Forum Activity for @Sirius Chocolate

Sirius Chocolate
@Sirius Chocolate
05/21/11 03:23:00AM
10 posts

Santha Melangeurs


Posted in: Geek Gear - Cool Tools

Thanks!

I didnt even look into those because on first glance they appeared to be only for milling powder. If nothing else that expands my options - who wouldnt want "The Rolls Royce of Grindeurs"...

Sirius Chocolate
@Sirius Chocolate
05/19/11 02:04:51PM
10 posts

Santha Melangeurs


Posted in: Geek Gear - Cool Tools

Yeah, I just canceled my order after a week of them not answering the phone or responding to my messages. Do you recommend any other Melangers?

Im really dissappointed because I was excited about the 40L volume and the variable speed control. Alas, I should have known it was too good to be true...

The only other models I can find on the internet are the Cocoa Town melangers ( http://www.cocoatown.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=48&Itemid=55 ) and the Ultra Melangers on Chocolate Alchemy ( http://shop.chocolatealchemy.com/collections/equipment ). But neither really have the throughput Im looking for.

Sirius Chocolate
@Sirius Chocolate
05/16/11 12:52:56PM
10 posts

Santha Melangeurs


Posted in: Geek Gear - Cool Tools

Greetings Fellow Chocophiles,

I have recently begun the process of purchasing a Spectra 40 Stone Melanger - http://www.santhausa.com/Spectra%2040%20Melanger%20Speed%20Controller.htm

Is there anybody out there on the Chocolate Life who has experience using this equipment, or who knows anyone who has?

I am receiving an extremely low level of customer service, and the warranty is very limited on the product, as well as there being no facility in the United States (where I am) to service the melangeur in the event of mechanical problems. On top of this, I have been told I will have to wait several months for the Spectra 40 to ship directly from the manufacturer in India.

With an investment of this nature, my business simply cannot afford for this type of equipment to be anything other than top-notch for many years to come, if not decades. Any advice or information regarding the Spectra 40 Melanger specifically, or Santha in general, is greatly appreciated.

.:SiriuS:.


updated by @Sirius Chocolate: 04/24/17 03:27:45PM
Sirius Chocolate
@Sirius Chocolate
06/20/10 04:39:30PM
10 posts

Summer shipping tips & tricks?


Posted in: Tech Help, Tips, Tricks, & Techniques

Holy smokes, this is invaluable insight!
Sirius Chocolate
@Sirius Chocolate
05/23/10 07:41:31PM
10 posts

Child Slave Labour Doco


Posted in: News & New Product Press

Child slave labor is a major issue with the cacao used by a lot of the "big boys" of chocolate manufacturing. It is truly difficult to maintain integrity when dealing with through-puts the size of a companies like, oh say, Hersheys.This is a huge problem, and is exactly why it is encouraged for consumers to support artisan chocolate producers, and chocolate producers to develop relationships with cacao growers, at lease in my opinion.Sirius
Sirius Chocolate
@Sirius Chocolate
05/23/10 07:15:11PM
10 posts

What relationship do high quality, non-artisanal chocolate makers have with the cacao farmers/plantations?


Posted in: Chocolate Education

Thank you Sebastion, and Sunita for posting this. I am small-scale when it comes to chocolate brands, and am just getting business into gear, so I have neither relationships with cacao growers nor a large market segment to influence growing/processing/pricing practices.Beyond the sensual enjoyment, and even the nutritional aspects of cacao, part of what is so amazing to me about cacao is that it is a massively valuable global commodity which represents a dynamic opportunity to put "business" behind issues as pressing as preserving rainforest and providing "third-world" people with livelihood, and the incentive to protect their natural treasures. Perhaps I am an idealist, but my vision is all wild-harvested, resilient cacao from within natural rainforest canopies, for the ecological role of preserving our planets lungs, and the practical role of preserving biodiversity for future generations.Perhaps the Chocolate Life may make it possible to inform and organize enough people to reverse the trends you speak of Sebastion, and any way I can support a broad-spectrum alliance to educate indigenous peoples in cacao growing regions of the importance of cacao, or experiments in sustainable growing practices which decrease susceptibility to disease while increasing soil fertility, I would love to be a part.Sirius
Sirius Chocolate
@Sirius Chocolate
04/27/10 01:18:40PM
10 posts

Raw Chocolate


Posted in: Make Mine Raw ...

Brian,With regards to "aromica", which I assume you could also be referring to "arriba", a forum post allready exists exploring the matter of cacao genetic strains in great detail here.While fermenting does decrease antioxidant levels according to Steve, David Wolfe wrote in his book "Superfoods" (which cites many scientific studies and lab tests) that fermentation significantly increases the amount of psychoactive substances in cacao, such as phenylethylamine (from ~%1 to ~%3). I personally enjoy fermented, unroasted, cold-processed (never heated above ~118 F, particularly in the oil pressing) cacao, and that is what I use in my chocolate.Clay and Steve, I want to personally thank you both for your passion, and the work that you do for chocolate! In my studies, I truly believe that cacao is of significant benefit to help our current situation on this planet - ecologically, economically, nutritionally, dare I say spiritually! You are both inspirations. Dialectics, semantic or otherwise, serve to refine our own assumptions of "the-way-things-REALLY-are", and the language we use to communicate them.Sirius Alchemy
updated by @Sirius Chocolate: 09/10/15 06:47:28AM
Sirius Chocolate
@Sirius Chocolate
04/21/10 11:54:54PM
10 posts

The Agave Controversey is heating up...


