Custom Chocolate Candy Mold
I need some advice about a custom chocolate candy mold.
I want to make many chocolate blank rounds with a shiny smooth surface and straight edges at the rims (not tapered). The dimensions I need are 1.5" diameter by .2" thick. I haven't found this exact size in the commercial molds sold, after numerous internet searches, so I'm looking to make a custom mold.
After looking at many options, like vacuum forming food grade plastics, thermoforming plastic, molding food grade silicone, and reading about some of the hazards of plastics used with food, we were wondering whether there is a good method to do this using a metal mold.
This size chocolate round seems to be commercially made all over the world for foil wrapped chocolate coins, and it appears that these are made by large automated machines, using molds of polished metal.
How would one modify the large scale automated production to a home scale for making these chocolate blank rounds with a metal mold?
What is the best type of metal that would easily release the molded chocolate?
It sounds like in the 1800's, cast iron was used. Stainless steel, tin-plated steel, or cast iron? Would I need to obtain a sheet of food grade metal and machine the disc cavities into it? It sounds like silicone would be easier to make and demould, but again, the health and safety of these materials, is questionable, although approved by the FDA.
Do you have a website or reference that can inform on the best way to make a chocolate blank rounds of those dimensions with a custom metal mold, without spending too much?
Boy, that's a tough one.
I honestly don't know the answer regarding making a custom metal mold. I'd be inclined to check at local machinist or metal worker shops and talk to the guys there and see what they would recommend.
Really though, I would probably go with the plastic molds myself if the metal ones just aren't feasible or in your price range.
I know that Candyland Crafts
will design a mold to your specification if you ask. Their chocolate molds are pretty inexpensive, so I don't think it would be too dear to have them make it up for you. If you aren't sure what they can do, give them a ring at 1-877-487-4289 and speak to them in person. Tell them you asked me and I suggested you contact them about it.
I know you are concerned about the health risks. I don't blame you, I suppose. It seems just about everything is a health risk these days.
Realistically, though, how many of these chocolates is one person going to eat? In the grand scheme of things, unless you are going to make it a regular part of your diet (wouldn't I love to) you probably don't have to be overly concerned. Something else will get you if this doesn't. :-)
The melting point of chocolate is much lower than a boiled candy, so the temperatures aren't very high. Also, the chocolate will only be in contact with the plastic for a very short amount of time. It may not pose too great a threat. Hmmm, just thinking out loud.
Well, if any other visitors have a suggestion for this custom chocolate mold dilemma, please chime in.