The Chocolate Life

Discover Chocolate and Live La Vida Cocoa!

We usually don't stabilize anything (we encourage refridgeration and timely consumption) and some of the retail stores we are looking at have asked us to do just that.  

Our current recipe includes egg yolk & butter as the two main spoilage components.  I have been told that getting powdered egg yolks will lower the water count and make it much more likely for shelf stability, does the dairy in butter have any considerations?

Does anyone have any resources on shelf stabilizing chocolate, caramel, or other styles of sauces like these?

Tags: preservation, sauce, shelf-stable

Views: 1194

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

I am not a professional food scientist by any means, but powdered egg yolks may reduce your water activity as you noted. Dairy does have consideration. If you are using a butter ganache or butter in your sauce, there is a natural preservative made from oil of rosemary that delays rancidity and is FDA accepted. It is used in such small proportions that it will not introduce any "off" flavors into your chocolate sauces/ganaches. There is also a new product that is organic and citrus-based from a Canadian place called Biosecur, used in proportions of less than 1% of formula to prevent bacterial/fungal growth.

I would highly suggest you purchase a lab Aw meter if you're really concerned about water activity in your formula. They can be had for under $2000.

If you're worried about stability as in broken sauce or ganache and the emulsion breaking, you might try xantham gum.

Again, though, I qualify this-I am not a food scientist and you'd probably be best off consulting with one for your issue.

Best of luck!

I've tried to contact the Biosecur people and they do not return my emails. Have you seen them in a store? I'll keep trying.

For the ROE do you have a product by name you'd recommend? I find a lot for skin-care products and while I'm sure it's food-grade I'd like to find something specific. Most sites definitely talk about how it can impart it's flavor into your products so to steer very carefully.
Thanks Jeff for the response, I'll do some research in the directions you've mentioned and report back any findings. Glad to hear there are some natural solutions out there for a variety of these thoughts.
Try contacting Yves Methot He´s been very responsive to my emails.

I´m not clear on what you´re referring to when you say ¨ROE¨. Do you mean the Rosemary extract? You can get this from Lorann Oils, they call it simply "Natural Antioxidant."

Thanks you x2. I've written Yves and told him also that their info@ mailbox must lead to a dead-end. ;) Appreciate the information and quick response. Maybe today I can make progress on something hah!
Hi Andy, I'm sorry that you couldn't reach us by email. Sometime it goes to the spam folder and we might miss your mail this way. Since our last Press Release in November 09 we received so many requests from all over the world. It's great because we offer free sample to who wants to try our BIOSECUR organic preservative product. So feel free to contact us if you need any help in this matter.
I'd avoid additives unless you must take that route. What are you trying to do, exactly? Shelf stable is a vague term that can mean anything from a few days to many years. Will the product be sealed (in what?) or open to the air? What are your concerns separation, rancidity/oxidation, microbial activity?

Egg yolks and butter spoil no differently than anything else, you need to consider the product as a whole.

Powdered egg yolks will lower the water count, but if you don't add water back elsewhere you'll alter the texture of the sauce. You are not worried about total water, but free water.
I'd really rather not know this route, but it is good to know there are natural additives that can help slow rancidities & microbes.

We have a fudge sauce which a vendor wants to have shelf-stabilized so it does not need refrigeration and can sit on their shelves. Our sauce likes refrigeration and when we do not do so it forms mould specs on the surface that I'm sure would become a forrest if we let it.

We always start and end a conversation with refrigeration, enjoy in a timely manner, and hell--just buy more, don't conserve! hehe.

In an effort to make inroads into certain retail positions we sometimes have no opportunity for refrigeration but the clients still want us in. I'm just trying to find ways of adding longevity to our products (mainly our ganache which is butter/cream & fudge sauce egg/butter) before like you said butter goes rancid (which is around 2 weeks now at room temp), or mould sets in (which also seems to hover in the 2-3 week range).

