Merckens Chocolate Problems
I need some help with Merckens chocolate problems.
I am pretty new to the candy making business. I am using Merckens wafers for now. Since I will be doing large batches I love the fact that no tempering is necessary.
I did my first large run and came across several problems. I had to use the freezer to set the chocolate so I could have a good turnaround time. So far it was working well until I noticed I could not use the top shelf of the freezer, it was too close to the cold air.
So I used the fridge, here what I noticed is the back (exposed part) of my chocolates would set but they looked all rippled. What does this? So I could not use the fridge at all.
In the house it was warm, about 23 celcius and a bit humid. So when I used the freezer, sometimes my chocolates would come out and have condensation on them. There was nothing I could do about it. Any ideas how to prevent this?
I ended up having to remelt a lot, causing a lot of extra work. Any ideas how to prevent these issues?
Also, on a few times, when I removed the chocolate from the molds I had what seemed like snowflakes on them. Would this be a sign of humidity?
Thanks for any ideas and help. I really want to get over this and make my technique perfect so I can move on with my small business.
Congratulations on taking the step to start your own
chocolate candy business. Once you solve all of your Merckens chocolate problems and get a bit more practice, I'm sure you'll do well. :)
I don't really think that your problems are with the Merckens chocolate wafers, but rather with your methods.
First of all, be sure you are not heating the chocolate too hot when melting. That is one of the first issues that can cause the discoloration of the final chocolate.
Second, the ripples on the back of your chocolate may be from air bubbles in the chocolate. Before allowing your chocolate to set, gently tap the molds a few times on the counter to allow the air bubbles to escape.
Next, try NOT to refrigerate or freeze your chocolate if you can avoid it. If you are going to do this as a business, it may be a good idea to get an air conditioner for at least one room in your house where you can allow the chocolates to set.
If you absolutely MUST refrigerate or freeze the chocolate, cover it immediately when you remove it from the fridge/freezer to help reduce moisture build up on the surface as it returns to room temperature.
You could probably use some waxed paper with a towel on top of that. Hopefully that will keep the chocolate from developing "bloom" which is the discoloration that you described as looking like the chocolates had snowflakes on them.
Hope that helps solve all of your "Merckens chocolate problems". Keep working at it and do keep us updated on your progress. :)