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I am told that tempering is not required when panning. Having been told that I MUST temper by judges at a competition then being assured that I must not by members on this website I got rather confused. But I'm now quite sure that it's not required.

However, DOES the vibration involved in panning temper the chocolate? I thought so but am assured by someone that I am sure knows what he's talking about that it does not.

So how does panned chocolate taste so good and "snap" when it's not tempered? What are the physics and chemistry involved. Does anyone know?

If I could find out it may help to avoid occassional "screwups" as, for example, sometimes I can't polish panned product no matter what I do. It's rare - but it happens, especially with white "chocolate" ("" in deference to those who say it's not "chocolate") :-)

The more I know about this substance the more I puzzle and know that there is MUCH more to know!

Thanks Guyz 'n Girlz!

Colin in Sunny Sydney

Tags: panning, tempering

Views: 315

Replies to This Discussion

Hi Collin,

Tempering or precrystallization need to be in the 3 parameters, temperature, time and movement.  As you spinning the product and the cool air that you adjust during the process, will temper your chocolate. How ever they do not have the shine, because of the friction over each other.

As per your problem of the white chocolate,  It is a problem of temperature and humidity that you could not polish them.  Your room Humidity should not be over 60% and ensure that temperature should be a round the 20-22oC mark.  Too low or too hot of temperature the glaze will not set. At the end the ERH is very important to achieve a good product. As you are in Sydney, Much have a quite high humidity in the summer.  I guess thats when you have the most challenge for the white.

Cheers, Derrick

Derrick, thanks so much for your response. I do appreciate that.

For milk, dark or white chocolate I melt and hold it at around 45C in the melter and then pour it carefully into the pan as it rotates to cover the centers.

I am greatly puzzled by the precrystallization process. I can temper quite easily if I want to by seeding (adding tempered callets to carefully controlled per-heated chocolate and dropping to the appropriate temperature). But I don't do that when panning and I am strongly advised that I should not temper when panning.

So, if the chocolate in the pan tempers, within the paramaters of temperature, time and movement I am guessing that "movement" would do the tempering? If at all? Do you agree that it DOES become tempered? That is what greatly puzzles me! 

The lack of shine is no problem as I polish the product with Capol 5021A and then add a layer of Shellac. Although if I pan it long enough it can indeed become very shiny even without the polish - but it takes a very long time and I can't always attain that anyway.

As regards the white chocolate problem. Thanks for that. I shall focus MUCH harder on this. I can quite easily drop room temperature down as low as 14C and maybe I have indeed been over-zealous and gone too far with this. Humidity is harder and can go as low as 45% or to 60% quickly and it is hard to control. I have a dehumidifyer but it seems to be tempermental and hard to control.

I HAVE wondered if the white chocolate actually has too much moisture before I even begin melting it. But it's always sealed and good quality product. I shall keep trying!

Again - thank you so very much for your response. There seems to be very little knowledge of panning "out there" and it is exceedingly hard to get information to improve my self-learned skills.

Colin :-)

Hi Colin,

That is correct, you do not need to temper your chocolate for Panning.  The rotation of you Pan or your Belt(if you use Belt Panning) will crystallize the chocolate for you. With a small batch of 3-4kg, as my experience, using the temper chocolate it will be faster to pan.  However in a high volume 10kg and more the best is to use un-crystallize chocolate, to achieve an even size for the end result. If you use crystallize chocolate you may have an uneven size of products, as the chocolate will crystallize too fast. 

Also if you do want to shine them without any shellac, you need to master your time, temperature and speed, that how Callebaut does it with the Callet Sensation, however products will be sensitive with humidity surrounding, the Callet will losing it shine as they expose to fluctuation and humidity of the room. With the shellac, products will be stable and keep it shine, even tho the room is high with humidity or get expose to a fluctuation of temperature.

The moisture is all depend on the panning products, temperature and the ERH of your room. For best result, you need to let the product rest for a minimum 6-24 hours depending on the thickness of your coating on the product, thicker the chocolate longer it need to rest, do not try to rush to polish them.  As the chocolate set completely over time, it will become harder and it will be more easier to polish.  Therefore you need to schedule to pan all products in one day and on the second day, adjust your temperature and humidity for seal and polish.

Another thing, when you use a sealing such as Capol 5021A,  you need to follow the instruction of dosage from the manufacture,  sometime if you add too much is may result to not get the products to seal properly, then will affect the polish stage. Same at the shellac too much you could not polish it properly too.

