Category Archives: Chocolates

Hot Choc lollies

Here is a great idea for a Christmas present that I found in my friend Nadine’s blog: Nuage de farine. These lollies are very pretty and would make a chocoholic friend very happy indeed!

HotChocLollies_001

Source: Nuage de farine

Ingredients
For 20 lollies

450g dark chocolate
45g sugar
Flavour of your choice: cinnamon, vanilla extract, chilli powder…

Method

  1. Melt the chocolate, sugar and spice in the TM bowl 3 min/50C/speed 3.
  2. Mix 3 min/speed 2 until smooth and the chocolate has reached 32C (stop the blades and remove lid before measuring the temperature with a probe).
  3. Pour into mini silicone moulds (about 2.5cl capacity).
  4. Leave to set in the fridge for 7 min and place wooden sticks in the middle of each mould (the chocolate needs to be slightly set but soft enough to easily dig the sticks).
  5. Let set completely in the fridge, unmould the lollies, wrap them in cellophane and tie with a ribbon if offering.
  6. Add following instructions with the lollies: melt 1 lolly in a mug of hot milk and enjoy!
  7. Note: the mini chocolate bars pictured above were made using only dark chocolate, melted the same way in the Thermomix and poured over a silicone mould, which I had previously sprinkled with dessicated coconuts…HotChocLollies_002

 

Chocolate butterflies

This is not really a recipe but an idea of decoration or Christmas present. I got these polycarbonate chocolate moulds and I used them to make lovely butterflies that look really nice on a cake. You can also offer them beautifully wrapped in a cellophane bag.

ChocButterfly_002 ChocButterfly_003

Ingredients
(For 5 butterflies as per mould pictured)

Candy melts (choose several pastel colours, 3 candy melt chips per colour)
250g dark chocolate

Method

  1. Temper the chocolate: melt it to 50-55C, then bring down the temperature to 28C (either by adding unmelted chocolate or pouring it out onto a marble slab). Reheat the chocolate gently to 31-32C and keep at that temperature until use. For the Thermomix method of tempering chocolate, go here and follow steps 7 to 9.
  2. Melt a small amount of candy melts in several containers (1 per colour) in the microwave in 30sec bursts.
  3. Using a toothpick, fill the depressions in the mould with the candy melts, alternating colours. Try to do 1 butterfly at a time and fill with the tempered chocolate straight away while the candy melt is still soft. If the melts cool before the chocolate is poured in, they will split from the chocolate when unmoulding.
  4. Leave to set in a cool place (8 to 10C) for 10 to 15 min.
  5. When completely set, free the chocolate butterflies.

ChocButterfly_001_01

Coffee infused chocolate tarts

This is another gem from “I love chocolate, I love Thermomix” cookbook and what a deliciously decadent dessert that is! The chocolate is enhanced by the coffee and the pastry is nice and crisp, not too hard but still holds its shape. I decorated it with homemade chocolate ruffles (see a good video here on how to make them) but you can do any decoration you like (in the book they say to make chocolate lattice using a paper cone).

I made them in mini tartlets version, which are the perfect size to serve with tea or coffee. You can of course make them in bigger tart shells if you wish.

ChocolateTart_004 ChocolateTart_006

Source: I love chocolate, I love Thermomix cookbook

Ingredients

Chocolate pastry
170g plain flour
25g unsweetened cocoa powder (I used Bournville)
50g caster sugar
100g salted butter, diced and very cold
1 large egg

Chocolate and coffee ganache
200g whipping cream
2 tsp granular instant coffee
200g dark semi-sweet chocolate (I used a good 58% cocoa chocolate)

Decorations
100g good dark chocolate (not too strong, 58 to 64% cocoa), melted and tempered

