Forum Activity for @James Hull

James Hull
@James Hull
05/27/16 02:47:46PM
46 posts

bean to bar chocolate %'s question - help needed to put mind at rest


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

i did actually try searching the forums a bit earlier, but not a lot came up, will maybe do a bit more digging then.

Thanks for your reply though, that does clear it up for me.

Think it has largely been confusing terminology. found this online, let me know if you agree with it.

http://chocolateincontext.blogspot.co.uk/2007/08/chocolate-linguistics-2-cocoa-mass-v.html

so:

cocoa solids = anything that has come from a cocoa bean, be it the amount of actual beans you use and/or any added extra cocoa butter. Which would tie in with what you said about white chocolate

cocoa mass = 'the brown part' produced from pressing the liquour/solids i.e. cocoa powder

James Hull
@James Hull
05/27/16 11:37:07AM
46 posts

bean to bar chocolate %'s question - help needed to put mind at rest


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

hi Ben thanks so much for the reply.

So even though the 5% cocoa butter is an added extra to original 70% bean mix it gets included into the overall cocoa solids %?

Yet in white chocolate its said there is no cocoa solids, but its made using cocoa butter. So how can cocoa butter be classed as part of the cocoa solids when added extra into dark chocolate?

Would that then mean that 'cocoa solids' actually refer to what is essentially 'cocoa powder' that makes up 1/2 the cocoa bean? If thats the case then a 70% dark chocolate should actually be classed as a 35% cocoa solids?

It's something that has been plaguing me, and now got me horribly confused

James Hull
@James Hull
05/27/16 06:31:16AM
46 posts

bean to bar chocolate %'s question - help needed to put mind at rest


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


Hi everyone,

Curious about how to calculate the %'s in bean to bar chocolate, if making a 70% bar that needs maybe 5% added cocoa butter would the recipe be:

70% cocoa beans (35%cocoa+35%butter)

25% sugar

5% butter

OR:

65% cocoa beans (32.5%cocoa+32.5%butter)

30% sugar

5% butter

I suppose my main question is whether by adding extra cocoa butter comes under the total cocoa solids/beans %, or an added extra like sugar?

So for the two example recipes i posted, would the first be a 70% chocolate, and the 2nd be a 65% chocolate? or are they both 70% chocolates?

Hope this makes sense, and someone can put my mind at rest.


updated by @James Hull: 05/27/16 06:31:18AM
James Hull
@James Hull
05/23/16 11:49:05AM
46 posts

Anyone used or using the Santha 65/Santha 100? That has any views or thoughts on them


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

Hi Brian,

Thanks for the heads up, i got shipping confirmation today and requested tracking details so hopefully i can gauge when its going to arrive and be ready to collect. I just hope it turns up to an airport nearby. Also got crate size and weight details in case i turned up with a van to small. Thanks again, huge help.

James Hull
@James Hull
05/12/16 01:33:02PM
46 posts

Anyone used or using the Santha 65/Santha 100? That has any views or thoughts on them


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

Hi Brian,

thanks for taking the time to reply. You have certainly helped me make up my mind and I will place an order for the 65lb chain driven machine tonight. Did you order from SanthaUSA.com?

James Hull
@James Hull
05/04/16 03:33:18PM
46 posts

Anyone used or using the Santha 65/Santha 100? That has any views or thoughts on them


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

Hi,

thanks for the reply.

It sounds like a very good machine then. Thank you for sharing your view on it, its really helpful as for me being based in the UK these larger machines once shipped and customs sticking tax on it end up being very very expensive so chosing a good machine is crucial.

cheers,

James

James Hull
@James Hull
05/02/16 12:46:16PM
46 posts

Anyone used or using the Santha 65/Santha 100? That has any views or thoughts on them


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

Hi Sandy,

Thanks so much for replying!

A very apt name for your salesman then, is on the same line as my dentist name being Dr Pulley.

I am glad you have had a good experience with the machine, as i havent had any experience with the santhas yet, only having small premier grinders. I have been wary of purchasing the santha grinder due to reviews of their smaller grinder machines are not all that brilliant, with people having problems with overheating, and the belts constantly breaking. But i believe their larger grinders use chain belts which should help?

