Casa Rosales

Casa Rosales

Tuesday, 26 November 2013

All home made...

I've been making chocolate and I promised on my last post that there'd be photos. Well there are, but I underestimated how difficult it is to take photographs whilst my hands are full!

I had wanted you to drool enjoy an online chocolate experience but instead, you may have to make do with just licking your lips a little.... no girding of loins necessary just yet. The full monty will have to wait for another day.

So, without further ado...

Milk chocolate melted to 42 degrees C


Cooling nicely ....




This is as cool as it needs to go before bringing the temperature back to about 29 degrees. This is called 'tempering' the chocolate. There are several methods - including putting it all on a marble slab - I'd love to try this but don't have a large marble slab....one day....so I 'seed' the hot chocolate with cold which helps to speed up the tempering process.

I tried very hard to capture a reading of 29 degrees, but every time I got there, I had to put the thermometer down, pick up the camera, point, focus....and by then, the coolness of the ambient temperature meant my reading had dropped...but this is a good temperature to work with the chocolate.

The milk chocolate was then poured into a tray - nice and thin - and sprinkled with a mixture of dried sour cherries, raisins, caramelised almonds and salted pistachios. The combination of sweet, sour, salty, chewy and crunchy is absolutely wonderful!

Next task - add the secret ingredient to the rest of the milk chocolate - popping candy!! This makes the chocolate pop in your mouth as you eat it...mind-blowing!
This was when it got rather tricky and I needed at least three hands...

Mind blowing popping dinosaurs....
and snails!

Chocolate bark, packed and ready to go.
And I also did a tray of white chocolate - this time sprinkled with intense-flavoured freeze-dried raspberry, the sour cherries and caramelised almonds. This is a lovely combination too as the fruit cuts through the sweetness of the chocolate.

I made dark chocolate too but, having found the photography fiddly and not a little risky, I didn't take any 'action shots'! I made the fruit and nut bark, some chocolate gingers and some after dinner mints.


Later on, the children found one of my Snakes and Ladders game that I use for teaching English. In fact, this is one that Romy made when she came to help me one day. And so they had a game of that. Only we had no counters, so they used a chickpea, a pinto bean and a white bean! Resourceful bunch they are!



Market day dawned rather frosty!!



Ruy volunteered to get up early and come and help. See, even our frost remover is 'home made' - it's a milk bottle top!

Yes, it was minus 6 degrees - and it wasn't 9.09am, it was 8.09am - we haven't put the clock back in the car! (Oh, it's dusty too, isn't it... I'll have a word in the right ear about that!)

Despite the cold, the sky was blue and La Mota looked spectacular in the morning sunshine.

The market was in car park of a bar just off the road between Alcala la Real and Alcaudete - and there was a pleasing number of other cars there.




However, I didn't get round to taking photos....but Ruy took a couple of me setting my stall out.

In the literal sense.











And we were able to nip in and get ourselves some nice toast with tomato and olive oil (absolutely delicious) and some coffee.

And Ruy had a bit of chocolate from time to time too....



I took my cards and my Zentangle stuff...and signed up another couple of people for the workshop later in the week!









And guess what! By 11 o'clock, I had to move everything around and stand in a strategic, shadow-casting shape as the sun had begun to melt my chocolates! Nothing too serious though. We had a good laugh, lots of chatting to fellow stall-holders and in the end, I discovered I had sold quite a bit of chocolate.

Just another week or so before the next market...which is the CHRISTMAS market!! So I shall be making chocolate Christmas trees, I think!


28 comments:

  1. The chocolate looks delicious. Do you offer tasting? I suspect that if you do people would be queuing up to partake. Love the idea of white chocolate with the raspberries.

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    1. I always put a tray of testers out. People fall into two categories - those who come up and take a piece without saying anything or making eye contact, then going away again. (Usually, they come back and buy though!) and those who tentatively look interested but don't like to ask...I offer them the chocolate. Once tasted, most people have to have more! Axxx

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  2. I'm going to have to say it again....wish I live closer.

