May 3, 2009
I'm quite new to this but would really appreciate if someone could help me out with some questions I have. Basically, I have 3 questions(the book I am referring to is Peter Grewelings, Chocolate and Confections):
1. I am reading about how adding cocoa butter can reduce the viscosity of tempered chocolate but this doesn't make sense to me as I thought cocoa butter is effectively pure phase-v crystals and the viscosity of tempered chocolate is dependent on how much phase-v crystals one has (i.e. more phase-v equates to a thicker chocolate). Can someone clarify?
2. Assuming that Cocoa butter does make tempered chocolate less viscous, why can't one add this to over seeded chocolate? Again I am going by what the book says. Which is, a big NO NO to adding to overseeded chocolate.
3. I have been tempering chocolate using the seeded method with the mol d'art 3kg or 1.5kg machine. I have been getting really thick (viscose) tempers, the kitchen is around 19 degrees celcius and its quite dry. Are there any solutions to make it less thick and thereby easier to use for moulds (I am really tempted to throw in the cocoa butter in as it took me hours to get one set of moulds completed the other day).
Thanks for all your opinions and advice.
September 30, 2004
1. Cocoa butter hsa the POTENTIAL to form 5 different crystal forms. It's ability to do so depends on how you treat it temperature wise. Since viscosity is effectively a measurement of flowability, if you add more fluid to your chocolate, it will be more flowable (as long as it's fat liquid, not water liquid). Best scenario? Add the cocoa butter, heat everything up to 120 F to melt all crystals, and temper. Peter's a chef, not a scientist, remember...some of what he has to say is accurate, some isn't, at least from a scientific standpoint..
2. You can add ccb to overseeded chocolate. Temper isn't a 'yes or no' scenario, there are degrees of temper. If your chocolate is over tempered, adding undertempered/warm butter can fix that. Getting it just right, however, can be tricky, and just coms with experience.
3. Heat it up just a tad. Keep a hot air gun arond to give it a shot of heat now and then, then mix it up very well to ensure yu've got no hot spots. Again, becomes easier with practice.
May 28, 2006
I also find when working with the 3kg melter that the chocolate can rapidly over crystalise. I put some of this down to working with small volumes of chocolate.
I use the hot air gun on the surface quite regularly and stir well after each blast. If you think you have overheated just give the chocolate a little while to recrystalise before using it, and stir regularly.
May 3, 2009
Thanks for the really informative response Sebastian. Hopefully with it my next few batches are going to turn out with a perfect temper (this is what I tell myself every time). Fingers crossed.
Thanks for sharing Jill, I totally agree with the rapid crystallisation. Looks like i need to invest in a heat gun (currently I use a hair dryer *lol*).
Now onto the chocolate factory.
August 27, 2008
April 8, 2009
I have recently had similar viscosity problems with my chocolate, and having spoke to our S&T department, they recommended that I use cocoa butter to solve the problem, but were very specific about how much butter I used. They advised that I should add no more than 1% of what chocolate I had in my tank. I have to say it worked a treat, and we now have the best chocolate we've had for a long time.
With regards to the mol d'art melters, I have to say they are one of the worst pieces of kit on the market. The problem with them is that the heat is not distributed evenly throughout the chocolate, leading to over-crystalisation and thick chocolate. My advice would be to get a melting tank which has an agitator. This keeps the chocolate moving constantly, ensuring even heat distribution and better quality liquid chocolate.
Dairy Milk is good.