Post by Barbara Ann on May 4, 2019 18:36:45 GMT -5
I’ve read its best to clean chocolate molds with only hot water and a soft cloth. I’m in the process of applying for a Cottage Food License in California, and equipment and utensils used to prepare food are required to be washed with soap and hot water and then sanitized with a bleach solution. How does everyone handle the cleaning of their molds to meet health standards while maintaining the integrity of their molds? Thank you.
Hi Barbara Ann. I believe that most people do not wash their molds between each use. Instead, they just polish the cavities to ensure a good shine.
I thought that most state's regulations said something like that things need to be washed and sanitized using a standard process, or as directed by the manufacturer. If CA's regulations say something like that, then you should be able to show that you are following the manufacturer's instructions.
If not, you've obviously got to follow the regs. I've never noticed any degradation of my molds from washing, so my guess is that they'll be fine for a long time, even with relatively frequent washings.
I'm a manufacturer (mostly to wholesale accounts and private label) in Texas and the FDA inspector has stated that using a quaternary cleaner is an acceptable when the molds are going to be stored. I haven't seen (or been told about) anything that requires cleaning at that level while in the production process.
Eventually all chocolate molds need to be cleaned. Rubbing them with a cotton cloth is an easy way to scratch the gloss right out of them, so I don't honestly recommend doing that with the exception of wiping a small piece of chocolate out of a mold that is otherwise in good shape for another run. After all, when you look at the anatomy of chocolate it's essentially a paste of abrasives suspended in fat. Rubbing the molds with a cotton cloth has just the same effect as writing "wash me" in the dirt on the side of a car. It scratches the mold forever. If you have intricate designs you'll find that chocolate will adhere to the tiny cracks and crevices after a while.
Now.... People are going to disagree with me here, but the fact is that we've used the same molds every single day for 11 years, and made well over 200,000 chocolate bars with them and the bars they produce are just as shiny and smooth as the bars from the new lot of molds we've just purchased.
The best way to clean your molds is the following: 1. Soak them in hot water for a couple of minutes to get most of the chocolate off. 2. Transfer the mold to a sink filled with a combination of water and Sodium Hydroxide. Sodium Hydroxide is a common, food safe degreaser used in almost every commercial kitchen. It is VERY effective and potent. A little goes a long way. 500ml of a pre-mixed NAOH cleaner (found in commercial food stores) in a large sink with hot water is enough. You'll know you've got enough when you dunk you mold, then try to hold on to it. It will be SUPER slippery. 2. Gently (using a microfibre cloth) work the cloth into the corners of the mold. ALL cocoa butter and chocolate will come off and the mold will literally be shiny as new. 3. Remove the mold from the Sodium Hydroxide solution. You will see the water bead off, kind of like a waxed finish on a car. At this point you will know that there is nothing binding to the surface of the mold to hold the water in place. The mold is perfectly clean. 4. Give the mold a quick rinse under clean hot water, and then blow dry with an air compressor.
It's important to blow dry the mold because every drop of water has minerals in it which cause water spots and not only blemish the surface of your chocolate, but also give cocoa butter a surface to grab on to when setting.
This method of cleaning your molds will result in perfectly safe and clean molds every single time.