Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Rolling, Tempering, Dipping

You can find some alternatives to the tempering process in my initial truffle post. Unless you're willing to fork out big bucks on a tempering machine I would suggest that you use them if you make these yourself. Otherwise you're doomed to a lifetime of sucking up to assholes like me who obtain the technology. The machine I'm using here is a small (1.5 lb batch) version of the 18lb monster Hilliard I use when the shop is open.
The first thing to do is to take an eight by twelve baking pan and line the top half of it with plastic wrap. You'll want plenty of overlap on the sides.

Take the ganache that has been setting overnight out of the refrigerator and unwrap it. Snatch out enough ganache to make a decent size ball. Your goal is to roll six fairly even sized balls that will fit evenly across eight inches of pan. This will produce truffles that average about eight to a pound.

You will need to work quickly. Fine chocolate is a liquid at 8° below body temperature. The cream and the butter don't help either. When I have the right amount of ganache in my hand I form it with my fingers into a cubish, rounding thing. Then I try to bring it into a ball with my closed palms.

Have I mentioned that you need to work fast? As soon as something in my palms resembles a sphere I open my hands, forming a "V" shape to finish off

A perfect ball of ganache which goes immediately into the pan with the others. Blogger is being a bitch about the photos. Althogh it's probably my fault. When I upload a photo it always is placed at the top of the post. You'd think it wasn't that hard to put it where the cursor is but I guess that only shows how little I fucking know. I'll soldier on with text for a while.

I roll in lots of twelve. Like most of my customers, I tend to think in dozens. The other thing is that as you roll there is a slick film of melted ganche that forms on your hands. If this gets too thick you'll end up melting the ganache faster than you can form it. Part of this is the way I make the ganache. I don't boil the cream or do things that will keep it from liquifying quickly. This makes it harder to work with, but I think it's worth it. After I drop in twelve balls I wash my hands, using warm water, then finish off with cold water (because these things hate heat) and dry with at least two towels to ensure that my hands are scupulously dry before I wrap up the dozen balls and put them into the fridge. The wrapped dozens need to be in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours before you attempt dipping them.

Since the problem is most likely something I did inadvertently I'm going to close this post and immediately start the post about the dipping. That way we will have pictures.



Blogger andi said...


is it just me, or is this post unspeakably erotic?

and pictures...

good god i have to go clean myself up.

10:50 AM  
Blogger The Minstrel Boy said...

chocolate is totally erotic. it's better than erotic. no wonder to the aztecs and the maya it was both a currency and a sacrament.

1:04 PM  
Anonymous shades of blue said...

Alright now tell the truth...
Do you lick your fingers when you're finished?

1:07 PM  
Blogger Pogo said...

mb, had to go OOT for 2 days. did I miss it, or have you not posted the shipping costs? Lemme know.

7:31 AM  
Blogger The Minstrel Boy said...

Pogo, i need you to email me with an address that doesn't use a P.O. box, the overnight shipping guys won't accept it. if it's your office a street address and office suite number will do.

9:44 AM  
Blogger The Minstrel Boy said...

yes shades, i have been known to lick my fingers, but only right before i wash them. i have also been known to take a chocolaty finger and smear some onto various body parts of a woman standing near me in the kitchen and then lick that. . .yes, it can get very fun in there. truffle making is sensual and erotic. that's one of the things i love about it.

9:47 AM  
Blogger litbrit said...

Woo HOOO! Mine are here! I love when the delivery is for me, for a change. I will enjoy and appreciate these treats that much more, knowing all the work and love that went into them. (I knew it was a process, but wow, I'm getting exhausted just looking at these pictures.)

*hides box in room to open quietly much later*

2:41 PM  
Anonymous shades of blue said...

I will never be able to look at a truffle again without giggling.

4:08 PM  
Blogger konagod said...

What makes this ULTRA special is seeing the hands which shaped them, and the careful loving preparation.

Divine. Nothing short of Divine.

6:49 PM  

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