Valrhona chocolate confusion
Posted: 15 May 2011 11:03 AM   [ Ignore ]
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ey all.. =) im new around here.. i ve been baking with the cake bible for a year now and i absolutely love it ! In fact so much so m starting to feel any recipe that doesnt give me as precise measurements and instructions as rose does , are doomed to failure ! LOL ! rose inspired me to get my very own scale and my thermapen is on its way.. i was making do with a no name one till now ..
My question is this.. i usually bake with Lindt dark ( around 48 or 43% ) and lindt milk chocolate around 30 %. I just discovered a way to get my hands on some valrhona. Howver im now confused on what percentage to get. i would like to buy one stock each of white milk and dark chocolate. Since they only sell in bulk of 3 kg and since it is quite expensive! i really cant afford to buy a whole different range of percentages.  i was planning on buying
1) Jivara lactee feves ( 41 % )  - milk chocolate
2) Ivory feves ( 35 % ) - white chocolate
3) extra Noir ( 53%) or EXTRA bitter ( 61%) or should i go for soemthign higher ?

Id liek to get a percentage that i could use for most of my purposes…which usually involves baking from the cke bible with some NY Times cookies thrown in for good measure.. hehe.. so you guys would be THE ppl to ask.. Any one have any ideas suggestions advice? Much thanks in advnce !!

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Posted: 15 May 2011 12:42 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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Welcome, Chocoholic!

You selections look well-chosen for their percentages.  It’s a little hard on your #3, but I think you’re safe with 61%.  I wo uldn’t go higher with TCB, as this is before dark chocolate was ‘big’ so there’s less 70%, etc., going on there.  Some recipes call for not over 53% (Sour Cream Ganache, for example), but I think, on the whole, 61% will serve most purpoes.

FWIW, I usually buy chocolate as I need it and mix brands, as I think that gives the nicest taste.  Sometimes, I’ll stock up on something if it’s on a screamer deal sale, though.  My limit is $1/oz, so if I can get it for less, I’m very happy!  I’ve been really happy with the E. Guittard you can get at Sur Lat Table—it’s $12 for 16 oz and is very good—the E. Guittard Coco Rouge cocoa powder is fabulous.  I also like Lindt (especially their white), Endangered Species (52% milk) and Ghiradelli’s 60% and 72%.  G&B 70% is also nice. So you can get some yummy chocolate on sale that makes fabulous cakes, etc., especially if you use a few brands in a recipe.  Scharffenbarger baking pieces and bars are also great and have a bit of a fruity flavor.

Have fun on your order!!!  Not much more fun than getting chocolate in the mail!

—ak

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Posted: 15 May 2011 07:01 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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That sounds like a great selection to me!  On your #3, I’d go with the 61% over the 53%...seems like alot of the recipes call for the 61-62% chocolate.  I’m assuming you do alot of baking with the white chocolate; just remember it doesn’t keep as well a the real chocolate does…but hey, if it starts to get old you can always go on a baking binge!

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Posted: 15 May 2011 07:34 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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Yes, I’d probably go with the 61% as well.  You can always reduce the chocolate quantity slightly and add a little sugar to the recipe if it calls for 53% chocolate.  I do this with Green & Black’s 85% chocolate for many recipes, as long as there is a good way to add/dissolve the sugar (such as adding it to the hot cream for ganache). 

If you’re worried about keeping qualities of any of it, Hector reports that he freezes chocolate (wrapped airtight) with no troubles.  Just keep it wrapped while bringing back to room temp and change temps slowly.

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Posted: 15 May 2011 11:02 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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I also freeze chocolate.  I have a bunch in the freezer now, in fact, that I picked up on sale.  I’ll put it in the fridge the night or day before I need it so it can “step down” from being frozen before putting it at room temp, but I’m not sure it’s necessary.

