We've developed a series of fun and quick lessons in chocolate making. Learn to taste and compare, melt and temper, mix and match, dip and mold!
Up until the twenty-first century, most North Americans thought that chocolate only had one flavor because chocolate bars and confections were primarily made of a homogenous milk chocolate. But in fact, chocolate manufacturers produce a great variety of chocolates.
What are the ingredients in chocolate, and how do they affect chocolate flavor?
Why do dark chocolate bars vary so much in flavor? When you buy a semisweet dark chocolate bar, for example, it could taste very different from another brand. What exactly is all this talk about chocolate percentage and what impact does that have on flavor?
A quick lesson on how great chocolate is made from bean to bar. Each step in the process is crucial to entice the best flavor from the bean.
Many consumers have specific dietary concerns when it comes to chocolate making. There is also confusion about fair trade, direct trade and cocoa sourcing.
Cocoa butter is the fat in the cacao bean that gives chocolate its unique mouth-feel and stable properties. To be considered “real” chocolate, a chocolate bar or chunk can contain only cocoa butter, not any other fat. Cocoa butter is the reason why you have to “temper” real chocolate.
Dipping wonderful goodies like fudge, roasted nuts or candied ginger in chocolate is easy. You just have to learn the technique and then practice to get a perfect coating.
Chocolate molds have been around since chocolate consumption moved from predominately drinking chocolate to predominately eating chocolate.
Nothing is more wonderful then the rich chocolate smell coming from a cup of steaming hot chocolate. This is my drink of choice for around 11:00 a.m. on the weekend.
With truffles you have the chocolate to end all chocolates—rich, unbelievably smooth texture and flavor. One of the joys of owning my own chocolate shop was that I was required to taste truffles wherever I went to make sure ours were the best! It was certainly a labor of love.
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