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I'm always trying new things. Some "flop" and some are really successful. to date I only pan - an enrober is on my "wish list".

I'd like to experiment to see if I can incorporate honey into chocolate. I mean, actually combine these two really popular natural products.

Of course honey contains water which make chocolate seize. So I have not even tried that. Best I can source at the moment is 15% water content - that might be low enough for me to experiment. Any comments? Am thinking it is too high and would be sticky and would not polish.

I have tried some "dried honey" but so far it's not been wonderful as there are around 70% honey solids and 30% glucose. This makes it grainy and has a poor "mouth feel" when incororated into the chocolate itself. It IS "real honey" from bees - not from a plant.

Has anyone tried combining chocolate and honey in this way?

Thanks

Colin

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Tags: honey, panning

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Comment by Colin Green on February 4, 2013 at 5:35am

Linda, DO try milk chocolate. I find it much easier to work with and an added bonus is that it is generally more popular with buyers. Many people don't feel that white chocoate IS chocolate and many are concerned for the sugar content so I always leave that at the bottom of the list for trials.

I too love R&D but in a commercial reality I have to make a dollar. So while I like to paly I have to temper that with survival.

If you ever come to Australia do try to come to Sydney. Melbourne tends to be the "food captital" and there is quite a lot of chocolate in the Brisbane area. Sydney tends to be quite humid which is a problem for chocolate but it's a magic place to be! I'd be delighted to show you around my setup!

Kind regards

Colin :-)

Comment by Linda Crawford on January 31, 2013 at 9:36pm

Colin:

I haven't tried making milk chocolate.  I have played with making white chocolate, which I did get to kinda work.  I love dark chocolate and not a fan of milk...though I know some of our clients would love it.  I haven't researched how folks make milk chocolate..but I am sure it has been talked about on the boards. I love R&D!  I am doing more chocolate work tomorrow so I will take Clay's suggestion and see if 115F works.  I always test my temper before I mold or enrobe.  Thanks for all the information.  I had not heard of Mycryo until now so nice bit of information.  I use cocoa butter because some of our clients don't like lecithin or dairy in their chocolate and it smells really good! I love it..even though it does cost a little more.  Thanks for the fun conversation.  We would love to go to Australia, but not in the cards right now.

Comment by Colin Green on January 31, 2013 at 9:04pm

Hmmm - thanks Clay!

I have been fortunate in that I have been able to negotiate a good deal for Mycryo to the point where it does make a huge difference. But I have been interested in comments from others about shaving solid cocoa butter for tempering and I will get some in to try. It's about a third of the price of Mycryo but I don't use a lot either.

Thanks for your thoughts on the temperature. That is always a concern for me!  Planning on making them early next week - humidity is really high here in Sydney at the moment which is SUPER bad for polishing in the pan!

Comment by Clay Gordon on January 31, 2013 at 8:45pm

Colin:

Mycryo is interesting but very expensive. You can shave/grate tempered cocoa butter very finely and have much the same effect. 

Think about ganaches. What is cream but water and fat? It works because there is enough water in the cream. You don't need a lot, even butter works. If you're having trouble incorporating, melt/temper the chocolate first.

You don't need to get to 120F, 115F should be more than enough.

Comment by Colin Green on January 31, 2013 at 6:55pm

Linda, you seem to be using dark choclate for your honey. Have you tried milk choclate too?

Thanks!

Colin :-)

Comment by Colin Green on January 31, 2013 at 6:54pm

Thanks so much for these insights Clay & Linda. REALLY helpful.

Clay, I had NO idea that there was a "point of pain" that one could drive through as regards water and chocolate where the chocolate would not seize. Logic told me that if a drop of water would seize then a larger amount would be horrible! So much for logic :-)  Now I can't wait to try this out.

Your comments re the temperature are very valuable. 120F (48.9C) is surely higher than I would usually work. But I'll use that.

I have been following a really cool guy named "Chef Eddy" (www.chefeddy.com) who you might know. He tempers with cocoa butter and this seems to work in REALLY well with what you are both saying too. I have been using Callebaut's Mycryo but Eddy suggests using their block cocoa butter for reasons of cost and control. I will try this.

Clay, you are so right about the honey down here. Both Australia and New Zealand have amazing honey. Manuka (NZ) is incredible as is Yellow Box (Aussie). You have given me and idea - identify the honey type used. Makes it rather more authentic!

Linda - LOVED your web page! Such interesting information! I especially liked your blog. I have been to some of the places you mention such as South Dakota and Arizona and as an Aussie you took me back. LOVE your committment to your local produce.

I have been working on "local produce" too - for me it's Australian. One is "Bushtucker Chocolate Coffee Beans" (https://www.captaincoffee.com.au/bushtucker-chocolate-covered-coffe...) and now I'll see what I can do with Clay's idea with local honey.

Thanks Guys!

Colin :-)

Comment by Linda Crawford on January 31, 2013 at 10:25am

Good Morning,

I get my chocolate liquor from Mama-Ganache (formally Sweet Earth Chocolates). The chocolate is out of Peru,company is Ciranda, I know some of you are familiar with the company they get their chocolate from. They said they bring up the chocolate to 120.  That is the reason I started to go up to that temp and come to find out that is when it is completely melted.  Sometimes I add the honey at the start of the melting process..sometimes I warm the honey to about 100 and then add it when the chocolate is almost melted.  Same results.  I don't know the chemistry of it, but the honey I get is straight from the beekeeper..it is really thick,  I do know the honey changes moisture content at different times of the year here in Arizona and that hasn't affected my process. Crossing fingers.  I love honey and I just finished up some molded chocolates for the valentine season.  All turned out with no bloom!  I know some folks who do the same process, but heat their honey to a lower temp and warm the honey and add them together right before they temper on a stone.  I temper by seeding.  I know that Clay knows a lot more about the chemistry then I do..I am just glad it works..because their is some amazing honey to be had in the world.  We keep our honey local, it helps them and it keeps our costs down.  We only use honey to sweeten our products...check us out.  untamedconfections.com

Linda

Comment by Clay Gordon on January 31, 2013 at 9:42am

Colin:

Seizing is an issue with very small amounts of water in chocolate. Once you get above a certain amount, seizing is not an issue. Linda's suggestion to warm things up (120F - 48C) is a little warm for many chocolates but may be part of why this works - would be more difficult at 30C. The cocoa butter is to make it thinner as the water will tend to increase viscosity.

There are some fabulous honeys in your part of the world. Leatherwood from Tasmania and Manukah from New Zealand. Do this with Mac nuts .... yummmmmmmmmmmm.

Comment by Colin Green on January 27, 2013 at 7:23pm

Thanks a million for this Linda. I will indeed experiment. I didn't think it worth trying to be truthful due to the water content in the honey. Those tortises look pretty interesting :-)

Colin

Comment by Linda Crawford on January 27, 2013 at 7:02pm

No the mixture does not seize it just is thicker due to the honey and the cocoa butter allows the chocolate to flow so it is not so thick.  So, for instance if you want 72% chocolate add 28%  honey..and I add about an 1 oz of cocoa butter to 10 oz of chocolate.  It is really dependent on the honey and how thick it is.  I don't do a lot of measuring, but the picture that I put up earlier is the desert tortoises we make for our business.  No bloom..it does give the chocolate a different flavor profile depending on the honey you use.  I would experiment...

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