The santha machines appear to be the only larger grinders available in the UK, which certainly goes in it favour, as otherwise it means paying a massive shipping cost with added customs and other taxes added if i were to buy a cocoatown, fbm, or the new large grinder from DCM who make my small premiers.

Thanks again for your insight, and hopefully other users will also add their experiences too

James Hull
@James Hull
04/28/16 09:45:06AM
46 posts

Anyone used or using the Santha 65/Santha 100? That has any views or thoughts on them


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


Hi Everyone,

I am now at the stage of looking to upgrade from my several tabletop premier grinders, to one machine that will handle much more chocolate, and with room to 'grow into'.

Not a lot available here in the UK apart from the Santha machines. I am looking at the Santa 65 the 100, but reading reviews on here about the smaller santhas have got me wondering if these are the right units to be look at.

So any reviews, tips, thoughts, recommendations would be brilliant.

I am also looking at a commercial grinder from the makers of the small premier units (Diamond Custom Machines) so if anyone has also used one of these and could let me know how they got on that would be great.

Thanks,

James


updated by @James Hull: 07/20/16 03:34:41PM
James Hull
@James Hull
04/04/16 02:08:41PM
46 posts

Premier Wonder Grinder Help


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

Hi Tim,

I had exactly the same issue with my premier grinder a little while, and it makes everything look pretty dammed gross. However....

I found a few ways of dealing with it:

1- after each batch you make clean the grinder bowl and remove the wheels from the axels and clean inside them with a pipe cleaner really thoroughly (as everyone has already suggested) - then dry them in the oven to ensure all water has evaporated

2- when re-fitting the wheels on the axels make sure there is a bit of the axel still poking out from the wheel so that when you tighten the nut onto the washer, the wheelse still move very freely, this is largely only a problem i found by cleaning multiple machines at the same time, as not all the wheelse are made exactly the same width.

3- adjust the plastic scraper arm thing so that it is not directly up against the metal side of the bowl when you have full tension screwed down onto the stone wheels. This was where i noticed the biggest cause of that grey stuff you see, it actually seems to be largely caused by the plastic scraper rubbing against the metal bowl side and very slowly creating fine metal dust particles. Over a short period this wouldnt cause a problem and wouldnt be noticeable enough (these machine are only made to be used for maximum 30minutes) but over say 12-24hour period like we use for grinding the chocolate and sugar down, these metal particles scrape off, and build up and up and then discolour the chocolate. Similar sort of thing if you ever take bits off a car for example, black stuff builds up parts that rub against each other

4- warm the bowl and stone wheels with a hairdryer or heat gun before adding ingredients, also helps to warm your liquid ingredients before adding too.

Hope that helps, it worked for me and since have had no problems.

James Hull
@James Hull
03/31/16 11:13:30AM
46 posts

Help needed for a pest issue - 'warehouse moth'


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

Cheers Clay, that looks like a great option! i will contact HCS today and see what sort of price they go for

James Hull
@James Hull
03/04/16 10:19:34AM
46 posts

Help needed for a pest issue - 'warehouse moth'


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

While i go about making friends with a bar manager for some access and help with using CO2, i wonder if anyone has maybe used an oxygen absorber pack instead?

Looks like the idea would be to store the beans in an airtight storage container, or a grain pro bag (as earlier mentioned) and put one of these oxygen absorber packs inside. This then supposedly absorbs all remaining oxygen. I assume this would take longer than using the CO2 method, but would it eventually have the same results without having to use CO2?

Alternatively i also read about creating an actual suction chamber, similar to those bag things that you store duvets in etc and then remove the air with a vacuum cleaner. Any thoughts on whether that method could also yield good results?

James Hull
@James Hull
02/08/16 08:29:53AM
46 posts

Help needed for a pest issue - 'warehouse moth'


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

Sorry i posted that before properly reading Jordans earlier post.

I will contact my main supplier in Nicaragua and see if they can sort out some of these grainpro bags as they sound like a step in the right direction.

Also i will look into getting the one that CO2 can be used with for treating my current stock of cocoa beans and give it a test.

Will report back with my findings.