ChocolateTart_007

Method

  1. Make the chocolate pastry: sieve the flour and cocoa powder together by Turbo pulsing a few times.
  2. Add the butter and sugar, Turbo pulse in short burst until fine crumbs form.
  3. Add the egg and Turbo pulse in short burst JUST until clinging together.
  4. Press down into buttered and floured tartlet cases. Alternatively, chill in the fridge for 1 hour and roll into a floured surface. Line buttered and floured tart tins with the dough. Chill in the fridge for 1 hour to prevent shrinkage during baking.ChocolateTart_001
  5. Bake blind at 180C for 10 min for small tartlets (less than 5cm diameter), 15 min for bigger ones. Remove the baking beans and continue cooking in the oven for 3 minutes more. Cool in the tins on a rack.ChocolateTart_002
  6. Dark chocolate ganache: heat the cream and instant coffee 3 min/50C/speed 3.
  7. Add the chocolate and stir to a smooth cream 3 to 4 min/speed 3 with no heat.
  8. Set aside 10 minutes to cool a little then pour into the baked pastry cases. Cool at room temperature 45 minutes and refrigerate for 2 hours before serving.
  9. Decorations: warm the chocolate 2 min/37C/speed 2, scraping down the sides then finishing melting 3 min/speed 2.
  10. Make the ruffles as per the video or pour into a paper cone to create a nice lattice pattern over greaseproof paper. Set in the fridge 10 minutes before using.

ChocolateTart_008 ChocolateTart_005

Palets au chocolat

ILoveChocBook_001

I have just acquired this fantastic book “I love chocolate, I love Thermomix” (available as a host gift in the UK and Ireland only), and boy is it a gorgeous book! I have spent an hour looking through all the recipes and photos, all more mouth watering than the other. It happened that I had to find an idea of gift for my daughter’s teacher as it is the end of the school year and I found the perfect present in the form of those chocolate discs with fruits and seeds. Who wouldn’t like those? They not only look a picture, but they are also yummy and very good for you since there are only good wholesome ingredients in it. They are also very easy to make because with Thermomix, tempering chocolate is a breeze. Its accurate temperature control means that you don’t need a thermometer when making perfectly tempered chocolate. All you need to do is follow the instructions (respect the quantities and times given) and you will get a superb shiny finish to your chocolate creations.

PaletsChoc_001

Source: I love chocolate, I love Thermomix

PaletsChoc_003

Ingredients

200g dark chocolate (I used 55% cocoa chocolate, as it is perfect for tempering)
Mixed seeds and grains of choice (pumpkin, sunflower, sesame, flax…)
Mixed dried fruits (raisins, goji berries, cranberries, sultanas…)

PaletsChoc_002

Method

  1. Have the mixed seeds and berries ready mixed in a plate for sprinkling.
  2. Grind the chocolate 10 sec/speed 8.
  3. Melt the chocolate 4 minutes/37C/speed 2. Scrape down the sides of the TM bowl and continue mixing without temperature 2 min/speed 2 or until it reaches 32C (stop your TM, remove lid and check with a temperature probe). I didn’t bother using a thermometer, just mixing for the whole 2 minutes and then proceeded to the next step.
  4. Pipe the chocolate in discs about 3 cm in diameter on silicone or parchment paper. I used silicone moulds with a flat bottom and just poured directly from the bowl.
  5. Lift the paper and shake gently to flatten the piped discs and sprinkle immediately with the mixed seeds and berries.
  6. Leave to set and serve when required.
  7. You’ll have quite a bit of hardened chocolate left in the bowl, so why not make a scrumptious hot chocolate with the Thermomix to use it all up??

PaletsChoc_004

Homemade Easter egg

I have made homemade chocolates before here. However, this is my first attempt at an Easter egg. I had bought the special moulds in my favourite bakeware shop last January during the sales and was eagerly waiting for Easter to try them out. So here I was finally using the eggs mould, all excited when I decided to give them a wash (they were pretty clean but thought they might be a bit dusty). No harm done there but then I got a “brilliant” idea. I had used my oven earlier in the day to make banana and chocolate cakes so it was still pretty warm. I thought, wouldn’t it dry them quicker if I slip them inside the oven?? Worst idea ever. At first, they looked fine but after 10 minutes, I was horrified to see they had started to lose shape on the edges. I took them out pronto and tried re-shaping them to no avail. I still decided to go ahead since the egg shape itself hadn’t been too disformed and I thought it would still look OK. Well, from a certain angle it does look OK but unfortunately, the 2 halves have lost their perfect symmetry so one is slightly bigger than the other. I learned my lesson and will probably have to drop by the shop again to get a fresh set…

