Forum Activity for @Ian Horvath

IH
@IH
05/17/16 10:19:41PM
23 posts

CocoaTown Tension Adjustment Hack


Posted in: Geek Gear - Cool Tools

Ok so I just found this on their website. They offer for you to send in your old arm and they make the adjustment, this kind of tells me it is not that big of deal. Anyone know where I can get an assembly like this...Maybe Ace hardware?


Tension Cocoatown.JPG.jpg Tension Cocoatown.JPG.jpg - 20KB
IH
@IH
05/17/16 10:13:08PM
23 posts

CocoaTown Tension Adjustment Hack


Posted in: Geek Gear - Cool Tools


Hi!

I have a Cocoatown ECGC 12SL (the smallest machine they make) without a tension adjustment, my machine is about 2.5 years old. I have noticed it does not refine as fine as before and my chocolate is coming out consistently coarser and coarser, so I want to add a Tension adjustment. I know they sell a machine with the adjustment but I don't want to buy another when it looks like they just drilled through the top and added a turning knob. I have never seen one of these in person so I am going off only what they have on their website. I think it would be as easy as drilling through the top bar and adding an adjustable knob to push down on the spring already there...any thoughts?

Can someone direct me to a way I can make this modification without destroying my machine? Thanks.

IH
@IH
02/04/16 11:41:43PM
23 posts

Cocoa butter infusion


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

Just to report back for anyone interested. I did a small batch 1.5Kg of 70% Dark. I tried the sugar method and blended the sugar and lavender flowers in a food processor prior to putting them in the melanger and it came out fantastic for a first time trial. The lavender was a little light for my tastes so I will be upping it slightly, but overall it is a good start. Thanks Clay for the suggestion.

IH
@IH
01/28/16 10:40:36AM
23 posts

Cocoa butter infusion


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

Thanks Clay and Daniel. I really like the suggestion of pre grinding the sugar and flowers together! I may end of doing a combination of all three processes (cocoa butter, everclear, and sugar) to see what the result will be. Thanks for all the suggestions, I always know I can come here for the answers!

IH
@IH
01/26/16 08:44:54AM
23 posts

Cocoa butter infusion


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

I am using a deodorized cocoa butter, the taste I am getting is mainly the cocoa butter. 

IH
@IH
01/25/16 11:21:01PM
23 posts

LARGE SELECTION OF CHOCOLATE MANUFACTURING EQUIPMENT FOR SALE AND RETAIL ITEMS


Posted in: Classifieds

Hi, I am very interested in the Spectra 40 grinder. I can be reached at Ianhorvath@gmail.com or 602-434-7034. Thanks. 

IH
@IH
01/25/16 11:12:38PM
23 posts

Cocoa butter infusion


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

Hi, 
I am looking for some advice on how to infuse cocoa butter with lavender. I currently have tried a Bain-Marie, with cocoa butter and lavender flowers. It reached and stayed at 180degrees for 20 mins. I strained the lavender out and let it cool and it still has a very cocoa butter taste and A very very slight lavender taste. Is there a better way to do this? Also will the taste be blown away if I place it into the melanger at the beginning with the nibs and sugar? Should I wait til the last hour or so of grinding to add the cocoa butter to preserve the lavender taste? Thanks for the advice. 

-Ian

IH
@IH
08/16/15 06:46:23PM
23 posts

Behmore or oven


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

Hi,

I am searched around the site and cannot find a comparison on the Behmore 1600 Plus and a traditional oven. The reason I am looking for such a comparision is because I have recently moved into a new place and the oven is absolute crap. The temp is always 50-90F above the indicated turn dial temp. I have only roasted a few batches and each time I have to literally sit by the oven, alternating between turning it on and off and opening the door to vent it. This is the only way I can keep the temperature within a 20F range. 

So I am looking for another option. It is a rental unit so I do not want to buy an oven or hack up the current one. The only thing I can seem to find is the Behmore 1600 PLUS. It looks really nice, priced a little high for me, but overall looks like a good machine. My only problem with it is I do not know the roasting temperatures! So evenually when I have a commerical space I will not be able to accurately transfer my roasting times into a bigger capicity. Maybe I am wrong about this?