James Hull
@James Hull
02/08/16 06:46:14AM
46 posts

Help needed for a pest issue - 'warehouse moth'


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

Some brilliant suggestions here, and I am glad it has created a discussion about an issue that will unfortunately likely affect us all at some point, and perhaps a topic which producers don't like to discuss in the open (just from my experience in trying to find info on these moths). 

This is the first I have heard of the grain-pro bags, and they sound great. But like Sebastian I too would be concerned about high moisture trapped in the sealed bag, and essentially 'sweating' in warmer high humidity environments.

I unfortunately do not have access to a large cool room in which to store my beans and so stop the hatching of the eggs. Mine are stored in my workshop and the temp can range anywhere from 10-25 degrees centigrade depending on our unreliable british weather. So I am certainly interested in any other way to prevent or combat a moth infestation. 

So far the CO2 method seems most efficient and organic, but what's the safest way to go about treating the beans in this way?

James Hull
@James Hull
01/20/16 06:14:19AM
46 posts

Help needed for a pest issue - 'warehouse moth'


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

Cheers Sebastian, its good to actually get advice on preventions as the Rentokil bloke was helpful in telling me how to chuck everything and cleanse the room, but not very good at saying how to prevent future attacks. The room generally is quite cold, although i dont actually have access to a walk in refrigerator which would be handy. We had an unusually hot and humid late autumn/beginning of winter this year unfortunately so i dont think that has helped. Researched some preventions yesterday and the pheremone traps sound like a great idea, also perhaps oddly, bay leaves dotted around and a tub of vinegar is a good prevention...who knew.

I also saw on chocolate alchemy that dry ice is a good thing to use to kill of anything living within the beans when they arrive. Have you used this method?

James Hull
@James Hull
01/18/16 06:41:22AM
46 posts

Help needed for a pest issue - 'warehouse moth'


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

Hi thanks guys for your advice, its reasurring to know that its not just me and these beans that have had this problem. Sebastian, you mentioned they will always eventually occur if improperly stored, how best would you recommend storing the cocoa beans in order to minimise the chances of these moths taking hold? Currently i store them inside and have a UV fly zapper which helps, but i wondered if there were better precautions to make.

I have just discussed concerns i had with Rentokil (hope these answers can help others):

1)are they poisonous/dangerous to health - No, but like any living organism there is always the chance of bacteria being transferred

2) Do they just attack cocoa or attack finished chocolate also - predominantly they will only attack cocoa beans as that is their prefferred food source

3) What do the eggs look like - white/creamy, but also tiny, will only see them through a microscope

4) Can you safely fumigate the coca beans leaving them safe to use - Yes but the process is very expensive, starting at £3,000. So need to outweigh the cost of destroying beans, fumigating the room (normal non-food safe approx £400) and starting fresh, against using food safe fumigation (£3,000) which leaves the beans safe to use.

5) Once fumigated whats the risk of return - always a risk, moths are very common problem although not many want to admit to having it for obvious reasons, but everyone will likely have a problem with the moths at some point when dealing with cocoa beans.

Any more advice and experience to this thread would be great as i think its a problem that might not be discussed enough, but a problem that it seems is inevitable.

James Hull
@James Hull
01/15/16 10:25:57AM
46 posts

Help needed for a pest issue - 'warehouse moth'


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


Hi everyone,

not sure how common this is as i cant find much information about it. Basically i got a small sample of cocoa beans from venezuela, didn't get around to trying them out for several months, but i just came to trial them out and found a weird bug/lavae type thing on the inside of the sack, at first i thought it might be just a random bug as i have never come across it before, however i roasted a batch 130 centigrade for about 15mins. But cracked open a bean to test the nib flavour and found another lavae inside it. I did a bit of research and found that it could be the 'warehouse moth'. But no information on how to go about getting rid of it.

Has anyone else had a similar issue, or heard of these pests? and what can be done to either get rid of them? or what process do you undertake to sort out beans with potential bugs against safe beans?

major help needed as concerned about ordering any large amount, from what is otherwise a very nice flavoured bean.

 

thanks

James

James Hull
@James Hull
09/25/15 12:02:58PM
46 posts

Franceshi Chocolate - Anyone had experience with there cocoa beans?


