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Molded and Filled Chocolates: Troubleshooting and Techniques


rookie
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37 minutes ago, Jim D. said:

 

So you didn't try the seed method?  It's so much less messy.  Or perhaps you enjoy playing with chocolate?  😄

 

Not yet! But I will try it also, I want to learn all methods.

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Tabling chocolate to temper it doesn’t have to be messy. I took a 3 day  chocolate showpiece and bon bons class that was taught by Ewald Notter; he tempered all of the chocolate that we used for the class via tabling. In the hands of a master tabling is fast and clean. Ewald tempered huge amounts of chocolate quickly, cleanly, and effortlessly. It was amazing to learn from him and watch him work. 
 

@Rajalaif tabling is your preferred method, keep doing it and enjoy. If I recall correctly, tabling is also the method that  @Chris Hennes prefers.

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1 hour ago, curls said:

@Rajalaif tabling is your preferred method, keep doing it and enjoy. If I recall correctly, tabling is also the method that  @Chris Hennes prefers.

 

I like it because I think it's fast. I can be sloppy and get chocolate in strange places, some times - but I also want to learn the other ways so I can understand and help others.

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@curls I will never discourage anyone from doing something like tabling chocolate to temper it. Full bore ahead if you want to learn it. For many of us it is impractical to say the least. I’m definitely a novice, and I have no desire to be a professional, so doing the easiest possible thing for what is possibly the most daunting task in chocolate is what I’m about. Seeding chocolate, especially since I am taking it from the melanger is the simplest most foolproof (me being the fool) method I’ve done. I realize that there is some honor and tradition in learning the old method, but for me if the end product is the same, I’m all for easy and slightly skilled. This is coming from someone who is generally more of a traditionalist. Ultimately I’m not about screwing up a bunch of batches to learn when I get it right every time with little skill. I guess I’m a bit of an idiot, but proud of it this time.

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1 hour ago, Douglas K said:

@curls I will never discourage anyone from doing something like tabling chocolate to temper it. Full bore ahead if you want to learn it. For many of us it is impractical to say the least. I’m definitely a novice, and I have no desire to be a professional, so doing the easiest possible thing for what is possibly the most daunting task in chocolate is what I’m about. Seeding chocolate, especially since I am taking it from the melanger is the simplest most foolproof (me being the fool) method I’ve done. I realize that there is some honor and tradition in learning the old method, but for me if the end product is the same, I’m all for easy and slightly skilled. This is coming from someone who is generally more of a traditionalist. Ultimately I’m not about screwing up a bunch of batches to learn when I get it right every time with little skill. I guess I’m a bit of an idiot, but proud of it this time.

 

@Douglas K I am puzzled, why have you mentioned me? I was responding to Rajala and putting out a positive message for all who choose to temper chocolate via tabling. Temper your chocolate with whatever methods you like and that work for you. 

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3 minutes ago, GRiker said:

I’ve always wondered...how do you manage to get a puddle of chocolate back into the bowl? I have a plastic chocolate scraper. Is that what you use? 

If your marble is close to the edge of the counter you can make a quick sweep off the side into the bowl. 

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1 hour ago, GRiker said:

I’ve always wondered...how do you manage to get a puddle of chocolate back into the bowl? I have a plastic chocolate scraper. Is that what you use? 

You can see an example of getting the chocolate back into the bowl in this video at about the 1:23 timestamp.

 

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  • 3 weeks later...

For the chocolate I tempt it by adding more chocolate, in cold water or by blowing. Between 40-45 and then when it reaches 31 I use it.

In theory you have to lower it to 27 and raise it to 31 to use it ... for now I am trying with cheap chocolate and works.

Edited by Elkyfr
Wrong place, sorry. (log)
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  • 1 month later...

Hmmm, so I’m making something for Lunar New Years, any advice on making a lotus ganache? I was thinking lotus and salted duck egg to replicate a moon cake paired with a separate oolong bonbon but I’m wondering if anyones worked with similar consistency/stability wise

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7 hours ago, Jonathan said:

Hmmm, so I’m making something for Lunar New Years, any advice on making a lotus ganache? I was thinking lotus and salted duck egg to replicate a moon cake paired with a separate oolong bonbon but I’m wondering if anyones worked with similar consistency/stability wise

 

i haven't made a lotus ganache, and the root ganaches i make haven't really gone into chocolates vs plated desserts, but you can always take something like this, roast or braise until tender, and just stick blender it with some white chocolate until it's together. the overall amount of water will be variable so texture and longevity will depend on ratios and cooking method, etc., etc.

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That might work? I'm thinking maybe puree it and reduce it and then fold it through a ganache in a similar manner to a nut paste? I just wonder if the flavour concentration is strong enough... I'm gonna do a paired set of bars (Moon Cake and Pu-Erh Tea). For the tea I'm thinking maybe some roasted puffed rice as a textural layer in the bottom, would I mix it with some chocolate to prevent it going soggy from contact with the ganache or so long as the water activity in the ganache is low enough will it stay crisp for at least 2 weeks?