 

Thoughts? Is it worth the money for a Behmore and control over temp? or should I just sit by the oven? Any thoughts?

IH
@IH
07/08/15 09:50:13AM
23 posts

Brazil Roast


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

Thanks guys I will go back to the drawing board with my roasting and see what comes of it. Just needed some encouragement and a light at the end of the tunnel. 

IH
@IH
07/07/15 01:18:51AM
23 posts

Brazil Roast


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

Hi,

I am sorry if this is in the wrong category, but I am looking for some help on my roasting of an Organic Brazil bean. It is an organic Forastero Bean which has good flavor but I am still upable to kick this annoying astrigency. My most successful roast is 8 Mins 250F and then 8 Mins 200F. After a 24 hour grind in a small CocoaTown I am still finding it to contain some undesirable astringency at 50-70% Sugar. So I am looking for roasting suggestions or anything really. I feel I may have hit a wall with these beans and looking for a little guiding light. Any help? I can provide more information if that would help just let me know! Thank you in advance.   

IH
@IH
03/22/15 06:08:17PM
23 posts

BonBon Capping Issues


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

Interesting, I think that could be it. So then to rememdy the situation I should keep the walls thicker, and try to keep the base the same thickness as the walls?

IH
@IH
03/22/15 03:50:34PM
23 posts

BonBon Capping Issues


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

Yes I noticed these walls were pretty thin. What do you mean the bottom is expanding? I was under the assumption chocolate contacted slightly once set.

Could it be the walls were too cold when I appied the cap and it was not able to melt and reset into one piece? 

IH
@IH
03/22/15 02:20:54PM
23 posts

BonBon Capping Issues


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

Hi,

So I have been making chocolate bon bons and the area where the cap and the walls of the bonbon are suppost to meet and melt together have not been lately. There is a hairline crack going all the way around the chocolate and therefore the bottoms fall off when I unmold them. Are my walls too thin? I am not sure how to correct this? Photos attached, any comments appreciated.


image (1).jpeg - 1.9MB

updated by @IH: 04/10/15 10:09:48AM
IH
@IH
02/12/15 01:02:37PM
23 posts

Mottled Tempered Bars


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

I am working in a kitchen it is about 70F so I would think that would be optimal. Anyways I was trying to figure it out last night and came aross that if I put a blowdryer on it while it is still in the heating up stage then the temper came out perfect. In conjunction with what you are saying about the mixing it was helping it to mix a little more. I am not sure what the problem is but this is a fix for now. Have you experienced this problem with the larger ChocoVision machines such as the X3210 and Delta Series?

IH
@IH
02/10/15 10:38:37PM
23 posts

Mottled Tempered Bars


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

Some more photos.

image (3).jpegimage.jpeg

image (2).jpegimage (1).jpeg

IH
@IH
02/10/15 10:32:57PM
23 posts

Mottled Tempered Bars


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

I am getting issues with my molded bars looking mottled on the side open to the air. I am not sure why this is happening and it only seems to happen to about 8 of the 16 bars I can mold at one time. So not a great success rate.

I have been molding chocolate for some time now and have been doing it by hand until recently. I bought a ChocoVision Revolution 1 ( I think it is now called a Rev Mini) in July 2014. I have been using it pretty heavily and up until a month ago it has done great. No issues, it tempered fine and I never doubted it, but now I am loosing nearly half my batch each time I run it. What baffles me is that some may come out completely perfect and then others exhibit the streaking and mottledness seen in the photos. 

I have numbered the molds to see if it was in the beginning or end of the batch and they occur randomly, one mold may be fine, the next not fine. One bar out of my 3 bar mold may be perfect while the others look shotty. I am at a loss. I read somewhere that washing the baffle with the temperature probe on it in too hot of water may damage the reading of it, but I have checked the temper with 2 independent thermometers while it is tempering and everything seems to be spot on for the machine. 

Lastly, I can tell if the bars are going to be mottled or not after about 2 minutes of them being in the mold. So my workflow is I laddle the chocolate into the mold. Tap on table to release any bubbles, and use an offset metal spatula to scrap off the excess chocolate to make the bars flat. Then place them on the table while I finish my batch. When I pick them up to put them into a wine fridge (set at about 61-65F) I look at them and can instantly see which ones have the mottled look and can see where the others are going to getting the streaking...

