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the appetizer:

Jacques Torres' A Year in Chocolate by chocolatier Jacques Torres, features tantalizing recipes like Chocolate-Covered Fortune Cookies; Molded Chocolate Bunny; and Pumpkin Chocolate Cake.

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Molded Chocolate Bunny

One 12-inch bunny

Molded Chocolate Bunny

 

To create a successful molded figure, you must use tempered chocolate to ensure a smooth, snappy finish. Making the mold is rather like working with plaster except that chocolate is far messier! Antique metal molds are absolutely beautiful but not terribly effective, as the hardened chocolate will stick to the metal mold and crumble as you try to remove it. The best types of molds are plastic or polycarbonate. As they are the most reliable, I work with modern plastic molds and I strongly recommend that you do also. Just remember that the temperature of your kitchen will affect the speed at which the chocolate sets.

Plastic molds usually come in two equal parts, which must be united before filling with chocolate. I suggest that you clip the two parts together using small steel binder clips (available from all office supply stores). You can tape the parts together with heatproof tape, but the clips are much more efficient.

If this is your first attempt at making a molded figure, I suggest that you make a simple chocolate bunny without the painted trim.

  • 4 ounces cocoa butter (optional)
  • Food coloring powder (optional)
  • 2 pounds bittersweet chocolate, tempered

If you are going to paint the bunny's face and other elements, decide on the colors you are going to use and then divide the cocoa butter into the number of colors selected. Place the cocoa butter in a yogurt maker (see page 17 of the book) or individual stainless-steel bowls, using enough cocoa butter to keep it liquid, work the coloring powder into each one, and then, using a small paint brush, carefully paint the features directly onto the interior of the mold as directed on page 17. Allow the cocoa butter to set for about 30 minutes, then proceed with the recipe. If you don't have the time or energy to make the cocoa butter colors, simply paint the face with tempered milk or white chocolate.

Place a wire rack on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Set aside. Place the tempered chocolate in a warmed bowl.

Clip the two parts of the mold together. Then, holding the mold upside down, pour the tempered chocolate into the mold. "When it is full, immediately empty it back into the same bowl. The mold should be evenly coated with anywhere from 1/16 to 1/8 inch of chocolate. Tap the edge of the mold to release any air bubbles that might remain in the chocolate, to ensure a perfectly smooth coating. Wipe the edge of the mold clean on the edge of the bowl (you don't want to waste a drop of chocolate) and place the mold, open end down, on the wire rack. Let stand for about 5 minutes, or until the chocolate has begun to set.

Once the chocolate hardens, using a paring knife, scrape the open end of the mold clean.

As the chocolate hardens, it will retract from the mold, and the clean edge helps prevent the chocolate from sticking and cracking as its shrinks. (If your kitchen is warm, place the mold in the refrigerator for a couple of minutes to facilitate hardening.)

Repeat this process 2 more times, allowing the chocolate to thoroughly harden between pourings, to give a nice thick, child-friendly coating of chocolate.

Once the chocolate has set, unclip the mold and lift the plastic from the chocolate form. If desired, wrap in cellophane and store in a cool, dry spot for up to 5 days.

 
  • from:
    Jacques Torres' A Year in Chocolate
    80 Recipes for Holidays and Special Occasions
  • by Jacques Torres
  • Photographs by Steve Pool
  • Stewart, Tabori & Chang 2008
  • 208 pages; $35.00 U.S.; $39.00 Canada
  • ISBN: 1584796421
  • ISBN-13: 978-1-58479-642-8
  • Recipe reprinted by permission.

Buy Jacques Torres' A Year in Chocolate

 

Jacques Torres' A Year in Chocolate

 
 
 
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This page created January 2009


 

 
 

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