EasterEgg_001

Ingredients

200g dark couverture chocolate (55% cocoa) – I used chocolate callets but if you have it in a block, cut into chunks and process a few seconds on speed 6 to break down in small bits.
30g white chocolate (I used Valrhona ivory couverture chocolate)
2 Easter egg  plastic moulds (14cm high)

EasterEgg_004

Method

  1. Warm the white chocolate in a bain marie (I don’t use Thermomix for such a small amount) and pour over both half egg. Spread with a silicone spatula to cover the half but try to keep the layer very thin and uneven to create a marble effect. Let them cool until set.
  2. Temper 200g dark chocolate 4 min/50C/speed 2. Half-way through, scrape down the callets of chocolate that have stuck to the sides. At the end of the 4 minutes, there should be unmelted bits of chocolate. Stir them with the spatula to melt. This stage is important as the unmelted chocolate will contain the crystals that will ensure the proper tempering of the chocolate, dropping the temperature and making it nice and shiny when set.
  3. Pour some of the chocolate on both half eggs and tilt them on all sides to cover every inch of the egg. Pour back the excess in the TM bowl (this can be messy but don’t use any utensil to help doing this). Scrape the edges of the eggs with a flat spatula and turn them upside down on a grid to let the remaining excess drip out. Scrape every so often to keep the edges sharp.
  4. While the chocolate sets, keep the remaining chocolate at 37C (don’t forget to program a time otherwise the Thermomix won’t heat) in the Thermomix so it doesn’t set in the bowl. It will be near impossible to take set chocolate out as the blades won’t spin.
  5. When the first layer of chocolate is set, pour another layer of melted chocolate and tilt again to cover the egg evenly. Remove excess, scrape the edges and let drip. Keep scraping the edges to keep them sharp and straight.
  6. Check the thickness of the chocolate. It should be about 3 mm thick. If not, continue pouring melted chocolate over the set layers until the right thickness is reached (I only needed 2 layers but it depends on the chocolate).
  7. Once completely cold and set, unmould each egg half by pulling the edges slightly and tap the egg gently upside-down against your worktop. It should fall off easily.
  8.  Put some of the remaining melted chocolate into a small piping bag (I used a DYI greaseproof paper bag, check the video here to see how to make one). At this stage, if you want to fill the egg with small chocolate eggs wrapped in foil, do this now. Pipe a small line of melted chocolate on the edge of one egg half.
  9. Carefully place the other half over and keep in position until set.

EasterEgg_003

Tulipes of red berry mousse

What do you do when you have some Berry mousse leftover? Well, chocolates filled with berry mousse of course! I love the way white chocolate goes so well with red berries. Of course, you could also use a good quality dark or milk chocolate for this recipe. It’s important to have individual silicone moulds for the look and the ease of unmoulding your chocolates. Also, I froze them before unmoulding to avoid cracking the chocolate case when taking them out of the mould…

Ingredients

For 6 tulipes or individual silicone moulds (6 cl each)

300g Berry mousse

120g good quality white chocolate drops (like Couverture Ivoire from Valrhona)

Method

  1. Melt the chocolate in the Thermomix for 2 min/50C/speed 2 or until melted.
  2. With a brush, apply a layer of chocolate inside each mould, making sure that everywhere is covered.
  3. Let it set in the fridge for 5 minutes
  4. Apply a second layer of chocolate (if the chocolate starts to set in the TM bowl, reheat it gently 1 min/37C/speed 1). When you can’t see the mould underneath, you are done.
  5. Let it set again in the fridge for a few minutes and spoon in the berry mousse. Spread the mousse evenly using a spatula and fill to the top of the mould.
  6. Freeze for 2 hours minimum, then unmould when it’s completely frozen.
  7. Let it thaw in the fridge about 2 hours (or 1 hour at room temperature) before serving.

 

 

Chocolats faits maison (Handmade Chocolates)

This is the sixth and last recipe from the panier gourmand and I saved the best for last. These treats are sure to impress and can be a bit finecky but are worth the time and effort, I promise! I made 3 sorts: black and white chocolates, dark chocolates filled with an almond praline and dark chocolates filled with butter caramel. You will need special silicone moulds for these. They are available on internet or in specialist shops. You will also need dark chocolate with 55% cocoa. the reason being is that these have a higher content in cocoa butter, which will help the tempering process as explained below.

