Forum Activity for @Solis Lujan

Solis Lujan
@Solis Lujan
08/29/12 01:53:57AM
26 posts

Personalised Moulds


Posted in: Classifieds

Tomric, ditto. They are light weight, but you would have to spend thousands to get them in hard plastic.

Solis Lujan
@Solis Lujan
08/05/12 12:24:05AM
26 posts

Of course they did!


Posted in: History of Chocolate

I thought this might be of interest to some of you. I have alway purported this was the case. How can it be that a great civilization that built the pyramids and charted the stars, ate and drank bitter gruel! Montezuma served Cortez and his men 500 dishes on his arrive toTeotihuacn. The word mole is used in combination with many mayan word meaning sauce of some kind, like guacamole.

Experts: Mayas may have used chocolate as spice
By MARK STEVENSON
Associated Press
MEXICO CITY (AP) -- Archaeologists say they have found traces of 2,500-year-old chocolate on a plate in the Yucatan peninsula, the first time they have found ancient chocolate residue on a plate rather than a cup, suggesting it may have been used as a condiment or sauce with solid food.
Experts have long thought cacao beans and pods were mainly used in pre-Hispanic cultures as a beverage, made either by crushing the beans and mixing them with liquids or fermenting the pulp that surrounds the beans in the pod. Such a drink was believed to have been reserved for the elite.
But the discovery announced this week by Mexico's National Institute of Anthropology and History expands the envelope of how chocolate may have been used in ancient Mexico.
It would also suggest that there may be ancient roots for traditional dishes eaten in today's Mexico, such as mole, the chocolate-based sauce often served with meats.
"This is the first time it has been found on a plate used for serving food," archaeologist Tomas Gallareta said. "It is unlikely that it was ground there (on the plate), because for that they probably used metates (grinding stones)."
The traces of chemical substances considered "markers" for chocolate were found on fragments of plates uncovered at the Paso del Macho archaeological site in Yucatan in 2001.
The fragments were later subjected to tests with the help of experts at Millsaps College in Jackson, Mississippi, as part of a joint project. The tests revealed a "ratio of theobromine and caffeine compounds that provide a strong indicator of cacao usage," according to a statement by the university.
"These are certainly interesting results," John S. Henderson, a Cornell University professor of Anthropology and one of the foremost experts on ancient chocolate, said in an email Thursday.
Henderson, who was not involved in the Paso del Macho project, wrote that "the presence of cacao residues on plates is even more interesting ... the important thing is that it was on flat serving vessels and so presented or served in some other way than as a beverage."
"I think their inference that cacao was being used in a sauce is likely correct, though I can imagine other possibilities," he added, citing possibilities like "addition to a beverage (cacao-based or other) as a condiment or garnish."
The plate fragments date to about 500 B.C., and are not the oldest chocolate traces found in Mexico. Beverage vessels found in excavations of Gulf coast sites of the Olmec culture, to the west of the Yucatan, and other sites in Chiapas, to the south, have yielded traces around 1,000 years older.
But it does extend the roots of Mexican cuisine, and the importance of chocolate, further back into the past.
"This indicates that the pre-Hispanic Maya may have eaten foods with cacao sauce, similar to mole," the anthropology institute said in a statement.


updated by @Solis Lujan: 04/14/15 02:56:10PM
Solis Lujan
@Solis Lujan
07/30/12 02:53:37PM
26 posts

Guitar Cutter.. Which one to Purchase ?


Posted in: Opinion

When I bought my Dedy, it was cheaper to get it with the 4 frames than buy it with one or two frames, separately. Check it out with Tom at TCF sales, he sometimes has them on sales, ask for a small discount. Don't tell him I said this, LOL.

Solis Lujan
@Solis Lujan
07/27/12 12:37:56AM
26 posts

Guitar Cutter.. Which one to Purchase ?


