* moulds for chocolates (pralines)
* melting pan or tempering machine
* small palette knife
* triangular palette knife
Temper the melted chocolate.
Ensure that the moulds are at room temperature and warm them lightly with a hot air blower (the ideal temperature of the moulds is 26° to 27°C ). Avoid the moulds becoming warmer than the tempered chocolate.
For the filling:
* Ganache, praline or filling of choice
* piping bag with plain tip
* small palette knife
* Plastic gloves or a good quality brush with medium hard bristles
Pour the mould full of tempered chocolate. Hold the mould at an angle and, with the small palette knife, scrape the excess chocolate from the top and sides of the mould.
Tap the mould firmly against the marble or worktable to remove any possible air bubbles from the chocolate.
Pour the excess chocolate out of the mould ensuring that all the corners or sides of the mould are evenly covered with chocolate.
Remove the remains of the chocolate from the top and sides of the mould with the small palette knife.
Let the chocolate set for about 5 minutes: put the mould on a paper sheet (open side down) and allow the excess chocolate to drip onto the paper (until the dripping chocolate begins to set).
Scrape the last remains of chocolate off the mould and leave the mould to harden for a few minutes in the refrigerator (10°C). The moulds are then ready to fill with a ganache or other filling.
Fill the moulds with a ganache, a praline or any filling you wish. You should use the piping bag with a plain tip (or no tip at all). Fill to within 2mm of the edge. Otherwise it becomes impossible to close the mould. Make sure the filling is not too warm (max 25°C). Once filled, let the filling set.
Close the pralines: warm the top of the mould very briefly with the hot air gun. Then apply a small quantity of tempered chocolate with the small palette knife and spread it over the top. Do this a little at a time rather than putting too much chocolate into the mould at once.
Smooth over the top and scrape away any excess chocolate from the top and edges. Now place for ±30 minutes in the refrigerator (10°C).
First tap lightly with the back of the palette knife against the mould . Then release the chocolates gently from the mould onto a sheet of paper on a stainless steel plate.
Wear gloves to avoid leaving fingermarks on the moulded chocolates. Ideally, place the mould on a cleaned surface to avoid attracting dust or chocolate crumbs. The pralines and moulds are always electrostatically charged for a short time and easily attract unwanted dust and crumbs.
Before the pouring you can create an attractive tint difference
through Fingerpainting the mould. This you do as follows:
1. Before the moulding, put a little dark, milk or white chocolate on your fingertip (For hygiene reasons, you are advised to wear a latex glove). With one quick finger movement draw a chocolate smear in the mould. Choose a colour that contrasts with the chocolate you will be using later for the pouring.
For praline moulds this is best done with the fingertips. You can also use this technique for larger moulds and hollow figures. For this you should pour a little tempered chocolate into the mould and spread it out with a brush. You'll find more details in the main section Decorating with Fingerpainting.
2. Allow to harden at room temperature.
3. Scrape the edges of the mould clean with the triangular palette knife. You can now cast or pour as described earlier.
Tip: when you fingerpaint with white chocolate, you should let it harden well before you continue with moulding in a darker colour. Most importantly, do your moulding using a thinner layer of milk or dark chocolate. If you add too thick a layer of chocolate, the heat is retained too long in the mould and the white chocolate will melt away. This would lose the effect.
Is the layer too thin and therefore too difficult to get out of the mould? You should let it harden until the chocolate feels dry to the touch and then apply a second layer. (For very large moulds you may even need a third layer.)
Which chocolate types are best suited to moulding pralines?
* For a medium chocolate shell:
All chocolate types with a basic viscosity () are suitable. They allow a chocolate layer with the perfect thickness. You have less chance of unwanted airbubbles than with a more fluid chocolate.
* For a fine chocolate shell:
Some chocolate lovers and craftsmen want the chocolate shell to be as fine and crunchy as possible. A more fluid chocolate containing 2% to 4% more cocoa butter is best for this. You can identify these types by the number 2 to 4 before the basic code ().