If you’ve been here before, you know I’m a chocoholic and you may have even seen my first attempt at making my own chocolate (the second try over here). When I did that, I had no recipe to follow – I tried to find some info online, but it was rather conflicting and very confusing, and I didn’t know who to trust, so I just proceeded with the good old trial and error (or taste and mix) method.
But now I’ve found this book, Chocolate Making Adventures. The ebook happened to be free on Amazon, so I quickly grabbed it. Now that I’ve had a good look at it, I can say that this is the book I’m going to turn to when I need help with chocolate making.
The author starts by explaining the ingredients you need for making chocolate. This is a very useful section, because you learn the differences between, e.g. various sweeteners you can use. There’s a section about the tools and equipment you need, and the methods are explained thoroughly. Instructions range from how long you can store home-made chocolate to how to attractively package and/or gift wrap them. There’s an appendix with conversion charts (very useful!) and another about troubleshooting. The instructions are clear, easy to follow, there’s a bit of humour while the author clearly knows what she’s talking about. And the recipes! Such intriguing flavour combinations that you can’t wait to try them... plus things like truffles, pralines, fondant eggs etc. What’s more, the recipes are also inspiring: I started coming up with my own ideas for flavour combinations. Oh, and there are gorgeous pictures!
I haven’t tried any of the recipes yet, but I’m particularly interested in those for home-made milk chocolate. So far, I’ve only made basic dark chocolate (with dried fruit and nuts). While that’s delicious, I’d love to see how milk chocolate turns out! However, I’ve only made the simple sort of chocolate where you just melt the cocoa butter, add the other ingredients, and pour the chocolate into molds to set. The instructions in this book include the method of heating the chocolate, cooling it (by working it on a slab with a scraper) and again heating it. I’ve always been intimidated by the idea of this complex process, and I don’t even have the equipment and tools needed for it. However, I’d like to try that some day, and then I’ll definitely turn to this book for advice.
Chocolate Making Adventures is a great info package, much more than I ever imagine I’d get from an ebook. The author also has a blog where you can find some recipes, beautiful pictures (oooh, chocolate porn!) and even links to where to buy ingredients for chocolate making. If you want to try making delicious chocolate treats but don’t know where to start, or if you want to learn more about the art of chocolate making, I’d recommend this book.