Publisher: Absolute Press
Chocolate! It has to be the most love little indulgences in the world. Just thinking about it, I taste in my mind the smooth taste that is like nothing else. The nearest thing I can think of is proper turkish coffee for giving you a similar buzz. I love the taste of chocolate, but I am a mere amature compared to my wife, whom, with almost every woman I have known, has a natural affinity with the stuff.
So, setting the expectation high for this book, I divided into the forward. In it, you are taken on a journey through the history of the co-operative that grows their own cocoa plants, formed their own Fiartrade Chocolate company and now account for 1% of the World's cocoa production. Not bad for a group of farmers that formed their company in 1993 in Ghana. After your Divine history lesson, it is then time for practical advice on Storing Chocolate, Chopping Chocolate, Melting Chocolate, Microwaving, Piped Decorations, Chocolate Cups, Chocolate Waves, Chocolate Shavings, Chocolate Bark and, finally, Almond Bark. Yes there is a lot of things covered, but these hints and tips will help you learn how to cook with chocolate.
The chocolate recipes, of which there is over a hundred, are divided into 9 chapters, covering: Biscuits and Cookies, Brownies, Cakes, Desserts, Cheesecakes, Mousses, Ice-creams, Savoury and Drinks and Dips. There are plenty of recipes for you to try, and they range from easy to moderate on complexity. So, if you have never cooked with chocolate before, here is the ideal introduction to the very rewarding cookery style.
To tempt you, I have selected a few recipes from the book. The first is Divine Dark and White Pinwheel Biscuits. To me, these biscuits are just the thing when it is cold. They are great with a cup of tea. Next, I love the Red Hot Chilli-Pepper Chocolate Cake recipe. The recipe benefits from that extra kick that chilli gives chocolate. Finally, I have selected something from the Savoury range of recipes, being Cocoa-Dusted Scallops with Tagliarelle and Rocket. With so many great recipes, Linda Collister's book is a worthwhile investment for anyone wanting to extend their repertoire of chocolate based dishes.