Saturday, April 10, 2010

Chocolate Demonstration

Another HEC event today, this time a chocolate demonstration sponsored by Guittard. It was held in the food labs and consisted of a half dozen stations, each making a different type of chocolate. In the center of the space was a larger table at which Chef Peter Greweling from the Culinary Institute of America made a chocolate sculpture.

My partner and I made citrus truffles, citrus bonbons, and caramelized white chocolate hot chocolate. Everything was a hit. One guy even said, "These are the best truffles I've ever had."

This event was another first: interacting with guests. Guests would walk by our station, sample chocolates, and ask questions.

The recipe below is for chocolate ganache and is perfectly scaled for adding other flavors (peanut butter, citrus peel, herbs, spices, liqueurs, etc).

Chocolate Ganache
180 g heavy cream
60 g glucose (or corn syrup)
30 g flavor** (this can be anything, see above for ideas)
20 g butter
430 g dark chocolate

**If using a non-liquid flavoring (herbs, spices, citrus peel), heat the cream, pour over flavoring, and let steep for about half an hour. Strain the cream and use for ganache. Discard what's left in the sieve. If using something that will incorporate into the chocolate well (jam, peanut butter, nutella, etc), you can just add with the butter.

Heat cream and glucose to simmer. Pour over chocolate. Let sit 30 seconds. Mix with rubber spatula. Add butter and flavoring. If not completely melted, place over double boiler for a couple seconds and stir. Pour into pan, cover with plastic wrap (so the plastic touches the chocolate) and let sit for about an hour.

At this point you can table the chocolate to use for truffles, pipe it into chocolate molds for bonbons, eat it as is, etc.

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