Molding chocolates is as messy and fun as playing with mud pies. What you basically do is pour a bunch of melted chocolate over a mold, run a scraper over it, bang the bubbles out, flip it over to drain off all the excess chocolate, scrape again, flip back over, cool it, fill it, and then pour a bunch more melted chocolate over it and scrape one last time. Cool, then flip over and let the little chocolates drop out. That simple. Pour, scrape, bang, flip, scrape, flip, sit, fill, pour, scrape, scream, cuss, cry, eat, smile, laugh and hire an undocumented worker to clean up after you.
Well, sort of that simple. Here are some pics, followed by tips:
Use a long-handled scraper to scrape the excess chocolate from the mold. You want a clean surface so the chocolates will release from the mold easily and look nice. But whatever you do, don’t get any moisture on the mold or the chocolates can be ruined.
After the mold has been filled with chocolate and the excess scraped off; give it a good long vibrating shake, then knock the bottom and sides with a meat mallet or hammer until all the air bubbles are gone. This is an important step that is easily forgotten, but can make the difference between beautiful chocolates and ones that look like they were eaten by mice. (I don’t have any pictures of this step because whenever I grab hold of the meat mallet Mira runs for cover.)
Then scrape again.
After filling and scraping, let the chocolate sit from three to five minutes. The longer it sits, the thicker the shell. Then it is ready to flip over.
Flip the chocolate over onto the Pyrex pan, your beautiful marble, or the Pyrex bowl if it is big enough, allowing the chocolate to pour out. Scrape one more time as it hangs upside down to ensure the neatest shells possible. Then flip it back up and allow to cool a few minutes.
After the shells have cooled, fill with ganache using pastry bag or squeeze bottle to fill shells.
Leave a small space between the top of the filling and the edge of the mold for capping. After filling, let ganache sit for about fifteen minutes to firm up, then pour more tempered chocolate over the mold, scraping with the side of the scraper to remove any excess.
These chocolates are ready to unmold. Notice the near-clear cavities — the chocolates have pulled away from the sides of the mold and will come right out.
After chilling in the refrigerator about fifteen minutes, place in freezer for about 5-7 minutes and they should look like the picture above. If the do not come out readily, and you do not see any evidence of pulling away from shells, they aren’t ready to unmold.
If you did not scrape all the chocolate from the top of the mold, you will have edges like these. Don’t despair, just trim with a sharp paring knife.
The pictures above show how chocolates are molded using polycarbonate molds. To learn more about the different types of molds, click on my mold page.
More on molding coming up, as I add a bit more little by little, so come back again soon and there should be more — and as always, add comments or contact me with questions. And remember, I’m just an amateur, so throw in your own ideas, corrections, suggestions, etc. as you like!