The world loves chocolate. That is certainly no secret. Cultures and nations may vary on the level of cocoa they prefer, but the vast majority of humanity has embraced the beauty and comfort of chocolate. When we think of chocolate, we often think of our favorite candy bar or the confectionary creations of a world renowned chocolatier, but rarely do we ever envision the use of high tech machines doing the intricate chocolate work. However, today’s world is vastly changing and now even chocolate is being perfectly sculpted by advanced 3D Printers.

A Temperate Nature

The history of chocolate is somewhat of a mystery. Archaeologists estimate the invention of chocolate was somewhere between 1100 and 1400 BC in Escondido, Honduras, but the exact date is unknown. Speculations abound as to who made chocolate available to the masses. However, no matter who first produced chocolate, it has become a phenomenal addition to both sweet and savory dishes the world over.

Although most of us love the flavor of chocolate, only those that have worked with this peculiar subject understand its intricate nature. Chocolate does not become the beautiful shiny substance we like to see in chocolatery windows by itself. It takes a skillful hand to bring the chocolate up to just the right temperature. Allowing the chocolate to slightly rise and fall in temperature is known as tempering and is important for high quality chocolate production.

Traditional method of Tempering Chocolate on a marble slab with a skilled hand to allow crystallization within the product to produce a glossy finish for chocolate production.

An Excellent Marriage

Tempering chocolate is a very intricate process that takes skill and attention to very small variations in temperature. This is what makes 3D Printing chocolate possible. 3D Printers utilise heat to melt materials to the proper temperature for extrusion. A 3D Printer made specifically for chocolate work has the ability to maintain the correct temperature of the product. As for tempering the chocolate, temperature can be adjusted easily to ensure proper tempering takes place. Very small changes in temperature make a significant impact on the glossy or matte nature of the final product. Ideally, your final product, if properly tempered, will produce a high gloss finish. 3D Printers are perfect for this application.

Properly tempered 3D Printed chocolate piece

Complex Designs

One of the main benefits of 3D Printed chocolates is the ability to completely customise complex designs for your clientele. Even the most skilled chocolatier will have certain design limitations when it comes to making intricate designs. The human hand can do many things, but it takes an extreme amount of attention to pressure and a very steady hand to produce some of the more intricate chocolate pieces.

3D Printers made for chocolate are designed with a specific nib that maintains the temperature of the chocolate while controlling the flow. You need not worry about a pastry bag tearing or a sudden clog ruining your creation when using a 3D Printer. Sculpting and modeling with the use of 3D Printers and chocolate ensure that the creation is never impacted by traditional factors, but maintains a pure, smooth transition from machine to plate for a truly artisanal final product.

A variety of intricately 3D Printed chocolate models.

What Does the Future Hold?

The culinary world is an interesting animal. There are those that take the rich traditions within the industry to heart and have a stark inability to change even the tiniest of detail for fear it might impact the quality of the final product. However, there are chocolatiers who are embracing new technologies to see what can be done with this already spectacular ingredient.

For those that are stuck in a world of tradition, hats off to you for keeping the art of traditional chocolate making alive. We will always need a reminder of our roots, especially within the culinary industry. As for the few pioneers raging forward with their 3D Printed chocolates, your future is bright.

More and more foodies and culinary enthusiasts throughout the world are looking for what is new in the industry of food. The same thing, can be comforting, but often a little boring at times as well. It is true that the traditional chocolate artists are not set to go anywhere and we are thankful for that. On the flip side of things, the future of 3D Printed chocolates is still an unknown. Chocolate 3D Printers are now just beginning to make a supreme impact in the culinary art world and even stark traditionalists are beginning to take note. However, from the looks of these impressive 3D Printed chocolates, our mouths are salivating as we speak.

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