JOHN WALKER CHOCOLATIER
What is Couverture Chocolate?
This is an industrial term given to top chocolate that contains minimum 31% cocoa butter (for milk chocolate minimum 31% being total of coca butter and milk fat), produced using high quality cocoa beans and ingredients which are combined in a very controlled manufacturing process.
The word “couverture” is protected under European law and can only be used to describe those chocolates which have a total fat content of at least 31%.
What is the difference between Compound and Couverture Chocolate?
Compound (baker’s chocolate) differs from couverture as the cocoa butter is substituted by an alternative vegetable fat and contains less cocoa paste. Hence, it is a cheaper lower quality product that is easier to use as it requires no tempering.
What is the difference between Milk, Dark and White Chocolate?
From the roasted cocoa beans go through a process to separate the cocoa mass into two parts cocoa butter (creamy white) and cocoa liquor (dark). These components are used in varying combinations to produce the different types of chocolates.
Dark chocolate consists of both but no milk components (full cream milk powders) added.
Milk chocolate consists of both with milk powders added.
White chocolate consists of cocoa butter and milk powders.
Why does Easter Chocolate taste different to normal chocolate?
Customers sometimes believe that we use a different quality chocolate at Easter. This is not the case as we use the same couverture all year round. However, at John Walker Chocolatier we have investigated this and came up with the possible reason why customers perceive our Easter Chocolates to be superior. The Easter shapes are spun in a mould to form hollow Easter chocolate shapes, trapped inside is a highly aromatic chocolate air. This is released when the Easter chocolate is being consumed which gives a person a burst of chocolate aroma. It is important to realise that taste and the enjoyment of food is primarily a function of aroma derived from food molecules passed over the Olfactory gland in the nose. This gives an added quality to the Easter Product. Secondly the spinning process results in a smooth well flavoured Easter Product. This is the traditional way of making Easter eggs and is the same method used by John Walker Chocolatier.
How do I melt and temper Couverture Chocolate?
Because of the cocoa butter content in couverture and the complex mixture of fats there are different melting and setting points and therefore, it is necessary to temper couverture before it can be used.
In simple terms, tempering is a process where you melt the couverture to 45 degrees Celsius cool down to (29 degrees Celsius Dark, 27 degrees Celsius Milk and 26 degrees Celsius White) then heat to (31 degrees Celsius Dark 29 degrees Celsius Milk and 28 degrees Celsius White), care must be taken that chocolate does not exceeds 32 degrees Celsius Dark, 30 degrees Celsius Milk and 29 degrees Celsius White.
Here are three methods which are used by professional chocolatiers, it is not easy at first and will require much practice and patience.
The following methods will require a double boiler (bowl sitting on a pot filled with enough water for bowl to sit in, but not touching bowl), marble bench and spatulas.
In a double boiler, melt chocolate to 45 degrees Celsius (couverture must never be heated above 50 degrees Celsius). Remove the bowl from double boiler, wipe all moisture from outside of bowl. Moisture must never come in contact with chocolate. Pour two thirds of chocolate onto marble slab (maintain the remaining third at 45 degrees Celsius).
With a spatula and palette knife in both hands continually work the edges into the centre of the mass spreading and repeating to achieve a uniform temperature drop. Care must be taken not to let mass set completely as require to evenly thicken (at this point the temperature will be 27 degrees Celsius). Once chocolate has thicken quickly return to the warm couverture in the bowl, mix them together until lump free. Couverture should be about 32 degrees Celsius for Dark, 29 degrees Celsius for Milk and 29 degrees Celsius for White.
Once couverture is successfully tempered, to maintain the couverture temperature top up with hot water as necessary.
Melt couverture in the same way to 45 degrees Celsius. Remove bowl from hot water and place over cold water. Slowly stirring the mass until you get some setting around edges and the bottom (27 degrees Celsius). Return bowl to hot water and stir until it registers 32 degrees Celsius Dark, 29 degrees Celsius Milk and 29 degrees Celsius White, while working couverture maintain temperature as above.
Melt two thirds of couverture to 45 degrees Celsius, the remaining third grate or chop (note the finer you can grate or chop couverture the easier it will be to mix back into melted couverture). Remove bowl from hot water (remove all moisture from around edges and bottom of bowl), slowly add the grated couverture a bit at a time while continually stirring once all has been added and free of lumps. It should register as 32 degrees Celsius Dark, 29 degrees Celsius Milk and 29 degrees Celsius White, while working with couverture maintaining temperature as above.
To set finished products cools at 14 degrees Celsius to 18 degrees Celsius in a dry place. DO NOT REFRIGERATE as this can risk condensation.
Unused couverture can be removed and re-used in the above methods.
How do I store Chocolate?
Chocolate is best stored in a cool dry place 18 degrees Celsius to 22 degrees Celsius, preferable in an air conditioned room. Chocolate should be avoided of being exposed to extremes of heat and cold, avoid direct sunlight. Chocolate must not be stored near strong smelling foods or products, i.e. onions, soaps, detergents, perfumes, etc.
John Walker Chocolatier products are produced using couverture so we don’t recommend refrigeration.
If you need to refrigerate, place chocolates in an airtight container then place in centre away from all strong smelling foods.
What is the meaning of John Walker Chocolatier?
Chocolatier is a French word meaning “Chocolate maker” so as the name implies it translates to John Walker the Chocolate maker. In Europe all master chocolate makers are referred to as the Chocolatier.
How often does John Walker Chocolatier range change?
As the range on our website is only a small part of our range of products, we continually add new products, especially seasonal ranges such as Valentine’s Day, Easter, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day and Christmas.
There may be occasions when products are not available due to being sold out or out of production due to unforeseen production problems. Please enquire if you cannot find your favourite!
Where can I buy John Walker Chocolatier Products?
Please contact your nearest John Walker Chocolatier store or you can order online.
Shop 300, Garden City Shopping Centre
Phone 08 9364 7939
Shop 40, London Court
Phone 08 9221 2704
Shop G70B, Karrinyup Shopping Centre
Phone 08 9446 4300
What methods of payments does John Walker Chocolatier accept?
Online – Paypal
Stores – Visa, Mastercard, and American Express.
What are the refund policies for John Walker Chocolatier?
John Walker Chocolatier will refund or replace your order for the following reasons:
During summer and any days of extreme heat, we advise that you purchase a “Hot Weather Protection Pack” to ensure your chocolates stay cool during transit. If a Hot Weather Protection Pack was not purchased we will not refund if your chocolates arrive melted.
When supplying delivery address and recipients details ensure that these are correct (full address and recipients name including company name) as we will not refund your order if incorrect or insufficient delivery information is provided.
On delivery date that is requested ensure recipient is going to be home. If the parcel is returned to the post office and is not collected after five working days, this will be returned to us. In this circumstance, we will charge you the standard $13.50 delivery fee to resend the parcel to the correct address.