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I’m really puzzled by some dull or white flecks that appears on some of my chocolates on almost every batch I make. By the look of it, do you think it’s because my cocoa butter gets somehow out of temper when I paint, even though I have a high accuracy thermometer in my cocoa butter the whole time. I keep it around 28.5C. 

 

My molds are always between 18 and 19. I have to say it happens the most often with that technique. (Drop of cocoa butter dispersed by the airstream of an airbrush).


Does it happen to any of you?

What would you bet the issue is?

 

It’s getting very annoying and I’m not sure what to do because most of them are perfectly fine.
 

Also, I wash and polish my molds with 94% alcohol at every use.

36D6EA8C-3CA4-4EFC-9731-9AD192CEF94B.jpeg

Edited by Muscadelle (log)
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I had something similar happen in a batch of mine but it was a really high fat content filling (hazelnut) so initially I suspected that. However I’ve been taking the step to polish again after the alcohol polish incase of residue and it seems to have made it a non-issue so I don’t know which one to attribute it to? You’re taking a lot more steps to keep your cocoa butter in temper than I am so I don’t know if it’s that

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7 hours ago, Jonathan said:

I had something similar happen in a batch of mine but it was a really high fat content filling (hazelnut) so initially I suspected that. However I’ve been taking the step to polish again after the alcohol polish incase of residue and it seems to have made it a non-issue so I don’t know which one to attribute it to? You’re taking a lot more steps to keep your cocoa butter in temper than I am so I don’t know if it’s that

Thanks Jonathan! Those are only the shells so I know for sure the problem is not caused by fillings. I double polish as well! haha glad to see that i'm not so over-zealous after all :P

 

I'm wondering if maybe I'm keeping my cocoa butter at a too low temperature. maybe I should keep it more around 30C? I'm using my notes from my Melissa Coppel workshop, but maybe there's something i forgot to write down?

Anybody know enough about Crystals and tempering curve of cocoa butter? I'm wondering if the flecks looks like the result of over tempered CB or maybe CB that went out of temper?

Edited by Muscadelle (log)
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Hello! I apologize if this is the wrong place to post this, but I tried making some bonbons over the past couple days and they turned out a disaster (I've never worked with chocolate before) in the unmolding process.

IMG_0102.thumb.jpg.9bbc5de35d854116f826db8e8dddb7fc.jpg

My bonbons were comprised of a ruby chocolate shell with a matcha ganache filling. Here was my process:

 

1. Temper ruby chocolate and white chocolate. I used a microwave for the big temp jumps and a hair dryer for finer increments, and to maintain working temp.

2. Re-temper both because I wasn't sure if I did it right (I used parchment paper and a knife to test, but was unsure of myself)

3. The re-temper gave me the same results, so I decided to just go with it. Each temper took me somewhere between 30-40 minutes, waiting for the chocolate to cool down to the low point on the temperature curve.

4. Buffed the mold with a cotton ball, applied some luster dust to the cavities using a brush. I didn't heat the mold at all, so I presume it was around 72 F.

5. Filled the mold with ruby chocolate, did the stuff I see on YouTube and whatnot to empty the mold. I left the mold on its side as per Savour's videos (why does she do that?). I think in the future I will leave it upside down.

6. I don't think it's important, but the ganache was made with (tempered) white chocolate, butter, and matcha powder, emulsified in a vitamix. I piped it when it was at room temperature.

7. I waited 24 hours for my ganache to set, then capped the molds using the leftover chocolate from the shell, seeded with callets. I used a sheet of acetate to seal the back.

8. I waited another 3 or so hours after capping to try to unmold the chocolates.

 

Some notes/questions:

 

The chocolates appear to be well-tempered. They're very firm, smooth/glossy, and snappy. However, when I let the leftover ruby chocolate from the initial casting set (as a slab on some parchment paper), there was significant streaking and fat blooming. There wasn't any streaking or blooming in the actual bon bon shells, though (that I could see).

 

I let the chocolates set at room temperature, around 72 F. 

 

In my desperate Google searches, I've read that it's highly suggested to make sure the molds are within 5 or so degrees Fahrenheit of the chocolate's working temp before filling. I'll try that next time.

 

I also read that you can unmold the shells before filling, just to check that they're actually unmoldable. While this will ease my anxiety in my future attempts, does this affect the finished product at all?

 

How do I go about cleaning the mold? I'm thinking I just use a hot water stream to melt the chocolate/ganache that's stuck in the cavities, then re-polish the mold.

 

Out of the 21 chocolates in the mold, one managed to make it out in one piece, and it's in pretty good condition, which makes me wonder why the other 20 failed to unmold so miserably.

 

Thank you in advance!

