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Confections! (2006-2012)


Kerry Beal
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I'm very glad to be able to read all your comments.

emmalish--this is the first time I have used the mol d'art. I dipped things in chocolate without worrying about the temper before, with unpredictable results. I have been reading egullet and seventypercent and some other sites and bought the mol d'art. I was hoping to use a method described by some posters as "controlled melt", which is that the chocolate is in temper when you start, so you melt it gently enough to keep it within its temper range and it stays in temper. But it sounds like everyone using mol d'art does a melt and seed method, so I'll work on that next.

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Also, do you have a thermometer to check the temperature of the melted chocolate?

I like to use an infra-red themometer as there is no probe getting in the way and I don't have to clean it off. The melter holds temperature well enough that I don't feel the need to continuously monitor it with a probe.

I finally took the plunge and bought an infrared thermometer. Wow, what a pleasure to use. Really speeds up my work flow since I don't have to worry about cleaning the probe thermometer; plus, it's not in the way in the melter.

Highly recommended.

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 finally took the plunge and bought an infrared thermometer.  Wow, what a pleasure to use.  Really speeds up my work flow since I don't have to worry about cleaning the probe thermometer; plus, it's not in the way in the melter.

Highly recommended.

If you use one of these remember to stir your chocolate before taking a measurment as the top layer will cool well before the rest since chocolate is a poor conductor.

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gallery_34671_3115_2821.jpg

Heading off to see my favorite organic meat farmer on Friday - made a little something for him. Last time I brought him a pig, he commented on how someday he'd like a cow. Unfortunately I couldn't afford to buy the metal mold of a serious cow that went for about $800 on e-bay - he'll have to settle for a not so serious cow.

Not a small mold, the cow is the length of my elbow to my fingertips, which I'm guessing is about 15 inches.

I've also got a little pig holding a flower for him too.

Now I've just got to find something to wrap them in.

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That's cool Kerry. And I'm jealous that you have a "favorite organic meat farmer". I wish there was one of those near me... even if he/she wasn't particularly my favorite.

  • Like 1

It's kinda like wrestling a gorilla... you don't stop when you're tired, you stop when the gorilla is tired.

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Thanks guys. Not sure how much chocolate it took, I'll attempt to weigh it tomorrow. I am in my last week here in Manitoulin Island and I've used the 10 kg of milk and 5 kg of dark chocolate that I brought with me. I ended up mixing all the dregs of the chocolate to get enough to mold this guy. Usually I pour lots of chocolate in the painted mold and dump it back out, but this time I was just turning it over and over trying to cover all the surfaces.

There are a couple of nice butchers here in town, I could probably get some butcher paper to wrap it in and perhaps a nice big foam tray!

Unfortunately my 'favorite organic meat farmer' is here on Manitoulin - a days drive from home, so I'll be stocking up on things to take back and put in the freezer. I should have called ahead and made sure he had a couple of nice butts for me, but I'll take my chances. He also taps his own maple trees and makes a fabulous dark maple syrup, of which I'll be taking home 5 or 6 quarts.

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Very cute, Kerry.  How much chocolate did it take?

It weighs about a kilogram. I suspect that it would be best at around 1200 grams if I'd had plenty of chocolate to work with.

I've got a white foam tray big enough for it, I'm considering taking it in to the store and letting them wrap it in the meat wrap (and maybe make me a label for it).

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I've got a white foam tray big enough for it, I'm considering taking it in to the store and letting them wrap it in the meat wrap (and maybe make me a label for it).

That would be perfect! Of course, you'd have to make sure to take a photo of it too.

I'm gonna go bake something…

wanna come with?

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He also taps his own maple trees and makes a fabulous dark maple syrup, of which I'll be taking home 5 or 6 quarts.

Does he have a website? That sounds awesome.

That cow is going to be really cool packaged that way, definitely hope you get a picture.

It's kinda like wrestling a gorilla... you don't stop when you're tired, you stop when the gorilla is tired.

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He also taps his own maple trees and makes a fabulous dark maple syrup, of which I'll be taking home 5 or 6 quarts.

Does he have a website? That sounds awesome.

That cow is going to be really cool packaged that way, definitely hope you get a picture.

No website, but here is a link to some information. They open the store on Tuesday and Friday. Bare bones, but wonderfully clean. He makes his own bacon, sausages, weiners and other smoked products.

Here is another link to an article about his use of a byproduct of the farm to make his own bio-diesel.

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gallery_34671_3115_10409.jpg

All wrapped up and ready to go. A bit more plastic on the ends than I would like, but it was a really busy day in the meat department and we had to work fast. Also stuffing her in and out of a cooler wasn't great for the wrapping.

Anyway, Max was thrilled with his cow. She had pride of place on the top of the display cooler when we left and Max was suggesting that he would really like it if all his customers thought to bring him things.

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That's perfect!  I hope he remembers that display case tops tend to get warm.  Otherwise he may end up with a tray full of chocolate milk :)

I put my hand on the spot and it wasn't warm. There is a warm spot over the light though, and I warned him about that.

