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New to confectionery


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Hi,

I might not join into the debates here as much because I am just discovering the world of tempering and making confectionery, but I've found this forum helpful a lot of times now since I have started - so I decided to join :) and post some questions along the way xD

I am from a EU country in central Europe, so a lot of products I keep hearing about will be quite difficult to come by, so hopefully I meet some other members from this area that have been here long enough to maybe help point me in the right directions.

 

I would like to say I am NEW as it gets. I've tempered chocolate a few weeks ago for the first time after getting an idea to coat my honey biscuits in it xD And it felt like such a success when I actually managed to do it :) (I used seeding method).

A few dozen YT videos on chocolate tempering and confectionery later, I discovered hot chocolate bombs! XD First time I've seen it and thought it was a brilliant idea. So a few weeks later, here I was with my 60 mm silicone domes, and a polycarbonate mould for bonbons.

 

I bought my first "better chocolates" - some Callebaut 811, Cacao Barry Ocoa and CB Zephyr. I thought I'd use white chocolate to mix in natural coloring - think that will work? I know people use cocoa butter, but I couldn't find it (less so colored cocoa butter).

 

I made my first ganache from 811 (1:1) and caramel to fill the chocolate bombs with.

 

I had such fun making them. Here they are :)

IMG_20220103_203159_307.thumb.jpg.5f567f79f079af42253a36cd98695953.jpg

The shell is made from a "less expensive" chocolate. Since my thermometer started acting up, I didn't dare to attempt tempering other ones.

The chocolate bombs were so fun to watch melt away xD

 

I haven't been brave or not lazy enough to try make pralines yet.

Not sure how I'm gonna get about it since it seems like such a messy business - I'll probably use parchment paper for dipping out chocolate.

 

Oh, one thing did happen to me on numerous accounts while filling the silicone moulds, I've noticed either the chocolate doesnt set for a very long time, or I mix it so long that I can feel it start to be more and more viscous (a few days later I found out that maybe I had a case of overcrystalisation?), and I had to run back and forth to the stove to heat it back up, back to the table to make the moulds...

I'm still not sure how to get it in proper temper, or maybe the chocolate doesn't contain enough cocoa butter?

Whatever it was, I'll soon get a new thermometer and hopefully I get better results next time.

 

Oh, one important question (if anyone is still reading x)) - when you temper chocolate with the seeds, is there a need to take the unmelted seeds out once they don't melt anymore, or is it just so they don't get in the way? I thought maybe the unmelted chocolate might have been making my chocolate over crystallised? 

 

Well, I can't wait for my next chocolate attempts :) I will post pictures.oh, and if anyone can share if coloring white chocolate is doable with natural powders, I'll be grateful!

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2 hours ago, Yoda said:

I've noticed either the chocolate doesnt set for a very long time, or I mix it so long that I can feel it start to be more and more viscous (a few days later I found out that maybe I had a case of overcrystalisation?), and I had to run back and forth to the stove to heat it back up, back to the table to make the moulds...

 

Welcome!

 

Yes, that's normal chocolate behavior representing less or more crystallization, having to warm it back up is totally normal. 

 

 

2 hours ago, Yoda said:

when you temper chocolate with the seeds, is there a need to take the unmelted seeds out once they don't melt anymore, or is it just so they don't get in the way? I thought maybe the unmelted chocolate might have been making my chocolate over crystallised? 

 

Yes, do remove any unmelted seed.

 

2 hours ago, Yoda said:

 if anyone can share if coloring white chocolate is doable with natural powders, I'll be grateful!

 

Any color added to chocolate or cocoa butter should be fat-soluble.  water soluble colors may not mix in properly.

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Thank you ElsieD and pastrygirl for the welcome :)

 

22 hours ago, pastrygirl said:

Yes, that's normal chocolate behavior representing less or more crystallization, having to warm it back up is totally normal. 

I wanted to say I've noticed the chocolate either doesn't seem to set even after 5 min (test on spoon or parchment) or it starts solidifying really fast. Maybe my temperatures are just off? (I did have to go by feel since my thermometer started going crazy that day) I'm getting a new thermometer soon, so can't wait to try it again then :)

22 hours ago, pastrygirl said:

Yes, do remove any unmelted seed.

What happens if you don't remove them? Do wrong crystals start forming? I probably should remove them before warming the chocolate back up to working temp, right?

22 hours ago, pastrygirl said:

Any color added to chocolate or cocoa butter should be fat-soluble.  water soluble colors may not mix in properly.

They are fat soluble natural colors, I just wasn't sure how it would work since everyone colors cocoa butter instead of white chocolate :) I haven't tried it yet

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Hello @Yoda, I would eat those chocolate monsters in a minute! Yum. I don't make chocolate but I like to read about it.

 

Here on eG there are many great folk. Some are very knowledgeable, some are very funny, and sometimes, people are a bit of both. Welcome to eGullet.

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5 hours ago, Yoda said:

Thank you ElsieD and pastrygirl for the welcome :)

 

I wanted to say I've noticed the chocolate either doesn't seem to set even after 5 min (test on spoon or parchment) or it starts solidifying really fast. Maybe my temperatures are just off? (I did have to go by feel since my thermometer started going crazy that day) I'm getting a new thermometer soon, so can't wait to try it again then :)

What happens if you don't remove them? Do wrong crystals start forming? I probably should remove them before warming the chocolate back up to working temp, right?

