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Skwerl

Chocolates with that showroom finish, 2004 - 2011

587 posts in this topic

thanks for the feedback. I'm looking for a Temper machine in the $500 and under range. Any suggestions? I was looking at the rev1 and rev2...they seem pretty similar but I was hoping the rev2 is more robust and I would get it. What about other brands? Also, I've been looking around for transfer sheets...has anyone come across any place that really stands out? thanks again for all the feedback

funny, i too just spoke with ian over at chocovision.  i have a rev 2 and an X3210.  my big boy needed repairs and came back with an extra bowl.  my little guy is in the shop now.  it's no longer under warranty and needed a new motor, they are replacing the motor and only charging me the labor and shipping, about $50.  any other company would carge for the motor as well.

i think the motor fried because i (before getting a bigger machine) tried to feed it too much chocolate and it overflowed into the bottom, sticking up the turny thing and causing the motor too much stress.  just my theory.

so, repairs or not, i really like my loud machines.  they are easy to use, easy to clean and easy to stash away.

as for truffle guys question of education:  i took the ecole chocolate course and would only suggest it if you have very little knowledge of chocolate.  Many of my fellow students seemed to get a lot out of the course, i didn't feel that way.  i was hoping it would be more than the absolute basics.  i love my books and the internet.

trish


Edited by Truffle Guy (log)

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My Rev1 does a great job with E. Guittard chocolate when it decides to work, but I've been told that the Rev2 would be a better choice if you're using El Rey or Valrhona because they require a slightly warmer temperature than the Rev1 defaults to. Aside from being able to adjust the temperature and pause the bowl, there isn't a huge difference between the two models. I really need a larger tempering machine, but the next step up is 10 lbs which is too big. Other companies' temperers that I have seen are more expensive than Chocovision's. I haven't used them, so I can't say anything regarding their quality, but as with anything (as the old cliche goes), you tend to get what you pay for. As far as transfer sheets go, I have gotten most of mine from Kerekes (linky), but it looks like they've raised prices quite a bit. I think JBPrince has them, too.


Josh Usovsky

"Will Work For Sugar"

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A.C.D.

American Chocolate Design company, give you a lot of cool stuff for your chocolate.


Dean Anthony Anderson

"If all you have to eat is an egg, you had better know how to cook it properly" ~ Herve This

Pastry Chef: One If By Land Two If By Sea

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I'm doing some chocolates for a fundraiser and want to provide some nice packaging, does anyone have suggestions for a good place to order packaging? I have seen the simple truffle boxes but I'm looking for some more elaborate 1, 1.5 and 2 lb boxes. Thanks for any help! :biggrin:

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I'm doing some chocolates for a fundraiser and want to provide some nice packaging, does anyone have suggestions for a good place to order packaging?  I have seen the simple truffle boxes but I'm looking for some more elaborate 1, 1.5 and 2 lb boxes.  Thanks for any help! :biggrin:

Try Package Nakazawa. Japanese company with a sales office in LA.

Several high-end hotels I know of were looking to use them for their packaging. Comparatively inexpensive, too.

:Clay


Clay Gordon

president, pureorigin

editor/publisher www.chocophile.com

founder, New World Chocolate Society

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I'm doing some chocolates for a fundraiser and want to provide some nice packaging, does anyone have suggestions for a good place to order packaging?  I have seen the simple truffle boxes but I'm looking for some more elaborate 1, 1.5 and 2 lb boxes.  Thanks for any help! :biggrin:

Try Package Nakazawa. Japanese company with a sales office in LA.

Several high-end hotels I know of were looking to use them for their packaging. Comparatively inexpensive, too.

:Clay

Clay, thanks. Great call they do a great job and you are right about the pricing, very reasonable for the product. Thanks again!!!

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A question from a new kid. Is there a term for the fillings in a truffle (other than ganache)? Where do I find recipes for fillings? Thanks.

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Truffle is hard(ened) ganache. I think you mean fillings for bon bons in which there are thousands. Just look up bon bon or "chocolates" recipes and should get you on your way.

By the way, welcome to EGULLET Gary K


Dean Anthony Anderson

"If all you have to eat is an egg, you had better know how to cook it properly" ~ Herve This

Pastry Chef: One If By Land Two If By Sea

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Welcome to The eGullet Society For Arts & Letters GaryK!

One of the easiest way to find recipes is to go to all the different chocolate manufactors websites and check out their recipes.