Posted in: Opinion

Thanks Clay, i must confess i hadnt actually heard of them before so was curious to see if anyone had used them on here. I am meeting with a Casa Franceshi representative, Juan Diego Franceshi, on tuesday in London so sounds promising that they have either warehoused it in the UK or in Europe.

James Hull
@James Hull
09/22/15 07:17:58AM
46 posts

Franceshi Chocolate - Anyone had experience with there cocoa beans?


Posted in: Opinion

Hi everyone,

I recently got into contact with someone from Franceshi Chocolate about buying some of their cocoa beans, has anyone used them for their bean to bar chocolate, or anyone had any experience with them?

James Hull
@James Hull
07/16/15 03:46:07AM
46 posts

Mold Release / Ring Formation Issue in Mold


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

Hi Kerry,

I will try the different suggestions, although i may just end up leaving it with the weird cirle in the centre for now as the rest has a nice glaze, until i can afford some polycarbonate ones to be made.

James Hull
@James Hull
07/10/15 09:53:51AM
46 posts

Mold Release / Ring Formation Issue in Mold


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

As frustrating as it is, i fear i am going to have to admit defeat to the release marks on my chocolate bars and simply make do for now. I reckon i have tried everything now, from various different methods of cooling, to warming the mould first at different temps, and finally today i got round testing out the theory of strengthening my thermoformed mould with a metal bracket on the back in the hope that this would fix the issue. sadly it hasnt. The most annoying thing is i still have no idea WHY it leaves this mark on the chocolate, my square bars are only 8cm x 8cm, but obviously this is a big enough flat surface like Michael says to be an issue. Any extra ideas would be very welcome.....

James Hull
@James Hull
07/08/15 05:30:21AM
46 posts

Mold Release / Ring Formation Issue in Mold


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

I am currently having the same issue with my chocolate bar moulds, temperature of the tempered chocolate is correct, tested it on back of palette knife and the chocolate sets hard with no streaks, yet when it comes out of the mould I get these light swirls just on the centre of the bars. After reading this I warmed the moulds before pouring, and also increased airflow with use of a fan and some cooling racks for setting, room temp is about 20degrees C so not too cold, yet I am still having the exact same issue. Also tried various cooling methods such as total set in fridge, total set at room temp, mix of fridge and room temp setting but still same outcome. So I now agree with Larry and think it could be because unlike poly moulds, my thermoformed moulds are more flexible and so are actually flexing with the contracting chocolate and leaving this middle circle bit (that doesn't flex) to set differently. Will try strengthening the moulds today and will report back with my findings.

James Hull
@James Hull
07/08/15 05:14:04AM
46 posts

Tempering Issues


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

Hi Larry, thanks for the link. It does sound very similar to the issue I am having, I tend to agree with your theory that the light thermoformed plastic mould is flexing with the chocolate as it contracts and then leaving this middle circle area. Going to try and strengthen moulds today and see how it goes, will also post in other thread my findings.

James Hull
@James Hull
07/07/15 06:52:42AM
46 posts

Tempering Issues


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

Hi everyone, been having some tempering issues with my chocolate. I melt using a mol d'art chocolate melter, temper everything by hand using a marble slab etc then put into another mol d'art melter at the tempered temperature to hold it while i use it. However i keep getting these odd light swirls just around the centre of my bars. The rest of the bar turns out nice with a decent gloss finish and good snap. I always check the chocolate temp before use, and always do a back of palette knife test, and that alwasy sets hard with no streaks. yet when i de-mould the bars they all have these swirls, any suggestions? really want an even gloss finish.