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So disappointing!  I haven't worked with Ruby, so I don't know if it acts any differently from 'regular' chocolate.  Was it a blend of Ruby and white?   For me, 72F is bordering on too warm, I prefer my kitchen (and my molds) around 65F.   

 

To clean your molds, put them in the freezer for 15+ minutes to force the remaining chocolate to contract then bang it out and wash the molds as usual. 

Edited by pastrygirl (log)
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3 hours ago, Sehkai said:

Hello! I apologize if this is the wrong place to post this, but I tried making some bonbons over the past couple days and they turned out a disaster (I've never worked with chocolate before) in the unmolding process.

IMG_0102.thumb.jpg.9bbc5de35d854116f826db8e8dddb7fc.jpg

My bonbons were comprised of a ruby chocolate shell with a matcha ganache filling. Here was my process:

 

1. Temper ruby chocolate and white chocolate. I used a microwave for the big temp jumps and a hair dryer for finer increments, and to maintain working temp.

2. Re-temper both because I wasn't sure if I did it right (I used parchment paper and a knife to test, but was unsure of myself)

3. The re-temper gave me the same results, so I decided to just go with it. Each temper took me somewhere between 30-40 minutes, waiting for the chocolate to cool down to the low point on the temperature curve.

4. Buffed the mold with a cotton ball, applied some luster dust to the cavities using a brush. I didn't heat the mold at all, so I presume it was around 72 F.

5. Filled the mold with ruby chocolate, did the stuff I see on YouTube and whatnot to empty the mold. I left the mold on its side as per Savour's videos (why does she do that?). I think in the future I will leave it upside down.

6. I don't think it's important, but the ganache was made with (tempered) white chocolate, butter, and matcha powder, emulsified in a vitamix. I piped it when it was at room temperature.

7. I waited 24 hours for my ganache to set, then capped the molds using the leftover chocolate from the shell, seeded with callets. I used a sheet of acetate to seal the back.

8. I waited another 3 or so hours after capping to try to unmold the chocolates.

 

Some notes/questions:

 

The chocolates appear to be well-tempered. They're very firm, smooth/glossy, and snappy. However, when I let the leftover ruby chocolate from the initial casting set (as a slab on some parchment paper), there was significant streaking and fat blooming. There wasn't any streaking or blooming in the actual bon bon shells, though (that I could see).

 

I let the chocolates set at room temperature, around 72 F. 

 

In my desperate Google searches, I've read that it's highly suggested to make sure the molds are within 5 or so degrees Fahrenheit of the chocolate's working temp before filling. I'll try that next time.

 

I also read that you can unmold the shells before filling, just to check that they're actually unmoldable. While this will ease my anxiety in my future attempts, does this affect the finished product at all?

 

How do I go about cleaning the mold? I'm thinking I just use a hot water stream to melt the chocolate/ganache that's stuck in the cavities, then re-polish the mold.

 

Out of the 21 chocolates in the mold, one managed to make it out in one piece, and it's in pretty good condition, which makes me wonder why the other 20 failed to unmold so miserably.

 

Thank you in advance!

Welcome @Sehkai. You have early on discovered what we all know - chocolate is the boss and she will take every opportunity to teach you that!

 

Couple of thoughts - did you put the molds in the fridge for a bit after pouring the shells? Do you think your shell might have been too thin? It kind of looks like the shell didn't retract from the mold which the initial fridge step might have helped with. 

 

I'm a fan of putting my molds on the short edge after scraping - opinions vary considerably on this one - but I think it gives a nicer back.

 

 

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 2/21/2021 at 4:35 AM, Jonathan said:

Now that there’s no upcoming events I’ve had a bit more of a chance to play. Tiramisu cats for example, vanilla marscapone mousse and a tia maria and espresso ganache

 

Your splatter is very nicely done, more even than most people (including me) get from a toothbrush or a spray gun.  What did you use?

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24 minutes ago, Jim D. said:

 

Your splatter is very nicely done, more even than most people (including me) get from a toothbrush or a spray gun.  What did you use?

Just a normal toothbrush, although I flick with a gloved finger and at a reasonable distance, seems to get smaller, more evenly distributed flecks

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5 minutes ago, Jonathan said:

Just a normal toothbrush, although I flick with a gloved finger and at a reasonable distance, seems to get smaller, more evenly distributed flecks

 

Thanks for the information. I'll have to take a look at the distance factor.  It also seems that the viscosity of the cocoa butter (which varies from moment to moment) and the amount of cocoa butter on the toothbrush play a role.

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39 minutes ago, Jim D. said:

 

Thanks for the information. I'll have to take a look at the distance factor.  It also seems that the viscosity of the cocoa butter (which varies from moment to moment) and the amount of cocoa butter on the toothbrush play a role.

 

probably so too does the firmness of the toothbrush. 

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19 hours ago, jimb0 said:

 

probably so too does the firmness of the toothbrush. 

I’m a dentist by trade (ironic I know) so I just grab whatever the free brushes are lying around work, I think these were just regular Colgate ones?

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