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Just recently Mette,another contributor to the pastry and baking forum, posed a question related to the making of bon bons. I am bringing this topic up to the top again because of the photo of the beautifully finished bon bons that were included in the other topic. Hope that makes sense. Here is the photo.

gallery_29514_1165_312531.jpg

The questions that I had were in regard to the finish of these beautiful bon boons in the photo. I have been reading this topic since its inception and have used the techniques included here such as; spraying cocoa butter, either plain or colored, adding lustra dust, transfer sheets, and polishing the molds. I have been happy with the results but am always looking for further refinements.

Now getting down to the photo. The thing that intrigues me is the finnish. It seems to be of greater depth than I am used to seeing. I have found that when spraying cocoa butter into the mold that the thinner the better. I was wondering if Mette was using some special sort of tinted cocoa butter or if the entire shell was a very thin layer of cocoa butter and I was also wondering how she got the speckles in the finish. Maybe Mette or someone else can enlighten me.

I did want to bring up another thought concerning the close up photographing of bon bons. I have been using a camera with a flash and a diffuser on it. At close range it produces a soft fuzzy highlight. In the photo that Mette posted it seems that a flash was not used, only natural light thus producing highlights with crisp edges and making the finish appear more glossy. Something to think about the next time I photograph my bon bons. Included here is a photo of some of my latest bon bons.

gallery_9087_1193_113802.jpg


Fred Rowe

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The questions that I had were in regard to the finish of these beautiful bon boons in the photo.  I have been reading this topic since its inception and have used the techniques included here such as; spraying cocoa butter, either plain or colored, adding lustra dust, transfer sheets, and polishing the molds.  I have been happy with the results but am always looking for further refinements.

Now getting down to the photo. The thing that intrigues me is the finnish.  It seems to be of greater depth than I am used to seeing.  I have found that when spraying cocoa butter into the mold that the thinner the better.  I was wondering if Mette was using some special sort of tinted cocoa butter or if the entire shell was a very thin layer of cocoa butter and I was also wondering how she got the speckles in the finish.  Maybe Mette or someone else can enlighten me.

Thanks for the compliment. The technique is pretty much as described in lots of posts above. Polish the clean molds with cotton wool. Wipe the cavities very thinly with cotton wool dipped in cocoa butter. My limited experience tells me that the harder one presses the cocoa butter into the cavity, the shinier the bon bon. The cocoa butter is of unknown origin, bought through a local candy making supplier. The colour is ruby colouring powder from PCB. I sprinkled it in with a paint brush, and for some reason there was lots of static electricity which helped spread the powder evenly in the molds. Bash them upside down to get rid of excess powder and mold the chocolate as usual - I used Sao Thome fro Callebaut.

I did want to bring up another thought concerning the close up photographing of bon bons.  I have been using a camera with a flash and a diffuser on it.  At close range it produces a soft fuzzy highlight.  In the photo that Mette posted it seems that a flash was not used, only natural light thus producing highlights with crisp edges and making the finish appear more glossy.  Something to think about the next time I photograph my bon bons.  Included here is a photo of some of my latest bon bons.

I'm no master photographer, but for this kind of work, I'd avoid using a camera mounted flash. It will give unsightly reflexes. A north facing window or similar on a bright day, and a camera with a good macro is all I used. Your bon bons look great - photographing them from the side instead of from above will show them off more. A subdued background will set them off.

(This is fun - chatting about chocolate!!!)

Get photographing!!!

/Mette

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I am completely inspired! I'm off to order molds, colors, chocolate...the works! This looks like so much fun and I'll have holiday gifts for friends and family!

Truffle Guy, have you decided if you are going to switch careers or just use your passion as a side job yet? I'm super interested to learn of your progess and ideas.

Thanks everyone for your contributions to this thread, it has been most enlightening!

