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apprentice

Ask the Alchemist #254

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Ask the Alchemist #254

I’m having some roasting trouble and would love to hear your opinion if you get a chance to respond. I’m using a Klarstein air fryer (1400w) to roast 1 kg of beans at a time. 

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Ask the Alchemist #214

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Ask the Alchemist #214

I have heard you should stop roasting when cocoa beans start to smell good so you don’t lose all those great flavors.  You don’t really talk about that though. How do you know when to stop a roast?

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Ask the Alchemist #213

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Ask the Alchemist #213

I have been following your roasting profile recommendations and I am loving the results.  I am having a lot of trouble though keeping the roast from going too fast.  I know we are driving off water in the first part so I turn the power down 5-10% to account for that but it never seems enough.  I’m afraid to turn it down more and mess up the roast by having it take too long.  How much should I have to turn my roaster down?

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Ask the Alchemist #206

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Ask the Alchemist #206

I notice you advocate dropping your beans into a hot roaster.  I assume this is because you want Maillard reactions and Strecker degradation products.  Is there a certain temperature that works best for these products?

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Ask the Alchemist #198

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Ask the Alchemist #198

In one of your articles you mentioned you like silk tempering more than chocolate seed tempering because of the strength of type V crystals in tempered cocoa butter. Can a chocolate tempered with chocolate seed have a chance of blooming because of the seed? I'm not sure if my last question made any sense but all I'm trying to understand is why chocolate seed crystals are not as good as silk seed crystals?   

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Ask the Alchemist #197

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Ask the Alchemist #197

Here's where I am coming from. I made a batch of 73% chocolate using the Lam Dong beans from Vietnam. The tropical fruity taste and tangy hints are excellent in this chocolate. It peaks about 4-5 seconds after placing it in your mouth and lasts about 4 seconds - it was heavenly. However, I found this fruity tang peaked on the second or third day after making the chocolate and then declined in intensity after that. I had placed the batch in a plastic container and sealed it but there was a lot of air space. So, how do you preserve this little piece of heaven? Tighter sealing? Freezing? or just accept it does not last long? I checked your answers, and did not see anything on storage of chocolate.

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Ask the Alchemist #190

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Ask the Alchemist #190

I use a Chocovision Delta to temper chocolate and have two questions:

(1) In using the seeding method (with tempered chocolate from the bag or from a bar of the same chocolate), I learned that it doesn't take very much seed for the chocolate to test as in temper--not the 30% or so that many (most?) people recommend.

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