Posted in: Opinion

For caramels I have a wonderful steel rolling pin with adjustable wheels, does a great job, but it is not for chocolate. I love my equipment and machines, I get the best quality I can, I feel in the long run it is the only why to go. The Dety for instance, is made like a fine musical instrument.

Solis Lujan
@Solis Lujan
07/27/12 12:30:24AM
26 posts

Guitar Cutter.. Which one to Purchase ?


Posted in: Opinion

I have a Dedy with 4 frames also, it is a beautiful piece of equipment. Tom at tcf sales is great to work with. I thought the cart was a bit expensive so I put together my own stainless steel one. Cost about $ 120.00 and it is just as nice. Buy 2 stainless steel carts at Sam's Club, Costco or other such store. They come with top, a self and a basket, plus heavy duty wheels.You will have an extra set of legs, wheels and a basket, put aside. Assemble, 4 shelves on the legs, basket on the bottom, presto, prefect guitar stand. Plus the basket on the bottom is great for accessories. I will try and put up photo later. But it is really simple, let me know if you have any questions on this set up.

Solis Lujan
@Solis Lujan
02/03/12 11:33:57PM
26 posts

How much chocolate do you eat per day, on average?


Posted in: Tasting Notes

Chocolate, A Bitter Saga of Dark and Light by Mort Rosenblum. And yes, it is a good read.

Solis Lujan
@Solis Lujan
02/07/12 03:11:27PM
26 posts

Mast Brothers


Posted in: Geek Gear - Cool Tools

Can you post a link to those articles, I would live to read them.

Solis Lujan
@Solis Lujan
02/05/12 03:05:50AM
26 posts

Mast Brothers


Posted in: Geek Gear - Cool Tools

I won't try to recreate my lost reply since you have stated that you would revise you opinion about roasting cacao in a convection oven or at least I hope, see if it might be a viable alternative.

In regards to your November 21 reply, "why would I want to know what brand of convection oven used by the Mast Bros". It is sometimes not necessary to reinvent the wheel again and again. From what I know about the Mast Bros, they have put a lot of thought into the operation and manufacturing of their chocolate. They are the current darlings of the artisan chocolate world in the US. Thomas Keller, chef extraordinaire of the French Laundry, confers with them and only carries Mast Bros chocolate. I highly respect Keller's taste in anything having to do with food. Not to mention, the accolades the Mast bros have received in the last year. So yes, I am interested in the equipment they use. In addition, I too, have heard that Patric uses a convection oven to roast. In my book and in the world of chocolate, Patric is up there in international high regard.

Some of the professional convection ovens I have seen recently are phenomenal. The technology is there. They might be more of a hassle to clean than a conventional roasters, but have you cleaned a tempering machine. On the human level, we are masters of innovation and appropriation.

On another note, my current drug of choice happens to be Potomac's Upala 70%. Thanks Ben

Solis Lujan
@Solis Lujan
02/02/12 02:27:27PM
26 posts

Mast Brothers


Posted in: Geek Gear - Cool Tools

I believe Mast Brothers uses a Moffat Turbo convection oven, either the E-32 MS or the G32 MS. From my research, these seems to be the best in foot print size, price, and quality. They run in the price range of $2995/$5000 but I have seen them used for $1500. If you are looking for a new one, shop around, find the best price with no shipping cost or taxes.

If I am wrong on what Mast Brothers uses, I am sure Clay would know, if he is willing to share the info.

Solis Lujan
@Solis Lujan
11/13/11 04:55:10PM
26 posts

Mast Brothers


Posted in: Geek Gear - Cool Tools

Felipe Jaramillo Fonnegra , Thank you for the reply. The convection oven brand is not visible. I was at Mast Brothers last week and got a private tour but did not take note of the convection ovens. I will call them and ask.