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whoa, took me a while to get through this thread. there are some really beautiful chocolates here guys. i am very impressed!! i've only been posting for a couple of weeks but the amount of talent in this "online community" is amazing. i've been thinking of getting into chocolate work more, and was wondering what kinds of tempering techniques you guys prefer / and use on a regular basis? also what kind of tricks to you use to hold your chocolate in temper? heating pad? bain marie? i think it would be interesting to hear everyone's methods.

thanks,

brady

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... was wondering what kinds of tempering techniques you guys prefer / and use on a regular basis?  also what kind of tricks to you use to hold your chocolate in temper?  heating pad?  bain marie?  i think it would be interesting to hear everyone's methods.

thanks,

brady

I use a bain marie both to melt and then hold couverture in temper. Assuming your room is air conditioned (see below) a large bain marie should hold your chocolate in temper for several hours. I have a 21 kg (45 lb) bain marie. Problems begin when the bain marie is / becomes only one third full. With more than 7 kg (15 lbs) of chocolate, the chocolate has enough bulk (remember chocolate is a very poor conductor of heat - so takes some time to over heat/cool) to withstand the lack of precision of a bain marie's thermostat and hot air heater.

Water bain maries (mine is hot air) have an advantage (more even and constant transfer of heat) and two disadvantages (potential of adding moisture to atmosphere - and more cumbersome to move around the laboratory).

Heat pad and glass / plastic bowl. I use a glass bowl (there is a thread here somewhere that discusses the merits of glass versus plastic). After much practice I now place the heat pad inside a larger plastic bowl, cover with two thick tea towels, then place on top my smaller 3 litre (5 pint) glass bowl, nearly full of tempered couverture.

As you use up your couverture, the effect of the insulated heat pad will vary, making it very difficult to keep the couverture in temper for very long. I only use this method only for testing and samples, not for sale items.

Re: Air conditioning. Couverture will absorb water from the atmosphere if the atmosphere's Relative Humidity is greater than that of the melted couverture, ie about 30-40%. The greater the atmospheric humidity, the greater the differential, the greater the rate of absorption. Water causes the sugar particles in you chocolate to bind together, thickening your couverture over time.

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I did it!!!!!!!!!!! :biggrin::biggrin: I made my first batch of bon bons and now I have some questions.

First the method: I used a bain marie and a glass bowl for the heating process and an ice bath for the cooling part of the process. This actually worked beautifully. Taking into account that the glass bowl retains heat/cold I was careful to remove the bowl to the ice a couple degrees early and vice versa. (I met Exec. Pastry Chef Mohan DiSilva who suggested the ice method) I melted the cocoa butter and used a cotton ball to rub the cavities of the mold. I then went back thru with a clean cotton ball to remove some of the cocoa butter because I was afraid there may be too much. I also added a sparing amount of gold luster dust to 1/2 of the molds since I had 2 kinds of ganach and I wanted to have visual difference between the two. To fill the mold I spooned the tempered chocolate onto the mold and slammed it on the counter a few times to remove get rid of air bubbles then I tipped it back into my bowl to remove the excess chocolate. I used a bench scraper to clean off the top of the mold. This was pretty messy but fun! I wrapped the mold in cling wrap and popped it into the fridge to harden. Removed it, piped in ganach, re tempered my chocolate and filled in the bottoms, scrape with bench scraper again.

QUESTIONS:

1) How do you get the molded shell thinner? My chocolate was pretty thick still and after I drained the mold the walls of the bon bons were pretty thin in places and the bottom of the cup was pretty thick.

2) I couldn't tell which ones had the luster dust, how much do you usually use? Would it be better to add it to the melted cocoa butter and rub in that way?

3) Is there some other way to color cocoa butter? What with?

4) Although my temper was perfect (yea!!! :biggrin: I must admit I'm proud of myself for this, I thought it would be harder to do) the bon bons still were not really shiney. Do I need more cocoa butter for that? The stuff I'm using was from the bakery store. Does this need to be melted to a certain temperature or tempered?

Thanks to anyone who can help me make the next batch better!

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Okay....

1) spin your mold around while holding it upside down. I do this over a sheet of parchment with an apron on. Get a good spin goin' and you'll see why.

2) use more luster dust or less cocoa butter.

3) there are a couple of threads I think about PCB colors and other cocoa butter color. Maybe someone will help me out with a link.

4) shine has to do with cooling as well as temper and it may just be your mold. are you working with a good professional mold? did you polish it first?

keep trying, chocolates take some time to master. there are a lot of variables

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Thank you Thank you Trishiad for responding! And for the encouragement.

I did order a polycarbonate mold online. It is beautiful! Perhaps I need to be patient (not a long suit) and let the mold 'season' with a few uses to build up a better shine. Hmmmm.

I think I'll have to break down and schill out the $17/bottle for the colored cocoa butter from Chef Rubber website.

I'll do the spin trick to empty out the molds of more chocolate the next time around. That will likey work.