Again being in the startup phase/curve it's hard for us to justify large expenditures in testing labs or equipment of our own. Most of the time we do direct-to-consumer but I'm marketing us so hard we're attracting a lot of diversified interests which do help us pad the bottom line. The more I can satisfy them the easier it is on our growth but of course I won't compromise our mantra and products if it's created in a science lab. ;-)
Ok, so you'll be jarring this? Depending on where you are that can be a whole big legal thing. Many districts/states whatever require microbial testing, pH testing, aw testing, you name it. Figure out that part first, also make sure you have correct insurance and a correct kitchen certification.

Obviously everything being clean is important. You're going to need to pasteurize or sterilize the contents and sterilize the containers. This alone can give you quite a boost in shelf-life. However you may still be required the get the pH and aw down.

pH is tricky as obviously acids will flavor the sauce... but aw is easy. First things first remember that monosaccharides are about twice as good at tying up water as regular sugar (about twice as many molecules in the same mass). Some sugar alcohols work well to tie up water, but you want to keep the concentrations low to avoid the bitterness and digestive issues they may impart (~1% for sorbitol is typically good).

Oxidation is actually fairly easy to deal with, first you want to limit the oxygen. Removing bubbles from the sauce is a good idea. Also remember that light speeds oxidation, so either big labels or perhaps tinted glass might be a good option. Then there is nitrogen... which can be a life saver or a botulism problem (damned anaerobic critters). Flushing the container with nitrogen will pretty much halt oxidation, but you'll have dead customers if botulinis spores survive processing. Best to consult a vendor about what exactly you want to do.

All in all, some boiling water, maybe dumping some sugar for glucose/dextrose/fructose/sorbitol, and a nitrogen flusher/vibrating table+tinted jars could realistically get your shelf life up to around a year.
What a pain. I mean we use certified kitchens (health dept, not ag dept) and we're insured seven ways to sunday but who knew trying to get this further out there would be such a twisted issue. In the states eyes I always considered us a low water activity food, that's what they classify chocolate sauce as--or did. Their new site is confusing me and I should probably talk to the extension office.

We currently sterilize the jars through the oven method then we transfer once cooled into a fridge. Which was in line with UGA on Choc. sauce so for general use and early consumption I think we currently meet most criteria, it's the idea of taking this into a wider audience--and outside of cold storage into places that are going to have to go the distance that is deeply worrisome.

I think from here we're going to adapt some suggestions ie: switch out some sugar, maybe use some powdered egg instead of total replacement (we're not having good luck with any large % shift), do some testing with Rosemary Oil in very light light use--if we can at all stay in our current textures/tastes/etc, we'll ship it to the state college for testing/evaluating.

This has all been talk over chocolate sauces, but what of caramel sauces that use a lot more sugar, then butter & heavy cream. I can't think fructose or dextrose will behave right in a caramel making process. Are there any thoughts on it's safety/stability? I haven't been able to google up much info at all concerning it.
Yeah... the thing is, it is possible and frequently preferable to do things one way with food, but often the law requires another different way.

Caramel typically is easier as it can have a lower pH, the sugar content is higher (mixing sugars in caramel works, but there is less point as you are inverting the sugar while you cook it and unless you're after a very specific thing (savory, fruity, extra sweet, no crystals, etc) it is best to stay with sugar and perhaps a doctor.

How hot are your sauces when the go into the jars? The cleaner the insides of that jar is, the better the shelf-life. If you can take straight from a 120C oven and add your sauce straight away, just off the boil and seal it up... you'll end up with a near spotless inside. Just for good measure after the fact you could UV-C the surface incase anything settled from the air after pouring.

Personally I'd avoid ROE and powdered yolks unless you have a really specific reason for using them, like the need to add a different liquid.


Member Marketplace

Promote TheChocolateLife

Bookmark and Share

Follow Clay on:
Twitter :: @DiscoverChoc
F'Book :: TheChocolateLife
F'Book Group :: LaVidaCocoa :: @DiscoverChoc

© 2014   Created by Clay Gordon.

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service