Posted in: News & New Product Press

It's funny, I knew intuitively when I first started experimenting with raw chocolate that agave nectar had a strong blood sugar reaction with me. My personal preference not to sweeten with agave was only recently confirmed with the latest buzz about the agave blues.
Sirius Chocolate
@Sirius Chocolate
04/20/10 01:17:11PM
10 posts

The Agave Controversey is heating up...


Posted in: News & New Product Press

Nice read. Are you sourcing your Sacred Truffles from Cru Cacao? I noticed the same formulas and names.Sirius.
Sirius Chocolate
@Sirius Chocolate
04/18/10 05:18:41PM
10 posts

Raw Chocolate


Posted in: Make Mine Raw ...

Greetings Chocolate Lifers,

I have been enjoying so much rich information from perusing this website, the time has come for my debut contribution - a discussion on "Raw Chocolate". Now before everybody launches into this based on personal convictions of the "correct", "traditional", or "market standard" way of processing chocolate, let us take a moment to consider the nature of human knowledge and how it progresses through the ages, be it scientific breakthroughs or cultural/industrial practices pertaining to food handling, and how the accepted assumptions of one age can be overturned and proven "false" by new "discoveries". Thus, let us keep an open mind and really consider other possibilities than the known, than what's conventional. That being said, this forum post is intended to be a place for discussion citing scientific studies, and experts in the field and on the ground, to see if there is anything of real value that can be gained by examining chocolate from a slightly different vantage point.

My interests in chocolate grew out of my involvement in the Raw Food movement (Youtube: David Wolfe), which for me is a fairly radical attempt to get as far away from the industrial and agricultural "revolution's" impacts on human health, and ecological health, by eating as close to the natural source as possible. Now, the discussion of raw foods is intimately intertwined with many other political issues, including organics (an attempt to lessen artificial pesticides and fertilizers which destroy long-term soil fertility), fair-trade (an attempt to equalize the economies of a global commodity market), human nutrition (the well known debate on the heat sensitive nature of enzymes, amino acids, and certain vitamins, ect.), and so on.

While not being for everybody, and perhaps most valuable only as a cleanse (as opposed to a long-term diet; research: Daniel Vitalis), I feel totally confident in saying that going raw for several months completely changed my experience of life in a drastically positive way. As raw foodists sought vegan sources of high-vitamin/mineral content foods, we saw the birth of the "Superfood" movement (research: David Wolfe, Linus Pauling), which brought to general market a certain pricy commodity being sold as "Raw Chocolate".

Praised for its rich mineral content, along with a wide array of psychoactive components, minimally processed cacao products fast grew into a trendy health-fad among "conscious" consumers who could afford it. As someone who came to chocolate from this perspective, I now am delving deeper into the history, the processing, the business, and the fine culinary aspects of cacao.

From my understanding, all fine chocolatiers roast their beans, a process which chemically alters the cacao in a way which produces the flavor profiles commonly associated with "good" chocolate. Now, there are two different approaches to come at this subject from this point: there is the personal approach which is most concerned with how different chocolate products make me feel. And then there is the scientific perspective incorporating biochemistry, and how various practices of processing affect human health and nutrition.

From the personal perspective, I have this to say. All "processed" chocolate, (ie. pressed at high temps/pressures, roasted, conched...) makes me feel bad compared to "raw" chocolate, despite the "fine" chocolates having a more subtle flavor profile. Now, the fine chocolatier would say I have not developed the palate for differentiating the subtle flavors of fine chocolate; the raw foodist would say the chocolate connoisseurs have not detoxed their body enough to feel the effects of eating the processed chocolate. Again, this claim is personal to me, although being confirmed by many people I know.

Now then, of the scientific perspective, examining how the chemical constituents (changed by different processing techniques) affects our biological system, I have heard several claims made. The first is that heating cacao (in the pressing to remove the oil, and in the roasting) kills the enzymes. I have also heard it argued that cacao does not contain considerable enzymes after the fermentation process. Next, exposing the cacao to high temps (especially over 200 degrees F.) supposedly reduces and/or eliminates the presence of some of cacao's fancier psycoative molecules such as phenylethylamine, anandamine, and tryptophan, as well as deteriorates the methylxanthines from theobromine into caffeine. Third, high-temp processing has been said to lessen the nutritional value of chocolate by reducing the amounts of vitamin C, as well as many of the other nutrients found in an unpressed, unroasted cacao bean (B-vitamins...). Lastly, and claimed by David Wolfe to be the final arbiter on "raw" versus "processed", all high-temp exposed chocolate contains rancid omega fatty acids (trans-fats) which can cause an inflammatory reaction once consumed by humans, whereas "raw" cacao contains stable omega fatty acids beneficial to human health.

{for information purposes: "raw" is generally defined asnever having been heated over 118
degrees Fahrenheit
. All chocolate that I know of being sold as
"raw" has been fermented, which does take the temp over 118 degrees F.
However, the difference from this point is in the processing which takes
place once the beans get in the hands of the "chocolate maker".}

updated by @Sirius Chocolate: 04/09/15 10:23:15AM