Panning is another complete field and profession than chocolatier, majority of chocolatier may know how to pan and finish with Cocoa powder or icing sugar.  However they may not know how to seal and polish.

Cheers and good luck Colin.


Thanks so much Derrick. This is really helpful and explains some things that I have been unsure of, most particularly the crystalisation.

I do indeed schedule to make one day and polish the next. Maybe though I need to leave the product to set even longer than overnight. It may be the problem with the white chocolate.

Most of my batches are around 45Kg although the strawberries might only be 30Kg and sometimes with chocolate coated coffee beans I may go as high as 60Kg.

My pan is a rotating pan - not a belt. I actually have two - one is 15Kg and the other max 70Kg.  Most of my panning is done in the 70Kg and polishiing in the 15Kg.

Should I line the polishing pan with gark chocolate? Pressently I have installed "ribs" by taping some garden hose inside the small pan. But I find it hard to get a really nice polish and I think that is because of the hard surface of the stainless steel pan.

I tried finishing with cocoa powder but Australians don't like the "mouth feel" so now use Capol 5021A and shellac to seal.

Thanks again Derrick!

Colin :-)

Hi Colin,

No you do not need to line your pan with any chocolate when you seal and polish the products, install rib for polishing is good how ever make sure that the ribs is not too large in width.  For a 15kg pan should be around 3-5mm, 5 ribs is ample. instead of using garden hose,  You can use the water pipe for in house refrigeration or water softener pipe or even aquarium pump,  what is the brand of your panning machine, may I ask?

As the polish stage, you need to look at your speed. Because for panning, the pan has no ribs, for polishing the pan need ribs. The hard surface of the pan doesn't affect the polishing at all. Panning or polishing, the quantity in the pan will be relate with the speed, temperature(air), humidity,time and the thickness of one to another products, may change it lightly the panning time and also determine your panning speed.  You need to make several test as different temperature and speed. Record it all the parameters.  You will come up with your chart for dark, milk and white chocolate.

Just remember, from one continent to another, from one coast to another or you are in the mountain or sea level.  They will have a different in speed, temperature, humidity and time.



Derrick, you say "if you do want to shine them without any shellac, you need to master your time, temperature and speed, that how Callebaut does it with the Callet Sensation".

I assume that you mean the pan rotation speed?  On a 70Kg pan do you have any idea as to what that speed might be?  I also assume that the load must be factored in too?

I assumed that "time" was pretty much "the longer the better" to attain a nice shine without polish. Correct?



 Hi again,

Yes, you can shine the product without shellac, is all relate to time, temperature, humidity and speed. As I mention in the previous response, you have to make your test and record the parameter.

Remember one thing,  to shine the product, pan temperature need to be 18-20oC and the speed and time will give the result. Too fast may create heat, too slow not enough heat....... and also need to take in the humidity and quantity in the consideration.

Callebaut has a perfect environ and temperature/humidity control all year long. To achieve what they done, is possible but with a lot of precaution and challenge to make and keep a perfect environment for a small production. And as I mentioned before, the products without shellac is very sensitive to humidity and temperature fluctuation.  It can loose it shine once the bag is open and not consume at a certain period of time.  ERH.

Therefore it is your decision to make. Without shellac, its mean longer in the pan, your cost will be higher(hydro, less production and everyday challenge)!  I suggest that you try the process with the record, then you can come up with your cost and see if it is worth to do it certain way.


Thanks so much for this Derrick. Very helpful indeed.  I shall reconsider the size of the tube for the ribs. I actually only have one hose that I have taped to the pan so it effectively acts as two ribs (right across the pan). So I shall consider putting five into the pan now.

The brand of my pans is "no-names" from China. A pan from Italy like the "big names" (eg Selmi) is expensive and support (at least from Selmi) is really REALLY poor. I can buy about five pans from China for the same price and their support has to date been very good. So I have two pans for less money than one "big-name" which gives me extra production and instant backup. 

You mention the term "ERH" often. I assume that you mean "Effective Relative Humidity"?

Now - I need to start making that chart you mention!

Thanks again for your really valued help.

Colin :-)

Hi Colin,

I am dealing rarely with Selmi, Therefore no comment.

