Tuesday, 1 October 2013

Chocolate Tales @ The Mad Bean

Classic Chocolate Making Workshop with Chocolate Tales

Our Event Host and Chocolatier, Cocoa Janel
We started with a history of chocolate, in which Janel entertained us with cute and funny stories about the origins of chocolate and random facts. 
Next, she described what she was making with the heavy cream and chocolate ganache and she gave us 3 samples of chocolate mixed with "secret ingredients".

The first sample was sweet cinnamon chocolate. I found the flavour of the cinnamon chocolate was reminiscent of Christmas when it was folded into the chocolate. 
The second sample was a ginger chocolate ganache with quite a heavy punch of flavour. When the ganache was still warm, the ginger flavour was a little more subtle, but as it cooled, the ginger became more prominent.
Lastly, we tried the chili powder chocolate ganache which brought memories of Mexican cooking (tacos and burritos immediately come to mind). 

Next, Janel demonstrated the process of tempering chocolate and how to make chocolate (as well as the secret to Cadbury's Caramilk chocolate). She also explained things to watch out for when purchasing chocolate to make your own chocolates such as using couverture chocolate vs. other chocolates with substitutes like palm oil.

Then we got to decorating our chocolates, truffles and marshmallows: 

We were each given our own set of 4 cups: shredded coconut, warm molding chocolate (made by Janel), Marshmallows and cocoa powder. As well as the utensils, gloves and plastic aprons to make our chocolates.

Voila! The Fruits of our Efforts!
We used mini cookie cutters to make interesting chocolate shapes from the block of couvature chocolate Janel gave us. And we decorated the chocolates with the molding chocolate, coconut, cocoa powder and drizzled white chocolate on some of them. After that, the chocolates were taken to the freezer to be frozen.

Janel mentioned that she made chocolate lava cakes for us to decorate. So we happily got to doing that too:

Chocolate cake with white chocolate drizzle and coconut...mmmm

While we were waiting for our lava cakes to bake and our chocolates to freeze, we were introduced to different kinds of chocolates through some chocolate wafer samples. Chocolate from different regions around the world have different flavours which is due to botanical, geological and climate factors as well as local practices. It was demonstrated by the two sampled chocolates:
1) The one on the left is a Costa Rica chocolate with 64% cocoa content making it a dark chocolate. It had a strong and bitter taste with a hint of the woods and mushrooms.
2) The one on the right is a Venezuela chocolate with 43% cocoa content - milk chocolate. It was richer and creamier with a hint of caramel and nuts.

After the chocolate sampling, our chocolates and chocolate cake were ready to be taken home!

Moist chocolate cake - Yum!

Everyone got a box to pack their chocolates in and take them home.

Overall: The Classic Chocolate Making Workshop was a fun experience. Our event host was great and she was very engaging and entertained us with some great history, facts and stories about chocolate making. We learned a lot about chocolate in 90 minutes and we got some delicious goodies to take home. 

1 comment:

  1. I did the workshop this afternoon ... it was fun :)