painted all the moulds with a brush and the coca butter was sticking very nicely to the mould and covered it quite good unlike the translucant result I got below.

Mould.thumb.jpg.39a878ab59ed161e9c283fbdf867e0ce.jpg 

 

As you can see the tempering should not have been the problem, since they come out very shiny.

 

Red.thumb.jpg.34b7bb7636c630aaeb86b7464484ddc6.jpgCopper.thumb.jpg.1b1f2361d35750f7a3bb377da98e7715.jpgBlue.thumb.jpg.6d1185dd6fdc9856efa40ce96eec726c.jpgRed2.thumb.jpg.e862c310896eb7e012fa420704e29f10.jpgYellow.thumb.jpg.57966c47e3f950064944cbd519f711db.jpg

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