P1040276.jpg P1040276.jpg - 595KB
James Hull
@James Hull
07/07/15 05:37:30AM
46 posts

changing the belt on premier wonder grinder


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

I finally got round to ordering these powertwist belts, difficult to find here in the UK so unfortunately had to import them but hopefully will be worh the extra cost. The instructions are very over simplified, so will soon be creating a step by step photo guide to fitting the new belts which hopefully people will find useful. So far they are working great. they look like this when fitted:

James Hull
@James Hull
06/01/15 04:57:44AM
46 posts

changing the belt on premier wonder grinder


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

Hi everyone,

my 2ltr tabletop premier wonder grinder has finally got to the stage where the belt is 'shedding' and creating black dust within the machine. I am looking to change the belt and saw in a few discussions about getting a powertwist belt, but i am not sure which one i would need, the only info on the belt i currently have is 'Ecodrive FHP 2190', so am unsure what that refers to as size etc. can anyone help? also i have been recommended a 'polyurethane belt' does anyone know if this is better or worse than a fibreglass one?

cheers,

 

James


updated by @James Hull: 07/07/15 05:37:25AM
James Hull
@James Hull
04/14/15 08:02:32AM
46 posts

cocoa bean cut test, advice and help needed!


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

Hi Sebastian,

thanks for the info. on tasting the different coloured beans i was getting the flavours exactly as you describe. I have made a few batches, and have been pretty happy with the outcomes so far, so with that in mind, and the fact that i am just starting out so very small productions at the moment i will just carry on, using your advice. However as demand seems to be growing i may have a bit more leverage with my supplier to do like you suggest and send a small test batch before I bulk buy.

Thanks for the help

James Hull
@James Hull
03/27/15 04:45:21PM
46 posts

cocoa bean cut test, advice and help needed!


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

Hi Larry, 

i saw this link posted to someone else on here (think due to their roasting issues) which is what made me think that I have never actually checked the beans using a cut test, and now I am wondering whether I should mention/complain about the fairly major differences between just 100g of these beans. I don't suppose there is much I can do if they are under fermented is there?

James Hull
@James Hull
03/27/15 11:02:59AM
46 posts

cocoa bean cut test, advice and help needed!


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

Hi everyone,

read on here that it is a good idea to do a cut test of the fermented cocoa beans when they arrive. So i took a 100g sample of the cocoa bean and started chopping them up. I have a little picture table with examples of what the colours in the beans mean/represent, and am now a bit concerned about some of the ones i have cut up. I have attached pictures and grouped them in their colours. First one (biggest group) is the partly purple-chocolately brown coloured ones which are all good?

2nd group (and 2nd largest group) are these yellow/brown ones, i am worried these are mouldy? or maybe overfermented?

3rd group are these very obvious purple ones i am not sure if this is a good purple or a bad insufficiently fermented purple? plus one of these purple beans has a bit of white on it, not sure what this is? 

this last group of just the one bean was a very dark brown and was very crumbly which i think probably means it has been overfermented?

any help and advice would be brilliant. i dont know if this is quite common to have such a variety in just 100g or not, and so i dont know whether i should keep using them, or contact my supplier etc.

cheers chocolate community!

 


updated by @James Hull: 04/09/15 06:12:07AM
James Hull
@James Hull
03/27/15 11:00:28AM
46 posts

cocoa bean cut test, advice and help much needed!



Hi everyone,

read on here that it is a good idea to do a cut test of the fermented cocoa beans when they arrive. So i took a 100g sample of the cocoa bean and started chopping them up. I have a little picture table with examples of what the colours in the beans mean/represent, and am now a bit concerned about some of the ones i have cut up. I have attached pictures and grouped them in their colours. First one (biggest group) is the partly purple-chocolately brown coloured ones which are all good?

2nd group (and 2nd largest group) are these yellow/brown ones, i am worried these are mouldy? or maybe overfermented?

3rd group are these very obvious purple ones i am not sure if this is a good purple or a bad insufficiently fermented purple? plus one of these purple beans has a bit of white on it, not sure what this is? 

this last group of just the one bean was a very dark brown and was very crumbly which i think probably means it has been overfermented?

any help and advice would be brilliant. i dont know if this is quite common to have such a variety in just 100g or not, and so i dont know whether i should keep using them, or contact my supplier etc.

cheers chocolate community!


updated by @James Hull: 04/09/15 06:12:08AM
James Hull
@James Hull
03/26/15 11:04:05AM
46 posts

cocoa bean cut test, need help and your advice



Hi everyone,

read on here that it is a good idea to do a cut test of the fermented cocoa beans when they arrive. So i took a 100g sample of the cocoa bean and started chopping them up. I have a little picture table with examples of what the colours in the beans mean/represent, and am now a bit concerned about some of the ones i have cut up. I have attached pictures and grouped them in their colours. First one (biggest group) is the partly purple-chocolately brown coloured ones which are all good?

