Chocolate already has cocoa butter, so why do I need to add more while making chocolate candy?
When it comes to chocolate taste, there is nothing like the texture, mouth feel, and the flavor as it slowly begins to change from solid to liquid.
Which brings me to the melting point, which is essentially the same as the melting point of chocolate.
It's interesting that around half of every cocoa bean (or seed), is cocoa butter, a natural vegetable fat of the cocao bean. It has a low melting point and yet, it originates from some of the warmest tropical places on earth.
Obviously this delightful substance (sounds bad huh) begins to solidify as it gradually cools below its low melting point (around 93 °F (33.8 °C)).
It can become solid at room temperature, depending on who you ask. I know grandma & grandpa keep the room that warm :-p
"It doesn't matter what temperature the room is, it's always room temperature."
A cool thing about chocolate, is that it can still be liquid at 83 °F (28 °C), well below the melting point.
So, while tempering chocolate, it must be heated and cooled properly to offer optimal crystallization for blemish free, solid chocolate candy.
Given that every type of chocolate is unique, adding cocoa butter to melted chocolate can easily return different results.
Here's how it works.
Manufacturers need to get properly melted chocolate through the lines (pipes) in order to produce at their given stages.
Lower viscosities with resistance closer to that of water, will flow much easier than higher viscosity chocolates with resistance closer to that of molasses.
Usually, finer couverture chocolate has a very low viscosity and can be melted, tempered and used without adding anything. Hence "Fine Chocolate" so to speak.
A molding chocolate on the other hand, has a higher viscosity. This is the chocolate that has the most need for thinning.
With that said...
Once melt is complete
It really depends on what you are trying to achieve. If you need to use your chocolate in a fountain, then you'll want the chocolate to fall from the straw with a consistency of about three times the thickness of heavy cream. That's my analogy.
Sometimes you want a nice thin coat over ganache to finish that chocolate truffle. That would be about the same consistency as described above.
Keep in mind, the higher the viscosity, the harder the chocolate sets.Over in the article "About Cocoa Butter" I mentioned how you can store Raw Organic Cocoa Butter-16 ozs..
It's as easy as vacuum packing what you don't need and refrigerate the rest for and extreme amount of time well over a year.
You are only using a half-teaspoon at a time so one pound of this aromatic wonder is a really good amount to have on hand.
Feel free to add your thoughts to this article (nice of course).
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