Black and White Chocolates

(Source: La main á la pâte)

Makes 30 chocolates

Ingredients

250g good quality white chocolate cut in chunks (I used Valrhona)
250g Dark chocolate (55% cocoa) cut in chunks

Method

  1. Chop the white chocolate in the TM bowl 15 sec/raising the speed progressively from 5 to 10
  2. Scrape down the bowl and cook for 4 min/50C/speed 2 (the chocolate must be smooth and completely melted)
  3. Pour into half the moulds. Tap the mould to remove air bubbles.
  4. Let it set in the fridge.
  5. Clean the bowl and proceed the same way with the dark Chocolate.
  6. Pour into the mould until it reaches the top and scrape with the back of a long knife to remove the excess chocolate.
  7. Set in the fridge for 10 minutes or until completely set, then unmould.

 

Dark chocolates filled with almond praline

(Source: La main á la pate)

Makes 30 chocolates

Ingredients

200g dark chocolate (55% cocoa is better) cut in chunks

Almond praline

150g dark chocolate, cut into chunks
200g whole almonds (mine were blanched)
40g skimmed milk powder
200g icing sugar

Method

  1. First, make the chocolate praline: put the almonds in the bowl and mix for 20 sec/speed 8 until it is a fine powder
  2. Add the icing sugar and the milk powder and cook 5 min/100C/speed 3. Repeat several times until the mixture releases oil.
  3. Tip out and reserve.
  4. Put the 150g chocolate in the bowl and melt 5 min/50C/speed 2.
  5. Add the almond powder to the chocolate and mix 20 sec/speed 3. It should be quite thick (as in picture) and will thicken as it cools down.
  6. Tip out and reserve.
  7. Now, onto the chocolate cases. We are going to temper the chocolate. First we set the chocolate at about 38C, then we use the unmelted chocolate to add crystals to the mixture and cool down the chocolate to about 25C. Finally, we need to raise the temperature to about 30C to completely temper the chocolate. Why temper the chocolate you may ask? This is to have a beautiful shine on your chocolates and avoid white streaks, which would not look good.
  8. Melt the chocolate in the TM bowl for 3 min/50C/speed 2. There will be bits of chocolates not melted so continue mixing without heat for 2 minutes until all the chocolate is melted and the mixture has cooled down a little (if you have a thermometer, you can check that it is down to 25C)
  9. Heat again the chocolate for 2 min/37C/speed 2. It is now ready to pour into the silicone moulds. Fill the moulds completely, tap the mould a few times to remove air bubbles, then empty the content back into the bowl.
  10. Most of the chocolate will fall back in the bowl but there will be enough to coat the inside of the mould.
  11. Scrape out the excess and let the chocolate rest upside-down onto a grid resting on parchment paper to let the excess drip
  12. Set the chocolate in the fridge for 10 minutes (see picture)
  13. Fill the moulds with a nut size praline mixture and pour the rest of the chocolate on top.
  14. Scrape out the excess and set again in the fridge
  15. When the chocolate is well set, unmould.

 

Butter caramel chocolates

Makes 30 chocolates

Ingredients

200g dark chocolate (55% cocoa)
1 pot of butter caramel

Method

  1. Melt the chocolate in the TM bowl for 3 min/50C/speed 2. There will be bits of chocolates not melted so continue mixing without heat for 2 minutes until all the chocolate is melted and cool down the mixture
  2. Heat again the chocolate for 2 min/37C/speed 2. It is now ready to pour into the silicone moulds. Fill the moulds completely, tap the mould a few times to remove air bubbles, then empty the content back into the bowl.
  3. Most of the chocolate will fall back in the bowl but there will be enough to coat the inside of the mould.
  4. Scrape out the excess and let the chocolate rest upside-down onto a grid resting on parchment paper to let the excess drip
  5. Set the chocolate in the fridge for 10 minutes
  6. Fill the mould with the butter caramel and pour the rest of the chocolate on top (see picture).
  7. Scrape out the excess and set again in the fridge
  8. When the chocolate is well set, unmould.

Note: if you have leftover chocolate, you can use less deep silicone moulds to make “friture”, which are just plain chocolates in different shapes as pictured