Backstory: During the first COVID lockdown, with the stay at home order, I thought it would a good idea to improve my chocolate skills by making multiple showpieces at home: an iceberg with a polar bear, a queen bee on top of her honey box, and a large chocolate animal. Most of the showpieces were not as good as I’d imagined them to be, but with each of these projects I was able to learn something and improve my skills a little along the way.Read More
Dragees. Dragees or panned products have been made popular for the past couple of years. Pastry chefs around the world are trying to enrobe, tumble, anything and everything. No longer will your chocolate covered just almonds, peanuts, and raisins and come in small confectionery packages called Glosettes. Nowadays, pastry chefs and chocolatier will try to pan cereal, puffed grains, toffee, gummies with various flavour combinations and finishing them with different colours making them very attractive and appealing. In many instances, taking something that is done in the commercial world and trying to refine it usually have a few issues:
1) Public perception. Why would I pay $12/ jar for chocolate covered raisins when I Glosettes
2) Time. There are limitations to the batch size since we are using small tabletop panners
3) Money. Nuts are expensive, and unless you’re buying hundreds of kilos
4) Lack of knowledge. We are still missing some trade secrets to get the ultimate shine.
5) Exposure to resources. Glazes and polish are sold by the 10s of gallons.
6) Co-packing. But there lies an issues of – is it artisan any more? Read More
For some time now, I have been debating whether or not it’s worthwhile to polish panned products. The approach of making your chocolate panned items shine is becoming more and more popular recently. This process is sometimes finicky, the final shine is very much dependent on time, temperature, relative humidity, and even batch size – many variables as you can see. I guess it comes down to a preference, what do you prefer?