Shop Project: Alissa

scarborough fair
Well, I’m back in Minnesota now. The last week of school was such a whirlwind that I’m trying to catch up now while I’m unpacking my new place. I had a number of big projects due the last week. One of them was my shop project (where you develop a few products to be sold in the shop). Mine was everyone’s favorite indulgences: CHEESE and CHOCOLATE.

Here were some of my chocolate bars on the shelf in the SHOP.

I developed three flavors of cheese: jalepeno cheddar, scarborough fair, and smoked.

I molded the cheeses in a ring mold and chilled them to set the shape. For the smoked cheese, I gave it a pepper crust.

pepper crust
Next, they were placed in the dehydrator to form a bit of a rind on the outside. Like so.

scarborough fair
Here you can see the inside of a wheel of scarborough fair cheese (sage, rosemary, and thyme) with a little bit of a rind on the outside.

pouring molds
The chocolate was a little more complicated (and admittedly less successful). Here I am pouring my chocolate into the molds. The trick with chocolate is in the tempering.

crystals forming
Here you can see the crystals forming on the shiny wet surface of the chocolate.

If all goes well, you end up with something that looks like this. Unfortunately, it doesn’t always work out that way.

Here are some bars that I made. Well tempered chocolate should have a smooth, shiny surface that snaps when you break it. These were getting there.

This is an example of bloom. You can see a perfect shiny spot on the surface, but it’s unfortunately inconsistent. The rest is called bloom. Blooms can be caused by sugar or fat. I’m honestly not entirely sure what happened to this batch. It went through a lot of meltdowns before it got to this point.

shiny bar
This bar turned out a little more consistent, but not as shiny as the spot on the one above. Which means that I haven’t reached my true chocolate potential yet. I might have to save the rest of this experiment for later…

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