2nd group (and 2nd largest group) are these yellow/brown ones, i am worried these are mouldy? or maybe overfermented?

3rd group are these very obvious purple ones i am not sure if this is a good purple or a bad insufficiently fermented purple? plus one of these purple beans has a bit of white on it, not sure what this is? 

this last group of just the one bean was a very dark brown and was very crumbly which i think probably means it has been overfermented?

any help and advice would be brilliant. i dont know if this is quite common to have such a variety in just 100g or not, and so i dont know whether i should keep using them, or contact my supplier etc.

cheers chocolate community!


updated by @James Hull: 04/09/15 06:12:09AM
James Hull
@James Hull
02/24/15 04:45:56AM
46 posts

HACCP example for bean to bar chocolate?


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

Michael - we have to do a HACCP, accident and incident report diary, temperature charts etc. We get graded from 0-5 stars for health and hygiene and to get full 5 stars all paperwork need to be in order, such as this HACCP.

Thanks for the really helpful responses, i will now try finish my HACCP

James Hull
@James Hull
02/24/15 04:22:57AM
46 posts

Small/Medium Sized Grinders


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

Hi Michael,

I dont have the tilting one i have the other 2ltr tabletop one, i will try add a picture.

I did also think about getting the tilting one for the same reason as you but i had a horrible thought that it may wobble a lot (as it looks quite top heavy), shift something loose that holds it upright, and suddenly tilt in the middle of the night whilst conching and pour my chocolate everywhere, i am sure that this wouldnt happen, but even so i thought best to stick with the machine that i have used and tested and know that it is capable of running for days without overheating.

 

James

James Hull
@James Hull
02/23/15 06:00:53AM
46 posts

HACCP example for bean to bar chocolate?


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

Hi,

So from initially experimenting, to it being a hobby and now amazingly to hopefully starting a small bean to bar chocolate business, i now need to be food hygiene certified in able to sell to the public. The last thing i need to do is a HACCP for it. The standard template ones are not really relevant to making chocolate from the bean, so am going to have to create my own. Does anyone have an example of a HACCP that they have used for their food safety paperwork, that i could perhaps see to help me create my own one? as i have not had to do a HACCP since food tech at school!

thanks,

 

James


updated by @James Hull: 04/09/15 06:12:10AM
James Hull
@James Hull
02/23/15 05:48:14AM
46 posts

Small/Medium Sized Grinders


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

Hi Dom,

recently had a similar dilemma and looked a lot into the santha and cocoatown products as they seem to be the only step up in volume from my 2ltr premier grinder without spending 1000's on a much larger machine. However I decided to buy 4x more 2ltr premier grinders for the same reasons as already mentioned, they work hard (i run mine for over 60hours at a time and is still going strong...touch wood), and cheap in comparison to other machines. So now can produce 10kg at any one time

a bit of a tip though is if you are buying from amazon, directly contact the company supplying the machines and mention you are planning on buying multiple machines and ask if they will supply you directly (as they normally have to pay high selling fees to amazon) would they consider offering each machine at a discounted price. I did this and they offered £25 off each machine i bought so saved total £100! then got a proper VAT invoice from them which i then claimed back and saved a further 20%, so the machines worked out very reasonable indeed.

also if you do run into problems with the machines, DMenkes who is a member here posted a really helpful servicing/repair guide online

http://www.instructables.com/id/Premier-Wonder-Grinder-Repair-Belts-and-Gears/

James Hull
@James Hull
01/29/15 08:15:48AM
46 posts

Looking to purchase 65lb grinder/melanger


Posted in: Classifieds

i would be very interested in the larger premier grinders as i currently use 4x of the 2ltr tabletop ones, and have had no problems runnning chocolate for days at a time in them. Real work horses

