To make my chocolate, I start with melting cacao mass and cacao butter and pouring them into the melanger. I then add coconut sugar. However, the temperature of the chocolate in the grinder rises to 53C and stays there for 24h. I am pretty sure my chocolate is overheating because the melanger is too hot to handle when unloading it. Also, my chocolate has this unpleasant taste and smell that I can’t put my finger on. It’s almost metallic, artificial and plastic-y. I don’t know if this is a possibility as well, but what if the coconut sugar is caramelising/burning at that temp?
I spoke to different people who operate a melanger and they all said that they actually struggle with getting the temperature of the mixture high enough in the melanger and have to use a heat gun.
Any advice would be great! I’m stuck and don’t really know what to do and if I should get another Premier Refiner?
P.S what’s the best way to wash it maybe I’m damaging the drum by using very hot water and soap after every run?
53C (@128f) is no problem. When I was using a stone grinder, my chocolate would get up to 63C (145F). Chocolate is also regularly conched at temperatures that are higher still.
Is this a brand new grinder? If so, did you wear it in using oil and sugar or water? If not, you may be getting some of the stone in your chocolate.
If not that, I'd look at your ingredients as they are the most likely culprits.
For cleaning, it's generally not recommended to use soap since the stone is somewhat porous and could trap some of the soap leading to soap flavors in your chocolate. Unless your water is 72C (162F), the water temp is not a problem. Even at that temp, it's probably not a problem, but could lead to the breakdown of the epoxy holding the different parts of the bowl together.
I have also had this problem with similarly wierd tasting chocolate and, like you, have been using soap and water to wash the machine. Did you find a solution? I’m not really sure how to get the grinder properly clean without using washing up liquid and water. I ran several oil and sugar runs at the beginning.
I would get some cocoa butter and run it in the refiner for a bit. If you are getting granite particles in it, there is your problem. If it tastes like soap, hopefully you will have removed it all. I seasoned my stones with cocoa butter and they release a lot of material.
When I do a deep clean, I use hot water only. I dry it very thoroughly and then re-season with cocoa butter. The only time I really scrub ours down is when I'm switching origins, and even then I may just use cocoa butter to clean. I have also used Everclear because it evaporates very quickly. Hopefully that helps. Good luck!