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Posted: 16 May 2011 01:31 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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hey all thanks a bunch!! i l go with the 61 then ! =) actually i think i might be able to get it in in 1 kg increments.. and that should dissapear pretty fast.. and as for the white chocolate.. loopy the only time i ve used it is in the white chocolate mousseline.. and i loved it!! though im not a big fan of white chocolate otherwise..so i ll prolly make batches of that and keep if it starts to go rancid…or i could try the roasted white chocolate mousse !! i think it needs almost 500 gms of chocolate !
thanks for the freezing tip you guys .. =)

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Posted: 16 May 2011 08:38 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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I’ve been making white chocolate whipped cream…omg..I’m not a wchoc lover, but it is stable, subtly flavoured, and a luscious texture.  I can’t recall what proprtions I usually do.. I think I usually go about 2/3 cream and 1/3 white choc. and proceed as per ganache and whip once slightly chilled.

Yes to the 61%—I can’t get much here, so I special order Lindt Piccoli in 70% and 58% and make minor adjustments to get the correct percentage.

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Posted: 16 May 2011 11:24 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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Another vote here for the 61% I think it would be the most ‘all-purpose.’

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Posted: 17 May 2011 04:01 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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I?ve been making white chocolate whipped cream?omg..I?m not a wchoc lover, but it is stable, subtly flavoured, and a luscious texture.  I can?t recall what proprtions I usually do.. I think I usually go about 2/3 cream and 1/3 white choc. and proceed as per ganache and whip once slightly chilled.

Sherrie,

This concept has been driving me crazy since I read it.  It is magnificent!  I have some leftover [pistachio butter + a teeny bit of powdered sugar mix] that I now know what to do with!!!!  I’m going to make one of those cakes that you roll up.  First, I’ll top it with the pistachio stuff (rolled super thin between waxed paper), then I’ll top if with your incredible invention, then I’ll roll it and, oh my goodness, I’ll be just sooooo pleased!

Thank you so much for thinking of this!

—ak

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Posted: 17 May 2011 04:34 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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Anne, be sure to taste test the whipped cream/white chocolate mixture to make sure the sweetness is to your liking.  I recall when I first tried it, I did 1/2 cream and 1/2 white chocolate by mass and it was way too sweet, so I just added more whipped cream until I found the sweetness level that I preferred.  Of course, it will depend on the white chocolate you are using.  Your plan sounds divine.  I’m acutally off dairy for awhile to see if it helps my baby’s congestion…so I’m absolutely envious of everyone out there who’s eating milk chocolate, cream, and butter!!

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Posted: 17 May 2011 04:50 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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Thank you, Sherrie!  I’m hoping for as ‘lightly sweet’ as possible, but still stable.  I generally use Ghiradelli (I thought it was Lindt, but I’m wrong).  From your recollection, how little white chocolate do you think I can get away with and still have the final result be stable overnight in the fridge and then more or less all day at room temp? 

Good luck with your baby!  My nephew, as a child, couldn’t have dairy at all.  This ticked my sister off, so she started adding it a drop at a time, and, eventually, he got over it, sucked the diary down like a little calf and grew like Paul Bunyan.  He stuttered (which he also got over), but he had no congestion, so if your baby is allergic to dairy, it might not be for a lifetime!!!

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Posted: 18 May 2011 03:46 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]
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Hi Anne, oh gosh, I wish I could remember.  I was really only playing with it to use up some white chocolate (in fact, I think I used Valrhona too—picked some up on vacation!).  If you want more stability you could check out Hector’s post re: super super stablized whipped cream (I’ve tried finding the post..no luck??anyone??) and do a combo of that and white chocolate.  I don’t think it takes much white choc. to stabilize but I could be wrong.  As far as stability duration, I think it would be much like other stabilized whipped cream…make it, apply it, and chill…remove from fridge to get to appropriate serving temp.  But it will get spongy if you make it and leave in a bowl overnight and then try to apply it.

I really should take notes for next time…

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Posted: 18 May 2011 03:56 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]
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Thanks, Sherrie!

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