James Hull
@James Hull
12/15/14 05:49:28AM
46 posts

Tempering


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

Hi Gap,

thanks again for the reply. These look like a great option, but how do you work it? as in do you melt all your chocolate in one tank between 45-50c then temper on marble and put into other tank set at 31C to hold temper during the day? or do you melt in both tanks to 45C,take out approx 2/3 of melted chocolate, cool on marble, then add back into same tank but turning down the temp to 31C to hold the now tempered chocolate? or do you melt, remove it all, temper then put back into tank at lower temp?

cheers

James Hull
@James Hull
12/08/14 12:58:25PM
46 posts

Tempering


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

Hi Gap,

thanks for your very helpful reply. Are the holding tanks called 'chocolate melters' by mol d'art? as looked on their website but couldn't find anything referred to as a holding tank. something called a chocolate kettle but that was insanely expensive. How much chocolate do you work with throughout the day in your tank?

thanks again

James Hull
@James Hull
11/27/14 05:20:20AM
46 posts

Tempering


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

Hi everyone,

I am currently tempering all my bean to bar chocolate by hand on a marble slab and I love doing it this way, however asdemandgrows, so does the pressure of tempering in small batches.

I am wondering if there is aheated holding tank out there, that I cantemper a large batch of chocolate by hand and then transfer into the holding tank. BUT willthe holding tank keep the chocolate in temper throughout the day or at least for a few hours while I remove the amount of chocolate I wantfrom it (already tempered)for different applications without having to constantly re-temper it. OR am I over complicating things and should invest in a tempering machine? if that's the case then which one? As I am in the UKit seemsany chocolate related machine is difficult to come by so am in much need of advice.

thanks


updated by @James Hull: 04/13/15 04:29:34AM
James Hull
@James Hull
08/20/14 07:18:47AM
46 posts

problem with the premier grinder!


Posted in: Tasting Notes

That does sound like it might be what it is, as it seems to be liquid when warmed and goes hard when cooled. I heard back from the company who have apparently sent out a brand new machine which Is not what I was expecting but great! only wanted to know if they had seen it before. I will use your advice on the new machine and clean it first with oil and sugar, and clean inside the wheels thoroughly too after every batch.

Thanks for the help.

James Hull
@James Hull
08/19/14 07:18:46AM
46 posts

problem with the premier grinder!


Posted in: Tasting Notes

Hi Gap,

Thanks for the reply. I didn't run oil and sugar through it when I got it, I washed everything, but didn't even occur to me to run oil and sugar through it. Does it have to be much of each to 'clean' it? and I will give that a go. I have cleaned off all the horrible black gunge stuff now, and hopefully that was the last of it.

I have been cleaning the wheels by dismantling it, but left the 'grease' stuff on the axles as I assumed that must be there for a reason and would be properly sealed....but I was wrong. I am still waiting to hear back from the company who told me they were going to take one apart to look at it. also got some samples to send to environmental health just in case.

thanks for the advice

James Hull
@James Hull
08/14/14 05:07:03AM
46 posts

problem with the premier grinder!


Posted in: Tasting Notes

Hi everyone,

have been using my premier 2ltr wet stone grinder but have run into a potential disaster.

I have only used it 3 times so far and its been brilliant, however on my last run on it some sickly looking dark green/black liquid was coming out from the axle and wheels and running into the delicious chocolate!

Firstly I am unsure what it is, it kind of looks like car grease which is not good.

2nd is it food safe? can I go ahead and taste the chocolate I made or should I condemn the entire batch?

3rd - is this normal? has anyone else come across this problem before?

I have attached some photos to give you a better idea of what I am up against. I have also contacted the company I purchased the machine from and await their response.

any help much appreciated

James

P1020822%20copy.jpg P1020817%20copy.jpg P1020820%20copy.jpgP1020821%20copy.jpg P1020815%20copy.JPG P1020814.jpg


updated by @James Hull: 04/14/15 03:53:09AM
James Hull
@James Hull
03/03/14 10:53:05AM
46 posts

which is the best grinder/melanger to buy??


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

After your advice and recommendation I am going to go for a premier grinder. From what you and Gap have said the 1.5ltr machine seems to have no problems running for long period of times and has good durability. I was wondering whether or not you have tried/tested the slightly larger premier 2ltr grinder (tilting and no-tilting version)to see whether it is as good as the 1.5ltr one.

1