The Chocolate Life

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This is my first post and I'm just starting out working with chocolate. I've been experimenting with honey (liquid, creamed and raw). I've gotten some decent results but the texture of my chocolate always seems to start getting gritty and crumbly after about a week. I'm trying to figure out if this is due to not being tempered properly, because of the moisture content of the honey or possibly both and some other reasons?

Long story short, I have a tempering machine on the way. I've been using blocks of cocoa liquor, cocoa butter and a small amount of honey to make my chocolate. I'm considering buying a melanger (looking at the cocoatown ECCG-12sl). Does anyone know if it would be worthwhile to use one to get the honey and cocoa liquor butter more evenly mixed before going into the tempering machine? I was also thinking that the heat generated from the melanger might evaporate some of the moisture out of the honey/cocoa mix? I was also considering trying to find dehydrated honey to mix in, would a melanger still be useful in the process regardless?

Tags: honey, melanger, tempering

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Russ:

Colin Green in Australia started a related discussion on honey and chocolate a couple of months ago - you might want to check  to see if some of the answers you seek are there.

Thanks for pointing me to that Clay! Is there a benefit to running everything through a melanger before dropping it into a tempering machine?

Russ:

Without actually trying it, I can't see why there would be any particular benefit to using a grinder like the ECGC12SL as a mixer, which is what you're really looking to do - mix all the ingredients together and create a more stable suspension.

How long were you thinking you'd need to leave everything in to mix? I am thinking 10-15 minutes tops, which would mean that there would be little chance for any evaporation to happen - which you do want, actually, water in the suspension increases viscosity significantly.

Most dried honey powder is a little honey and a lot of filler - usually maltodextrin. Good luck in finding something that is pure honey. I and others have been looking and we haven't found anything yet.

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