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    1. I do sometimes wish the same. :-) Axxx

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  3. All look so tempting , I love Dark chocolate with raspberries too , You certainly have a great production line :-) xx

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    1. There is dark chocolate with raspberries...one of my favourites. My problem is I have too many ideas and not enough time to make them all. I have a lemon cheesecake truffle centre awaiting dipping in the fridge...that is awesome! Axxx

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  4. That photograph of La Mota is just gorgeous!

    And it's just as well I'm not closer as that white chocolate mix sounds just heavenly....while I can think of a good few French friends to whom to give popping snails!

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    1. La Mota was stunning on Sunday morning...

      I like the idea of giving popping snails to the French! Axxx

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  5. 6 degrees - in Spain ??? I can't get my head round the Spanish weather, but I could certainly get my dainty lips around those luscious chocs!

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    1. Minus 6, that is, Nilly! But amazing sunshine.Would love to do a craft fair with you. Actually, some of my best customers are usually other stall holders!! (I give out plenty testers first...that's what does it...then they're captive!) Axxx

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  6. I told myself I wouldn't look at this post...you did warn us...all I can say is Wow and I'm drooling :-(

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    1. Glad you popped by, Ayak. A bit of drooling now and again is OK...I think! Axxx

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  7. Now you are the temptress!!! I am now longing for some chocolate and I do not have any in the house - but just remembered some choc icecream lollies in the freezer - will have to make do with those.

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    1. Oh, I'd like to think so, Rosemary but I think if I had your photographic skills, I could REALLY do the job! I don't think I could face a choc icecream just now - feeling rather chilly! Axxx

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  8. How can you do this to us, Annie? Not only do all your chocolates look wonderful, but the descriptions make my mouth water with greed. I'm glad your stall went well. What a setting with La Mota and that crisp clear weather. :-)

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    1. I do think chocolates should be a feast for the eye (and the mind) too! La Mota was super spectacular on Sunday morning - maybe because I don't usually catch a glimpse of it so early in the morning... Axxx

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  9. Thank you so much for sharing your pictures and the process, Annie. I'm drooling here, especially at the bark and those snails. It's nice to have a better feel for what tempering chocolate means.

    I'm intrigued by your candy thermometer. I need to check one out like yours. I use the old fashioned type that clips onto the side of the pan when I make caramels. Yours looks a great deal easier to read and get an more accurate temperature.

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    1. I love the shape of the snails - and the popping part is an extra!
      I think I got my thermometer from the internet...it's excellent and the kids love to play with it too! It's very accurate - I'd struggle without it now, even though I spent more than 15 years without using anything other than my little finger!
      Axx

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  10. Your chocolate looks amazing Annie!!!

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    1. Thank you Sophie - it's taking up valuable blog-reading time though! Hope you're well. Axxx

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  11. La Mota looks so beautiful, and the chocolates look amazing...the combination is just irresistible. I too am very impressed with the accurate thermometer, and even more impressed by your dexterity in photographing things just at the right moment. I hade decided I didn't have time for chocolate making this Christmas, but I think this post has changed my mind. Mine wont be as gorgeous looking as yours, but the grandchildren love the idea that nana can make chocolate. Love to all, Jxxxxx

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    1. Wouldn't a chocolate Mota be lovely!! The photography was not good...and I risked messing up the chocolate AND the camera as I nearly dropped the latter into the former! And I think those gorgeous grandchildren possibly do deserve a chocolate-making nana....go on, give it a go!! And have fun... Axxx

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  12. Chocolate and Zentangle! I did drool... especially at the white chocolate.
    Sx

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    1. A winning combination, though a tad time consuming..
      I ate too much white chocolate today. Tomorrow, I must stick to the dark stuff... Axx

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  13. Ooh, yum! Of course they sold well, those chocs look perfect :)

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    1. Thanks Annie - I've been so busy making and selling chocolates that I've hardly had time to look after my blog or reading others! I shall make amends this week.. Axxx

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