Molds and Mouthfeel

Adhesiveness. Bounce. Chewiness. Coarseness. Cohesiveness. Denseness. Dryness. Fracturability. Graininess. Gumminess. Hardness. Heaviness. Moisture absorption. Moisture release. Mouthcoating. Roughness. Slipperiness. Smoothness. Springiness. Uniformity. Uniformity of Chew. Uniformity of bite. Viscosity. Wetness.

These are words used to classify Sensory Texture Profiling in food; texture, of course, is a vital aspect of the culinary experience. Which makes me want to talk to you about molds and mouthfeel. 

Micelli of New York makes beautiful, but expensive, custom chocolate molds. One day, we will commission them to make some for Bellflower. But for now, we are using generic molds ordered from Chocolat-Chocolat. Good ones: they're nice, heavy polycarbonate, but generic in design. 

Chocolate molds come in a wide variety of shapes and sizes, and it wasn't until I started using these molds that I realized how many bars on the market are wide and thin. I consciously chose this mold because I wanted function over form; there are prettier molds I could have chosen from, but I wanted a bar that was easy to break into uniform pieces, informed by my own experience of taking a square of dark chocolate after meals when I want something sweet, and always being disappointed at the uneven, flimsy pieces resulting from breaks of a thinner, unperforated bar. Breaking bars from this mold, by contrast, yields perfectly bite-sized squares of chocolate, in addition to producing something I wasn't expecting: a form of chocolate that has an incredible mouthfeel. 

Sliding your tongue over the ridges of the chocolate square until the top melts, flipping and turning it to hasten the process, is an incredibly pleasing experience. The weightiness of the block, solid and heavy, sits on your tongue, unapologetically consuming the entire space from tongue to roof, melting slowly: a timed-release, complex steep of chocolate, enrobing your palate. 

See also: Food Pairings Rely on Mouth-Feel and Food Rheology