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View Diary: What's for Dinner? v.5.37 - Spring has Sprung! (233 comments)

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  •  I love Callebaut chocolate, but I get a (7+ / 0-)

    migraine every time I eat it so I had to switch. The Wilbur Chocolate factory is about  a 40 min. drive away. My brother turned me on to the Brandywine and I brought home a lb of all of their milks and settled on the Guernsey. Now I buy 30 lb at a shot.

    What brand of tempering unit do you have and are you happy with it?

    I started out with a cheapy unit from the craft store. I wanted to make sure I was going to stick with chocolate making before I invested in decent equipment. I've been looking at a Mold d'Art  Melter. Their smaller unit looks like it will do the job for me.

    •  ChocoVision (7+ / 0-)

      I have a ChocoVision Revolution machine. It is fine for light duty, and with a small capacity...about a pound and a half in one cycle. It was bought for me as a gift, and as a result I`m very happy :)

      I use the machine about every 3-4 weeks and so far it`s holding up OK. If I needed a higher capacity or to use it more often, I`d go for a larger machine, but of course those are more expensive.

      It`s not fun to clean, but manageable.

      Resident Palin - even if she did take up residency in the White House in 2012, it's too painful to use the "P" word combined with her name

      by lotac on Sat Apr 09, 2011 at 07:32:03 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  If it wasn't for the fact that I'm diabetic (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Translator, TigerMom, Cordelia Lear

        this is something I'd be interested in because I do like chocolate.

        I wasn't diagnosed with diabetes until I was in college and before that I could eat all the chocolate I wanted. Unfortunately, those days are well behind me.

        Nevertheless, I'm fascinated by the technical challenges associated with cooking.

        I have no clue what tempering is about, but even if I never find myself in a position to deal with it I'm interested.

        Honesty pays, but it doesn't seem to pay enough to suit some people. Kin Hubbard

        by Mr Robert on Sat Apr 09, 2011 at 08:13:25 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I think Translator is planning more to say (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Translator, TigerMom, Cordelia Lear

          about tempering.

          In a nutshell, it`s about crystallization. You know if you have a chocolate candy bar that sits in the car on a warm day, and it melts and goes gooey....it never returns to the solid crisp state that it started out in.

          That`s because the melting breaks down the crystals. There are a handful of different types of crystals that chocolate can form into...and only one of them (well, two, sorta) is the right kind. Tempering is all about manipulating the temperature, up, down, and then partially up again, so the crystals melt into a liquid structure you can do things with, then reform into the perfect crystal form that has that nice snap we all like. Reform the wrong way, and you`ve just got a gooey mess as if you left it out in the sun.

          Chocolate is finnicky that way. Tempering is really a simple process, but it takes care and attention within close temperature tolerances. The temperature ranges you can work with at each stage are small and critical. Doing it manually is not difficult, given enough time and patience. But doing it automated is a lot easier.

          Resident Palin - even if she did take up residency in the White House in 2012, it's too painful to use the "P" word combined with her name

          by lotac on Sat Apr 09, 2011 at 08:28:36 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  YOU ARE GOOD! (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            lotac, TigerMom, Cordelia Lear

            Cocoa butter, the main lipid in chocolate, is very finicky as temperature is concerned.  I shall try hard to explain it in May.

            Warmest regards,

            Doc

            Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me. Fool me over and over, then either I really love you blindly or I am a Republican.

            by Translator on Sat Apr 09, 2011 at 08:35:00 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  It sounds to me like you need to be (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            TigerMom, Cordelia Lear

            a Ph.D Chemist to do all that. So I might just decide to leave this chocolate business to you and doc. :-)

            Honesty pays, but it doesn't seem to pay enough to suit some people. Kin Hubbard

            by Mr Robert on Sat Apr 09, 2011 at 08:54:26 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Recommended reading (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Mr Robert, TigerMom, ninkasi23

              If you want an easy to read cookbook that explains a lot of things in a friendly and open manner, have a look for `Cookwise`by Shirley O. Corriher, and the followup book `Bakewise`.

              She`s a food scientist, and acquaintence of the earlier mentioned Alton Brown. Both live in the Atlanta area, and she has appeared on a few episodes of Good Eats. One of those charming southern ladies who will win you over at the first drawl.

              Resident Palin - even if she did take up residency in the White House in 2012, it's too painful to use the "P" word combined with her name

              by lotac on Sat Apr 09, 2011 at 09:05:22 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

        •  You can enjoy (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Mr Robert, TigerMom, ninkasi23

          chocolate if you get the low sugar, high cocoa kind.  It is actually good for almost everyone, when eaten in small amounts on a daily basis.

          Warmest regards,

          Doc

          Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me. Fool me over and over, then either I really love you blindly or I am a Republican.

          by Translator on Sat Apr 09, 2011 at 08:33:05 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

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