However buying from China it is not better either. One factor that you need to take in consideration.  China is trying to get into the international confectionary market with panning machine, refiner conche, tempering, enrobing line etc...  they get in with a very cheap price. But the quality of stainless or steel etc... are way inferior to the quality using in Europe,  Trust me, I am Asian too, LOL.

And they do not have the understanding of all chocolate products,  They just try to copy what ever on the market and make it cheaper. After sale service is great for certain period, technical sale is very limited to none.

Buying 40kg or more of Panning machine.  You need to consider several element

1-Panning or shinning pan or belt  ( my prefer is Belt panning)

2- Air flow( cold air with blower to the pan) You can adjust

3-Variable speed. Starting of every product need to be at different speed

4-Dripping or spraying chocolate in feed (spraying is better in my POV)

advantage with Belt:

you can pan or shine with the same piece of equipment.

Belt pan is about the length therefore you have a wide opening, easy to load and unload products.

Less damage to products while panning, especially, some delicate products, Such as dehydrated Blueberry or jelly.

More even for chocolate distribution while panning as it has a much larger surface.

ERH=Equilibrium of relative humidity

Balance of the humidity in the room temperature, product and air.



Hi Derrick,

Great thoughts here!

Let me explain why I purchased from China :-)

When I decided to buy a pan, the European pans available here started at around $20,000 - $40,000 which was tough to pay for. Especially as I was not entirely sure what I was to do. I was able to purchase one new from China for $1,000 (15Kg). That was not a hard decision as if it proved to be "cheap and nasty" I could afford to abandon it.

However, when I ordered it, it came quickly and the Chinese were helpful at all stages. I was however concious that a European pan would likely be better in terms of steel quality, design and reliability so kept them in my mind for the next stage.

When I tried to purchase an addon piece of gear from the European company I mentioned earlier, despite MANY MANY emails especially to the Italian factory I eventually simply gave it away as being too hard. I then knew that if I ever needed service, if they would not respond to a sales call, they would surely not respond to a service request. This in strong comparison to the Chinese who were extremely attentive even after purchase.

So when I needed a second much larger pan (70kg) I also purchased from China. The 70Kg pan from there was around $2800. Shipping was an additional $200. Importation fees were the killer - about the same as everything else combined! But still far less costly than buying the "brand from Europe".

To date I have not had a single breakdown and I have REALLY worked those pans! Both are variable speed and the large one has air. I control my room humidity and temperature with other equipment. If I needed service I can get that locally from any electrician or mechanical person. The "big brand" technician was supposed to do something for me as I was indeed thinking along the lines of their equipment. But he proved to be totally unreliable and I'd certainly NOT want to have rely on that! 

So, bottom line is that the Chinese gear works, they give me excellent backup, great pricing and I'm not reliant on any particular service company or person. The stainless steel is seemingly OK although quality of finish is not as good as I would expect from Europe. But it works...

In the worst situation, if I needed a new replacement pan I'd order one from China and it would reliably be here in around two weeks for quite a small price.

HOWEVER! If I needed an enrober I would almost certainly buy European or New Zealand. As I see it, (and I may be wrong) enrobers are delicate machines and need great technology. And when I was trying to see if I could buy one the FBM people were extraordinary in the way they tried to assist and I have total confidence in them. (Clay was really helpful too in pointing me in appropriate directions and giving great advice.)

Sadly an enrober is out of my price range right now. There is a nice bit of kit out of New Zealand too but also costly (well over $100,000).

I would like to work on the dripping or spraying issue. At this point I'd favor Savage from the USA. Seems like good gear and the guy is really helpful. Just unsure as to how to go (drip or spray) at present so I continue to hand pour. I did buy a peristaltic pump to deliver the chocolate but it's as far as I have got. That was a British unit. And yes, very costly! I moved too quickly on that!

The belt seems excellent. However, as you say, the pan can be used for both building and polishing and as such my two pans act as back-ups to each other if I ever have a breakdown. And I do indeed do some very delicate work with freeze dried strawberries and blueberries. Pomegranates coming up soon I hope!

Thanks for the link to your web site. You do some very interesting work!

I'm printing your messages out for my manual. Your advice and input is exceptionally valuable. Thanks a million!

Colin :-)

No Problem Collin,

I do know that enrober under $100, 000 does exist.  However I am not here to do a sale pitch and I don't think that is appropriate.

If you want to know more about enrober. please contact my website and we can talk privately about it.



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