They are fat soluble natural colors, I just wasn't sure how it would work since everyone colors cocoa butter instead of white chocolate :) I haven't tried it yet

 

The trick is finding the sweet spot in between 'doesn't set' and 'sets really fast'.  It should set pretty quickly, and you do need to work quickly.  It takes practice.

 

If you don't remove the excess seed it continues to be seed and leads to over-crystallization.  Plus it gets in the way.  You might be able to work around chunks if you're dipping, but you really don't want chunks when molding. 

 

It will take much more color to tint white chocolate since it is already opaque white from the milk and sugar.  You can do it, but I don't think you'll get bright colors.

Edited by pastrygirl (log)
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7 hours ago, pastrygirl said:

If you don't remove the excess seed it continues to be seed and leads to over-crystallization.  Plus it gets in the way.  You might be able to work around chunks if you're dipping, but you really don't want chunks when molding.

Ooh, that's why the whole chocolate in the bowl started clumping! xD I wanted to remove them, but I chopped the chocolate too finely so it seemed like an impossible task. I'll try adding bigger chunks next time when using chocolate bar, I hope that will work too. Maybe finely chopped for starters, and then bigger chunks so I can fish them out later xD

7 hours ago, pastrygirl said:

It will take much more color to tint white chocolate since it is already opaque white from the milk and sugar.  You can do it, but I don't think you'll get bright colors.

Oh I see..hmm..well, I'll try and see how it looks for starters. I did find some cocoa butter from Callebaut, repacked into smaller zip bags of 500 g and maybe I'll get that. Seems like a lot for an enthusiast that only needs some for colouring though x)

If I decide to get the cocoa butter and color it, can I reserve leftovers for next time (not sure whether pigment (fruit/vegetables origin) impairs it's shelf life or not. If you or anyone else happen to know by any chance? I was thinking maybe making 150 g or so at once and then store it in a bottle or pour it onto parchment and form a block to store it for future use.

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16 hours ago, Yoda said:

If I decide to get the cocoa butter and color it, can I reserve leftovers for next time

 

yeah, totally

 

Natural fruit pigments might be less stable over time or susceptible to scorching when heating but for example Chef Rubber has CB with natural color or freeze dried fruit, so it must work?  (I have not used either product line)  https://chefrubber.com/cb/

 

30-50 grams per color should be plenty to start playing with

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On 1/5/2022 at 12:13 AM, TdeV said:

Hello @Yoda, I would eat those chocolate monsters in a minute! Yum. I don't make chocolate but I like to read about it.

 

Here on eG there are many great folk. Some are very knowledgeable, some are very funny, and sometimes, people are a bit of both. Welcome to eGullet.

Hello TdeV, thank you for your welcoming :)

Those chocolate monsters are actually meant to be drank - you put one in a mug of full hot milk (or put it in the mug and pour hot milk over it) and it melts away into a hot chocolate drink :)

I just found out about these recently and wanted to try and make them instantly lol! It's so fun watching them melt - when they split apart, the marshmallows float on top and it's just a spectacular and very fun way to make hot chocolate, hehehe.

Oh, and those monsters were supposed to be reindeer xD haha. I initially wanted to make little red chocolate noses for them too, but it proved enough work for the day so I decide to leave them as they were :)

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Funny you should mention, @Yoda. I recently bought some of those balls from my farmer's market. I knew they were hot chocolate, but that's all I knew. There was no information about what was inside. Also, I had no idea how to prepare them. Milk or water? Microwave? How full to fill cup so that there's enough for the ball, but not to overflow?

 

So the result was less than stellar because I made some incorrect choices. And the experience was sufficiently disturbing that I haven't tried again.

 

Maybe I should go try one now. 🙃

 

Edited to add: Some instructions for newbies woulda helped.

 

 

Edited by TdeV (log)
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16 minutes ago, TdeV said:

Funny you should mention, @Yoda. I recently bought some of those balls from my farmer's market. I knew they were hot chocolate, but that's all I knew. There was no information about what was inside. Also, I had no idea how to prepare them. Milk or water? Microwave? How full to fill cup so that there's enough for the ball, but not to overflow?

 

So the result was less than stellar because I made some incorrect choices. And the experience was sufficiently disturbing that I haven't tried again.

 

Maybe I should go try one now. 🙃

 

Edited to add: Some instructions for newbies woulda helped.

 

 

Haha, I guess since they're (apparently) so trendy, maybe they didn't think there were people like you or me left, that hadn't heard of one and seen one in action xD

From my experience (drinking the 3 reindeer musketeers),the milk has to be really, really hot, then you have to stir vigorously for some time until it's all melted (maybe it will melt faster for you if it only contains powder, mine had a firm ganache and caramel from the fridge + bitter cocoa powder inside). Or I suppose you could wait for 3 or 4 min to let it soak and melt and then give it a good stir :)

The "mistake" I made when making them was I put too much filling inside a single bomb (too sweet) so I had to melt mine in 0,5 l of milk (in a high pot) and divide into two mugs after everything has melted x)

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6 hours ago, TdeV said:

I ate the third ball last night, Yoda. I think that I understand how to eat them. Unfortunately, that was my last one! 😜

Third's a lucky charm xD hehe

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