Mommy, Where Do Easter Bunnies Come From? March 10, 2010Posted by Saara in Behind the Scenes, Easter.
No longer will you need to resort to explaining the slightly disturbing image of a rabbit and a chicken that is all over the internet at this time of year. What follows is a series of photos that show how chocolate Easter bunnies are made. Well, at least here at The C Shop. 🙂
First, open your box of Guittard chocolate. This is not your average box. It contains 50 pounds of chocolate. Inside, there are five 10 pound bars that need to be broken up. See boxes and bars here. Then it needs to be melted, put into 5 gallon pails and kept in the hot box where it stays melted until we’re ready to put it into the tempering machine. Once it’s tempered, the fun part begins.
First, we grab a gang of bunny molds from the shelf …
Then the appropriate amount of chocolate is pumped out of the tempering machine into the mold. This particular mold is for a solid bunny so it gets filled up with 7 ounces of chocolate. The chocolate is warm at this point, about 90°F.
Since we want to make sure that all of the mold is filled, we then put the mold on a chocolate vibrator to shake out all the air bubbles. If you look closely, you can see the bubbles coming up in the bunny bottoms.
Here’s Mandy vibrating the “Roadster Bunny” mold. This one is hollow so she’s rotating it to evenly disperse the chocolate around the inside of the mold. It’s normally in a gang, but she just needed to make a couple of these for the Skagit Co-op.
Then the gangs or individual books get put on this crazy contraption. It’s a rotator and it spins and twirls the molds to coat the mold with the chocolate and cool evenly. As you can see, there’s a fan pointed at it. When they come off the rotator they are placed on shelves, again with fans blowing on them, and allowed to cool the rest of the way.
As chocolate cools, it shrinks slightly and the buns usually just pop out of their molds easily. This is one of our semi-sweet bunnies being trimmed of excess flash. We use an insulating pad if we have “hot hands” to keep from melting the bunnies. Meanwhile, we’re all bundled up since we keep the room cold for the chocolate!
Next some of the bunnies get decorated and some might need repair. We try to have them look as perfect as possible, but they’re handmade so they all have character. 😉
Once decorated, they are almost ready to go. Here’s a wrack of rabbits waiting to be bagged. On the left is the 12 ounce “Herman” and the handsome fella on the right is known as “Best Dressed”.
After they’ve been bagged and tagged, the bunnies get distributed between the orders. Once each order is filled, they are delivered to the stores. We deliver them ourselves to assure they all arrive safely in one piece.
We hope you’ve enjoyed seeing where Easter bunnies come from as much as we enjoy making them for you.
If you want to see the really big bunnies “Annabelle” or “Regal Roger”, visit one of the retail locations listed in my previous post or come to the shop for the annual Easter egg hunt on Saturday, April 3rd!