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Hi Everyone!

Here I am struggling with a new issue! Lately my so-called tempered chocolate is coming out incredibly shiny but soft and pliable. What on earth is going on? I've never seen such shine on chocolate but if you pick up the bar of chocolate with your hands it just bends like putty. Strangely, the same batch of chocolate came out beautiful with a nice shine and snap in the bit size molds it was poured in. Two completely different "end results" using the same chocolate and poured at the same time. Is there a default setting for tempering chocolate? I was wondering if someone could give me a good starting point for tempering Guittard couverture milk, dark, and white? Thanks for any help in advance,

Lisa

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I just had the same darn problem. i temper by hand.

The only two things that were different for me was the heat to 120 degrees( too high) and then it was super hot in our kitchen, almost 78 degrees. But some of my molds were beautiful and the others looked like "putty" as you put it.

It would be nice to hear from others what the cause may be and how to not duplicate this issue.

Thanks,

Melody
Melody, I think Brad has solved the mystery in his response to my question.
Lisa
Your chocolate wasn't in temper when it went into the molds.

The temperature ranges for proper crystalization of the cocoa butter are non-negotiable / unflexible. 120 degrees is irrelevant. Any temperature between 115 and 140 is fine. We use 120 in our shop to be safe.

What most likely happened is your chocolate got too warm when you brought the temperature back to the working temperature from the cool down state.

It's important to remember that when you hit that magic 78/79 degrees and then begin reheating the chocolate to make it more fluid, only a small percentage of the correct crystals have formed. It takes time for the crystals to keep seeding themselves so that the majority of your chocolate is properly crystalized. If you hurry the reheating process, or go too high right off the bat (higher than 90 degrees), you risk destroying the few proper crystals that are in place.

Give your chocolate a few minutes to seed itself at 90 degrees, STIR STIR STIR, pour it, and then because your kitchen is warm, throw it in the fridge to cool it quickly. Just remember to remove it from the fridge relatively soon, or run the risk of condensation / sugar bloom.

Hope this helps.

Brad.
Brad, I think you nailed it for me. My chocolate was indeed to thick to pour in my opinion so I brought the temperature back up to 94 to pour. I thought I read here how someone always pours at 94 and gets good results so I tried it. Nice shine but putty as previously stated. I will take my time and only bring the chocolate back up to 90 degrees. I've had such good luck previously but lately I am playing with the temps too much. Back to basics! Thank you,
Lisa
As an intentional experiment, I melted some chocolate and then poured it onto a teflon release sheet without any attempt to temper.

The chocolate picked up the shine of the release sheet, and had no visible bloom. It had a very soft, putty like consistency, and no snap. I guess you got your chocolate into a state where it set up cleanly, but into the wrong crystal form.

I found that I rather liked the creaminess of the untempered chocolate, however it bloomed after only a couple of days. I suspect that 'perfectly untempered' chocolate could be attractive for some markets, but that it would have a very short shelf life.

-Jon
Wow~! Brad, thank you so much for enlightening me on this issue. I had figured it was at the reheating stage where the problem was but couldn't quite put my finger on it. Duh! I forgot some basics and you saved me a lot of time. Many thanks!
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