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I'm very glad to be able to read all your comments.

emmalish--this is the first time I have used the mol d'art.  I dipped things in chocolate without worrying about the temper before, with unpredictable results.  I have been reading egullet and seventypercent and some other sites and bought the mol d'art.  I was hoping to use a method described by some posters as "controlled melt", which is that the chocolate is in temper when you start, so you melt it gently enough to keep it within its temper range and it stays in temper.  But it sounds like everyone using mol d'art does a melt and seed method, so I'll work on that next.

JPW also mentions that you can set it overnight at just the right temperature (calibrated to your machine). The top will be overcrystallized, the bottom will be undercrystallized, and when you mix it all together the next morning it will be just right. I've never gotten this method to work, but he says it's possible. I think if you search egullet archives, it is mentioned there too.

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I had read about Kee's creme brulee truffle, speculated about how it was done, and finally decided to try it myself.

I didn't want to settle for a "creme" truffle but wanted to try for the sugar crust as well.  There are several ways to get a thin chunk of carmalized sugar.  For this attempt I carmalized in a pot,  poured it between to silpats and spread it thin with a scraper.  When cooled I broke the sheet up into smaller pieces.  In the future I might try using a stencil to lay out piles of sugar to carmalize with a torch so I can get more consistent sizing with less waste.

Since the sugar would be sealed in the creme for several hours before it was eaten I decided to coat them in cocoa butter for protection.  I melted a bit of butter in a small cup and dipped the pieces in and laid them out on a silpat to set.

The cocoa butter protected the sugar, but I didn't particularly like the way it interfered with the flavor.  The next time I might try spraying it with an airbrush or dip in chocolate instead.

gallery_40084_4727_159188.jpg

I made the creme anglese and cooled it in the fridge until it wouldn't melt the dark chocolate shells.  It proved to still be pipeable, though it was a touch on the thick side.

gallery_40084_4727_101117.jpg

I placed the brulee on the bottom of half the pieces before placing them back in the fridge to set further.

I had been worried about backing off the bare creme pieces, but they proved to set thick enough that it wasn't a problem.

Then I took several dozen pieces to work and conducted a survey.  Everyone who wanted to sample had to try one of each and vote for "Sugar crunch" or "No sugar crunch".  I didn't get any complaints about the requirement to have two pieces.

I was concerned about the cocoa butter being too thick on the sugar, but to my suprise the vote came out 3 to 1 in favor of the sugar crunch.  So the result was people prefer the full "creme brulee" experience even when encased in a chocolate shell.

Good idea, but these must be eaten immediatley? or within a day or two at most.

I am quite intrigued by the idea of a creme brulee truffle but it is it possible to get a decent shelf life ( 1-2 weeks) on a similar recipe?

Sorry for the delayed reply, but I've been away from the board for a while.

Yes, these are special in that they do need to be eaten within a couple days since the degree of water activity is extremly high. I imagine that you could make a version with ganache that would last much longer, but the texture would also be different.

thanks for posting the results, I always enjoy seeing how these experiments work out!

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  • 4 weeks later...
I decided to do a little experimenting with colours for those showroom finish chocolates using different tools to see what effect is obtained with each tool.

gallery_34671_3115_15413.jpg

The rubber tipped 'paint brushes'

Kerry, where did you get those rubber tipped tools? I went looking for those today and couldn't find them. The hobby store had no idea what I was talking about.

I like the effects you got with those and would love to try them. Let me know what they're called! :rolleyes:

Thanks!

Valerie

Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body...but rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, wine in the other, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming "WOO HOO what a ride!"
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I decided to do a little experimenting with colours for those showroom finish chocolates using different tools to see what effect is obtained with each tool.

gallery_34671_3115_15413.jpg

The rubber tipped 'paint brushes'

Kerry, where did you get those rubber tipped tools? I went looking for those today and couldn't find them. The hobby store had no idea what I was talking about.

I like the effects you got with those and would love to try them. Let me know what they're called! :rolleyes:

Thanks!

Curry's art supply store. I think they are for working with clay - but they keep them with the paint brushes.

Valerie

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Thanks Kerry. I'll try an art supply store.

Valerie

Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body...but rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, wine in the other, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming "WOO HOO what a ride!"
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Hello all,

I am a brand new eGullet member and this is my first post.

Recently I have been making fruit flavored marshmallows dipped in 70% chocolate. I had no idea that marshmallows were anything other than those dreadful things in a plastic package. This has been a great adventure for me so far.

Darienne

 

learn, learn, learn...

 

Life in the Meadows and Rivers

Cheers & Chocolates

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Welcome, Darienne! I just made my first batch of marshmallows tonight (they're setting up now), and just from sampling some out of the bowl I can say the same thing as you. I've never liked marshmallows, but I've only ever had the mass-produced ones. After hearing everyone hear rave about how much better homemade ones are, I decided I had to try them. What a difference! I can't wait to try making different flavours too.

I'm gonna go bake something…

wanna come with?

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