Chocolate Curls
Posted: 12 February 2009 09:05 PM   [ Ignore ]
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Quick Question. I see that you can make curls using the potato peeler and a block of chocolate. However, I dont know where in the life of me to find a thick block of chocolate. For all I know, we only have like thin bars…which will make thin curls…any ideas??

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Posted: 13 February 2009 12:08 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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I’ve made chocolate curls from thin bars. Each curl comes out as a narrow band of ribbon, as opposed to wider. The important thing is the temperature of the chocolate. Too cold, and it will shave off in brittle flakes. Too warm, and it will start to melt.

You could try tempering two of the thinner chocolate bars together (i.e., partially melt one side of each with a hair dryer, press them together, so that you end up with a thicker bar.) I don’t know if you will be able to see the “seam” once you make the curls, but the good thing is, the mistakes will still be delicious.

You can buy thick blocks of chocolate online at Sweet Celebrations, and Surfas, Inc. (Surface is a restaurant supply store here in Los Angeles—a cook’s paradise!)

Also, Scharffenberger bars are thicker than, say, a Lindt bar. You should be able to find Scharffenberger in well-stocked supermarkets.

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Posted: 13 February 2009 06:23 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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some upscale supermarkets sell blocks of chocolate - the Whole Foods near me sells it in the cheese department.  It’s the 11-pound blocks of callebaut that have been broken up so some chunks are large while other are smaller; they are wrapped in saran wrap and priced individually.

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Posted: 13 February 2009 10:23 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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I haven’t been to Trader Joe’s for a while, but I’ve purchased the big chucks of chocolate there too.  They used to sell the 11-pound bars, but I’ve only seen the broken chunks (some quite large) the last few times I shopped there.

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Posted: 13 February 2009 10:28 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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ok and i was reading in TCB that its ok to put the choc in a microwave for 3 second bursts, but then i saw a video on the internet where a guy said DONT put your choco in the microwave? Is it ok to do that??  If i lived in a nice warm place i could probably warm it up good, but of course..its cold here.

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Posted: 13 February 2009 10:34 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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Many people put their chocolate in the microwave, but since all models are different in terms of power, you really have to be careful not to scorch or burn it.  Quick zap, stir, quick zap, stir….  Remember that chocolate melts just above body temp. 
I prefer to melt using a make shift double boiler - I put a glass or metal bowl over a pot of barely simmering water (not letting the water touch the bottom of the bowl).  It works well for me.

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Posted: 13 February 2009 01:41 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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well im not talking to melt it, im talking to soften it, to make the curls!

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Posted: 13 February 2009 01:46 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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Oops… didn’t read the thread before answering… sorry about that.  I just warm the chocolate with heat of my hand - just long enough for it to soften slightly.  You can also spread melted chocolate into a thin layer on the back of a cookie sheet, or on a smooth counter top, let it set up, and then use a bench scraper to get bigger curls.

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Posted: 13 February 2009 01:59 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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yeah dont have a bench scraper. Im just gonna try using the peeler. Hope it works!!!

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Posted: 13 February 2009 02:10 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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You could also make your own block of chocolate if you are up for melting and tempering the thin blocks you have. Patrincia, my trader joe’s stopped selling those altogether.  They have not been in the store for probably a year—don’t know why they stopped—in fact, the entire chocolate section is now just the bars around the cash register—they got rid of the one in the aisles.

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Posted: 13 February 2009 05:04 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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Matthew - 13 February 2009 06:10 PM

You could also make your own block of chocolate if you are up for melting and tempering the thin blocks you have. Patrincia, my trader joe’s stopped selling those altogether.  They have not been in the store for probably a year—don’t know why they stopped—in fact, the entire chocolate section is now just the bars around the cash register—they got rid of the one in the aisles.

Oh no… I’ll plan a trip to mine soon… hope I’m not disappointed.

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Posted: 13 February 2009 07:25 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]
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you don’t need a bench scraper, you can also use a paint scraper or putty knife, if you want fat curls this is the way to go.

regular chocolate melts quickly and can be difficult to learn how to use. for a first try i would use confectionary chocolate, also called chocolate coating or candy coating. you get the absolute best curls from those!

jen

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Posted: 14 February 2009 01:04 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]
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Yes, the temp of the bar/block is very important, it needs to be around 78, I think.  The microwave can work in short bursts, but what tends to happen is that the center of the block get too warm and liquidy and then can’t be used without re-tempering.

My local grocery sells the Callebaut in blocks over the in bulk food or cheese section.

Good Luck!

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Posted: 14 February 2009 01:08 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]
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Julie - 14 February 2009 05:04 PM

YMy local grocery sells the Callebaut in blocks over the in bulk food or cheese section. Good Luck!

Which grocery chain is that?

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Posted: 14 February 2009 01:18 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 14 ]
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Hi Patrincia, we must be blogging at the same time!  Stop n shop is my local chain, up here in Western Massachusetts.

Best,
Julie

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Posted: 14 February 2009 03:07 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 15 ]
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Julie - 14 February 2009 05:18 PM

Hi Patrincia, we must be blogging at the same time!  Stop n shop is my local chain, up here in Western Massachusetts.

Best,
Julie

A big wave to you Julie!
Thanks for the info.

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