Everything You Need to Know About Chocolate

This week is all about French cuisine, and maybe it’s just us, but the first thing that comes to mind is all the ways the French use chocolate. Chocolate pastries, chocolate candies, chocolate anything. The fall and winter entertaining season is also just around the corner, so we thought a roundup of all our best chocolate tips, techniques, and recipes was in order!

Bean to Bar: How Chocolate Is Made

• How Cacao Beans are Harvested and Dried
• How Cocoa Powder and Cocoa Butter are Made
• How Chocolate is Refined and Conched
• Discolored Chocolate: Is “Bloom” Good or Bad?
• Food Science: Why Chocolate Seizes
• Behind the Scenes with Taza Chocolate
• Expert Interview: Master Chocolate Maker Ray Major of Scharffen Berger

Chocolate In the Kitchen: How To Work with Chocolate

• The Best Way to Chop Chocolate: Use a Serrated Knife
• How to Melt Chocolate
• How to Temper Chocolate
• How to Drizzle Chocolate - the Squeeze Bottle Method and the Plastic Bag Method
• How to Substitute Chocolate Bars for Cocoa in Baking
• How to Make Ganache: Simple Melted Ganache and Whipped Ganache

Chocolate Temptations: More Ways To Eat Chocolate!

• Homemade Mallomars
• Chocolate Whiskey Pot de Crèmes
• Nigella Lawson’s Nutella Cake with Chocolate Hazelnut Ganache
Chocolate Bouchons from Thomas Keller
• The Best Chocolate Ice Cream

What other tips or questions do you have about working with chocolate? What are your very favorite recipes for this marvelous ingredient?

Related: An Online Source for Chocolate: Chocosphere

(Images: Dana Velden; Emma Christensen)

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