I'll keep you posted of my results!

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I'd like to try my hand at making some of the 'norman love' type shells - i've ordered a number of the chef rubber tinted butters - the packaging suggests not to heat the product over 86F, which suggests it's coming to me in temper and that it should be used in temper. Is this the case - before i rub it into the molds or spray it in, does it need to go in tempered? Or can i simply melt it and run with it...

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I've never tempered colored cocoa butter and it always works just fine. I've certainly heated it way beyond 86* in my microwave with no ill effects. The only temperature related problem I've had is when the cocoa butter starts to get too cool and hardens up. Don't be afraid.

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Thanks choux - i gave it the ol' college try today, and while I learned lots (i didn't really believe the cocoa butter would look good if not tempered - you were right, it works!), i'm a far, far cry from what i was after. After seeing how mine turned out, my technique must be way off. I'd be interested in hearing how others are getting the nice swirls that are present on Norman Loves products. Multiple folks indicated they'd put on a glove and swirled it in with their finger, which didn't yield near the same definition as i see in his photos (i essentially put on a 'medium amount' of the colored ccb, and in a single movement, made a nike swoosh type design, with a little more rotation). Airbrushing them in gave a nice effect, but again, not what i was hoping for. Can anyone share in further detail than what's already been shared your techniques?

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My chocolates were a failure!

I polished the molds with a little coco butter and then air brushed the molds with PCB colors and Chef Rubber colors. When I went to unmold the chocolates they came out ok but some of the coloring stayed in the molds? So they didn't look too nice.....

My molds are the polycarbonite molds from JB Prince.

Does the colored cocobutter in the molds have to be warm and wet since I sprayed the molds saturday with the colors but finished up the process on sunday. I didn't think this was necessar based on what I read on this post....

Any ideas?

It was such a mess and I was so fustrated I ended up washing the molds :-) Which means I will be polishing the molds tonight!

Thanks!

Jeff

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I've had that happen to me too jturn00 when I began learning how to make these. It is really frustrating, but don't give up, it's just a small glitch you'll get past.

I attribute it to the molds not being clean enough/polished clean before applying your cocoa butter and colors. Or......possible scratches in your mold.

How did you polish your molds before you began?

I currently use cotton balls to polish my molds between uses. When I used a cotton cloth, I didn't seem to get it as perfectly pushed into my mold to polish every angle as perfectly as needed.

Having your molds at room temp. or warmed effects the shine (positively) but to the best of my experience it doesn't effect it so that they stick to the mold. Sticking (for me) has always related back to how well polished my molds were.........or if they weren't completely set when you unmolded them.

But perhaps someone has a different answer..............

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It's important that the mold is clean. JB Prince says that the molds are dishwasher safe as long as you don't use an abrasive. Running them through the dishwasher, (where the water temperature doesn't rise above 50C and no heated drying) helps me keep my molds spotless.

It's most important that your chocolate is properly tempered. If it's not, then your chocolate will not shrink enough as it sets and will stick.

If you're having some problems getting your chocolate out of the mold, try flexing the mold a bit, or try tapping the inverted mold with the handle of your palette knife. If that doesn't work, pop it in the refrigerator for 20 minutes. This can help the chocolate contract a tiny bit more and ease the release from the mold.

The PCB colors need to used between 86 to 91.5°F (30 to 33°C). Also room temperature plays an important role. For me, around 70°F (21°C) works best.

Keep at it and have fun!


Edited by John DePaula (log)

John DePaula
formerly of DePaula Confections
Hand-crafted artisanal chocolates & gourmet confections - …Because Pleasure Matters…
--------------------
When asked “What are the secrets of good cooking? Escoffier replied, “There are three: butter, butter and butter.”

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I may have done my polishing correctly... I used a paper towel.. I also added some cocobutter to the paper towel. The molds were at room temperature when I sprayed and filled them. The chocolates did not stick to the mold but the coloring I sprayed (using an airbrush) did not fully adhere to the chocolate so a lot was still on the mold when the chocolates popped out. They have a chipped paint/antique look.

Next time I will polish my molds using cotton balls and no cocobutter. The molds that I used with no coloring came out great. Oh how I would have liked to get that great airbrush sprayed look.

Thanks,

Jeff

(I lent my out my digital camera so I wasn't able to take any picutres but I hope to get it back after the holiday weekend and then I can post some pictures.)


Edited by jturn00 (log)

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