Solis Lujan
@Solis Lujan
11/06/11 09:57:23AM
26 posts

Mast Brothers


Posted in: Geek Gear - Cool Tools

Can someone tell me the brand of convection oven the Mast Brothers use in their shop in Williamsburg.
updated by @Solis Lujan: 04/10/15 05:15:01PM
Solis Lujan
@Solis Lujan
10/28/11 12:51:00AM
26 posts

DessertsHouse.com Chocolate Melter


Posted in: Opinion

Panasonic Inverter Technology Microwave, 2.5 cubic feet.
Solis Lujan
@Solis Lujan
10/28/11 12:44:23AM
26 posts

Making bark with a tempering machine


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

You can make chocolate caramels, nuts, fruit and all. Also make a ganache filling.
Solis Lujan
@Solis Lujan
10/03/11 10:34:14PM
26 posts

Airbrushing assitance?


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

Certain colors do not mix well. The underlying pigments clash with one another and when mixes will turn muddy brown or gray. You can have a red with purple under tones and a red with yellow/green undertone that when mixed together will give you ghastly results. Do not mix complimentary colors unless you are trying to dull a color down, but do use them side by side to made your colors pop, like yellow next to purple. Get a color wheel at the art store, it will be of great help. If you want to take it further, a small watercolor set will show you what different colors do when mixed or sit next to each other. It is quite a science and one we normally do not pay too much attention to. Over time color mixing just becomes second nature.

When a color is translucent and is laid over another translucent color, it is the same as mixing colors.

I don't know if this is at all part of your problem, but this information might help you in your use of color. It does not matter if it is an oil painting or a chocolate bonbon, all the same.

Solis Lujan
@Solis Lujan
09/10/11 02:32:44AM
26 posts

Wholesale Candy bar wrappers ?


Posted in: Classifieds

Photoshop, your logo design, chocolate bar info, net weight/oz/grams of bar, dimension of bar +size of wrapper, fold lines, ( use another companies wrapper as a template, one which is the same size as your bar. Ingredients, nutritional facts, bar code. Take to a printer, choose paper. Any graphic artist or computer designer can do this, along with some computer geeks! Take to nice sized printing shop, choose paper. Order foil, again, go by the size of a company that has a bar similar to what you will be making. If you have an artist friend ask for help, pay them in chocolate. Alufoil Products will send you color samples of their foils.

You will have to get your bar code. Your chocolate supplier should have ingredient info and nutritional fact for their chocolate. This is all info you will have to come up with no matter who does your printing.

Solis Lujan
@Solis Lujan
07/27/12 12:55:11AM
26 posts

Chocolate Artist Software/Printer


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

Has anyone use gold metallic ink transfers on dark chocolate?

Solis Lujan
@Solis Lujan
08/28/11 01:37:59PM
26 posts

Chocolate Artist Software/Printer


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

Go to my Aug 13 post and see what Ran from Chocolate World said was on their transfer sheets. Powdered sugar is made of very fine milled sugar and corn starch, I assume that is what they used. Let us know if that works...
Solis Lujan
@Solis Lujan
08/25/11 11:38:50PM
26 posts

Chocolate Artist Software/Printer


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

Thanks Debra, I have the printer, I have the ink cartridges and I am ready to start experimenting with the Deco software. I will get back to Ran at Chocolate World and tell him the dilemma people are having with the flash stick. The PC/Mac transfer was very difficult, some instructions would have been nice.

Will post my results!!!

Solis Lujan
@Solis Lujan
08/25/11 11:54:08AM
26 posts

Chocolate Artist Software/Printer


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

Chocolate World finally got back to me, you are correct, cartridges are filled with ink and water.

So, has anyone filled their own cartridges or treated their own acetate sheets??