 

Any thoughts? 


image.jpeg - 1.9MB

updated by @IH: 04/12/15 03:22:55PM
IH
@IH
01/27/15 02:12:41PM
23 posts

Air Agitation Conche


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

Thanks Clay. I will try option 1 out.

IH
@IH
01/26/15 10:28:50PM
23 posts

Air Agitation Conche


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

So maybe I am going out on a limb here but I am looking to create a dedicated conching machine for home use. I have looked at possibly doing a metal bowl with a drill over the top pointed down with a baffle attached at the end to agitate the chocolate. I am sure this will work with a pod pad to provide the heating element, and a stand to hold the drill and keep pressure on the trigger.  

Option 2 which is the one I am more interested in to see if it works. Imagine a glass or plastic container, taller than wider, filled with chocolate. Through the bottom and possibly the sides if need be there would be air nozzles through which air would be coming out of. Think an aerator in a fish tank, I would probably use one of these to make a easy. The air would be passing through at a near constant stream going through the chocolate and in turn, I hope, agitating the chocolate.

Would this agitate at the required force to actually turn over and coat the cocoa particles for a noticable different?

Would the chocolate fill with so many micro air bubbles that it would be a major pain to release them all when it came time to mold into bars?

IF this seems like a crack-pot theory/idea, has anyone made conche machines? I am having a hard time finding any at the home level (I doubt they exist) and as for commerical grade (even large ones) I am having a hard time finding them.

Suggestions, comments, all are welcome.

 


updated by @IH: 04/18/15 02:28:52PM
IH
@IH
01/26/15 10:01:32PM
23 posts

A chocolate blogger on Bainbridge Island, near Seattle


Posted in: Allow Me to Introduce Myself

Can't wait to read what you taste on in Washington State!

IH
@IH
10/20/14 03:24:09PM
23 posts

Francois Pralus


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

Interesting. Just wondering what he was talking about. Much appreciated.

IH
@IH
10/20/14 12:58:13AM
23 posts

Francois Pralus


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

So searching around the internet and came across this interesting quote on Francois' website:

Franois Pralusgives away one of his little secrets to give us a more precise idea of how he obtains the right flavour before he starts to manufacture:
"I brew the cocoa in water, rather like making herbal tea and sweeten it slightly with sugar, then I leave it to settle. This gives me a precise idea of what the flavour will be like before I launch the manufacturing process."

Has anyone ever heard of this or tried this?


updated by @IH: 04/12/15 05:13:32AM
IH
@IH
03/14/14 01:06:43AM
23 posts

Dry Chocolate Feel?


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

Hello Everyone,

This is my first time posting and I am very excited as I have just started my chocolate journey. I have recently made my first batch of chocolate and I am looking for some feedback on ways to improve everything about my process. So here is goes...

I am using a CocoaTown ECGC-12SL melanger. I have decided not to roast my beans (a discussion for later as I would like to hear people's thoughts on roasting vs non-roasting).

So from the un-roasted cocoa nib (I did 400g of them) I then ground them into a fine paste and put them in the melanger. After 12 hours of them being ground down they were at the liquid stage, and I then added 120g (30% by weight) of sugar that I had pre-whipped in a food processor to make it powdered sugar to the melanger. After another 3 hours I stopped the machine and decided the chocolate was at the stage I wanted it.

when I stuck my spoon into the still liquid chocolate I was surprised that it was not half bad for my first try but at the same time it stuck to my teeth in a DRY-like manner. I am not quite sure how to explain it, it was not gummy or unrefined (it was very smooth without any large sugar or nib pieces) but it had this dry like quality.

So I decided to temper it anyways and placed it in molds. The next day I came back to taste the chocolate again and it still had this dry texture that usually presented itself on the second bite of a piece. I am not sure if I may need to add more cocoa butter to smooth this out of what.

Like a I said before my chocolate only has the nibs (a crillio variety) and powdered sugar (I powered it myself). Could it possibly be that because I powdered the sugar myself that this dry quality came into effect?

Thank you very much in advance, this forum is a an incredible crucible of knwledge!

-Ian H.


updated by @IH: 04/10/15 12:40:54PM