Solis Lujan
@Solis Lujan
08/14/11 10:57:57PM
26 posts

Chocolate Artist Software/Printer


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

I have a new Mac with PC capabilities, so I was able to download the software off the net and the flash pin from Chocolate World. But as I said, it was not a simple process, don't know if it was the PC software to Mac or what. I hope using the system is easier. As for the Transfer sheets, they do say Callebaut, but reading further down the label they say, "made for Barry-Callebaut by Chocolate World, Belgium". This is from Ran Dergent from Chocolate World,
Transfer sheets are completely coated with a mixture of sugar, starch and cacao butter to absorb the edible ink
and for transferring on chocolate, you cannot print on acetate sheets ! It will leak and not transfer.
Also from Ran Dergent, ink cartridges from Deco/Chocolate World are filled with colored cacao butter. I will check further with Ran.
*A note on having to print on white back ground, you should be able to print on milk or dark chocolate if white has been added to the inks/colors. It serves the same purpose as a white background. The white has to be from an opaque mineral source. Remember that when using natural colorings, you are using plant and mineral products, same as painting. Only some are edible, others are toxic.... There are also many un-natural edible inks/dyes on the market, suppliers don't tell you this, you have to ask. Europe has very stringent laws on toxicity levels of colorants, the US does not. Off on an other subject, but related.
Solis Lujan
@Solis Lujan
08/14/11 11:20:08AM
26 posts

Chocolate Artist Software/Printer


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

I just purchased the Deco Chocolate Artist software direct from Chocolate World and the Canon ip3600 from Amazon. The software came with no instructions as to how to download it on to the computer and connect it up to the free software off the internet from Deco, just a flash stick and that is all. In fact, all that is on the flash stick is a pin number that allows you to access the software you have already downloaded. When you plug it into the computer, nothing shows up on your screen, at least not on my Mac. It is very confusing and had to go to my computer tech to set it up. I have yet to start printing transfers and from what I can tell, I will have to have to work it out myself by trial and error. I do not mind if the end product is what I am after.

The blank transfer sheets I bought from Chocolate World were made by Callebaut and are lightly coated with cacao butter. I also purchased the cacao butter filled ink cartridges from Chocolate World. Has anyone used either of these two products?

The info in this discussion is very useful and greatly appreciated. I plan to test drive my Deco system this week, will share my results.....

Solis Lujan
@Solis Lujan
10/28/11 12:33:17AM
26 posts

Chocolate Drinking Machine Recommendations


Posted in: Geek Gear - Cool Tools

Let's see if I attach the photos correctly!!!

The interior looks a lot like a rice cooker, but the pan can not be removed. There is a small hole at the bottom where water flows through and then up the exterior tube that give you a visual water level. This is the part that confuses me as far as hot chocolate is concerned, if the tube is filled with a chocolate mixture, how do you clean it. There is just no physical way.

Maybe Clay knows something about this and has used the Zojirushi???

Hope these photos help....

Solis Lujan
@Solis Lujan
10/13/11 02:53:40PM
26 posts

Chocolate Drinking Machine Recommendations


Posted in: Geek Gear - Cool Tools

I just happen to have one of these Zojirushi's in my garage sale pile, which I just reclaimed. I also have the Italian made BRAS hot chocolate machine, but I am perplexed at the amount of plastic on a high end machine. If I did not know the machine was made in Italy, I would think it was made in China!! Anyone out there use the BRAS.

Clay, I just read your book, very nice, thanx. S.

Solis Lujan
@Solis Lujan
10/09/11 12:43:42AM
26 posts

Chocolate Drinking Machine Recommendations


Posted in: Geek Gear - Cool Tools

On the first days of what looks like long cold winter in Santa Fe, I am on my second cup of thick hot chocolate from Taza.

Just about a year later now, how is your hot chocolate dispenser working out. Did you purchase the BRAS Scirocco or the SF Cioccolata Calda. Have some questions but I will wait until I find out which one you bought....

Solis Lujan
@Solis Lujan
08/15/11 12:02:34AM
26 posts

a very simple or a very complicated question, please help.


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

I think what you need are some good lessons. Ecole Chocolat has some very very good online classes. Hate to be so blunt, but it will save you a lot of heartache.....