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Chocolatier Will Torrent’s Chocolate Pud

Steamed chocolate pudding & custard – Serves 6

  • Chocolatier Will Torrent’s Chocolate Pud
    YOU’LL NEED
      • 175 g unsalted butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
      • 100 g soft light brown sugar
      • 75 g caster sugar
      • 3 large eggs
      • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
      • 150 g self-raising flour
      • 50 g cocoa powder
      • a pinch of salt
      • 3 tablespoons milk
    CUSTARD SAUCE
      • 600 ml whole milk
      • 1 vanilla pod, split
      • 5 large egg yolks
      • 100 g caster sugar
      • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
      • 50 g dark chocolate, finely chopped
      • a 11⁄4-litre/40-oz. pudding basin, greased
    Single quantity
      • 200 ml whipping cream
      • a pinch of salt
      • 200 g chopped milk chocolate
      • 200 g chopped dark chocolate
      • 30 g unsalted butter
      1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream the butter together with both sugars until pale and light, scraping down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula from time to time. Gradually add the eggs, mixing well between each addition. Add the vanilla and mix again.

      2. Sift the flour, cocoa powder and salt into the bowl, add the milk and mix until smooth. Spoon the batter into the prepared pudding basin and spread level. Cover the top of the pudding with pleated sheets of buttered baking parchment and then foil – this allows room for the pudding to rise as it cooks. Tie the foil and paper securely under the lip of the pudding basin and trim off any excess paper leaving a frill of 2 cm/3⁄4 inch. Fold this frill back on itself so that it sits on top of the covered pudding and won’t hang in the pan water.

      3. Bring a large saucepan or pot of water to a simmer over a medium heat and lower the pudding into it. The water should come halfway up the side of the basin. Cover with a lid and steam for 11⁄2–13⁄4 hours, until cooked through and well risen. You may need to top up the water after an hour.

      Remove the steamed pudding from the pan and set aside to cool slightly.

    CUSTARD SAUCE
      1. To make the custard sauce, pour the milk into a saucepan or pot set over a medium heat. Add the split vanilla pod, then bring the mixture slowly to the boil. Remove the pan from the heat and set aside for about 20 minutes for the vanilla to fully infuse the milk.

      2. In a separate bowl, beat the egg yolks, sugar and cocoa powder together until pale and creamy. Reheat the milk and pour onto the egg mixture, whisking constantly until smooth. Pour the custard back into the pan and put over a low heat. Stirring constantly, cook until the custard is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Add the chopped chocolate and whisk until melted and thoroughly combined.

      3. Remove the baking parchment and foil lid from the steamed pudding, place a serving plate over the top and turn out.

      4. Strain the custard into a jug and serve poured over the top of the hot pudding.

    MELTING

      Melting is a really important process in the making of chocolates. If melting chocolate to temper with then it is often best to melt it in the microwave on a low heat, although you must take great care when doing so as it can easily burn and spoil. Some people melt chocolate in a bain-marie by setting a heatproof bowl over a saucepan or pot of simmering water. This is fine when you’re making brownies and have butter in with the chocolate, but when melting chocolate for tempering, a bain-marie is not a good idea. If water splashes into the melting chocolate it will seize up, and it can also be affected by the steam. So, for me, always melt in the microwave.

      Put the chocolate in a heatproof bowl and heat in the microwave in bursts of 30 seconds. Chocolate burns very easily so make sure you clean the sides of the bowl down after each burst of heat.

      Before tempering, make sure the chocolate is all melted and that you don’t have any lumps left in.

    TEMPERING

      You may have heard this term banded around by chefs and chocolatiers and not have a clue what it means. Without going into the science of re-crystallizing the crystals in the cocoa butter, it’s basically the way the chocolate becomes shiny and glossy, and hardens with a crisp snap, not soft or bloomed. ‘Blooming’ is when the cocoa butter re-crystallizes on the surface of the chocolate often leaving a white residue. These steps are for tempering dark/bittersweet chocolate. For milk or white, the technique is exactly the same but the temperatures are slightly different.

      My preferred method of tempering is to use a marble slab, palette knife, scraper and an electric probe. It’s important to say at this point to either use chocolate in button or callet form, or from a bar, chopped up finely – this will help melt the chocolate easier.

      Tempering on the marble is the method I have used since I began working with chocolate and is my preferred method. However, there are other methods that are simpler and easy to master so try the one that appeals to you most.

    THE ‘MARBLE’ TECHNIQUE

      Melt the chocolate pieces, buttons (callets) to 45°C (110°F) for 30-second bursts in the microwave on a low heat.

      Pour out two thirds of the chocolate onto the clean, marble slab – it must be completely dry as any moisture on the marble will cause the chocolate to seize up.

      Begin to spread the chocolate thinly across the marble using a palette knife. This applies a shearing force to the chocolate, which along with temperature, is also critical to the tempering process.

      Bring the spread chocolate back together using a scraper, keep it moving and continue to shear and cool the chocolate.

      Continue to do so until the chocolate starts to thicken – you will see peaks form when the chocolate is dropped from the spatula. The cocoa butter within the chocolate is beginning to crystallize and the cooled mass should be 25°C (50°F).

      Working quickly, place the thickened, crystallized chocolate into the remaining chocolate in the bowl and stir thoroughly until the chocolate is smooth again, taking care to stir out any lumps.

      For dark chocolate, it should now be 32°C (90°F) and will be perfectly tempered. Milk chocolate should be 29°C (85°F) and white should be 30°C (86°F).

      To make sure the chocolate is well tempered (and it’s always best to make sure), dip a little bit of torn baking parchment into the chocolate and place on your work surface to set a little. It should set hard within a few minutes at an ambient temperature.

      The chocolate is now ready to use for moulding, dipping and decorating. Remember to work quickly and confidently with it to avoid further re-crystallization at room temperature.

    THE ‘SEEDING’ TECHNIQUE (or adding more chocolate)

      This is a good way to start your journey of mastering the art of tempering chocolate.

      Weigh out the total amount of chocolate you need for the recipe, then remove one third of it and set aside. Melt the remaining two thirds of chocolate for 30-second bursts in the microwave on a low heat to 45°C (110°F). Then stir through the third you have reserved. Because the unmelted chocolate is already tempered, by adding it to the melted chocolate 45°C (110°F), you are stirring in the crystallized cocoa butter that you need to complete the tempering process.

      Continue to stir until all the chocolate has melted.

      Check the temperature of the chocolate. For dark chocolate, it should now be 32°C (90°F) and will be perfectly tempered. Milk chocolate should be 29°C (85°F) and white should be 30°C (86°F).

    TEMPERING IN THE MICROWAVE

      For small batches of chocolate, tempering in the microwave is best as it’s so quick and doesn’t make as much mess. Just like how we melted the chocolate for the marble technique, warm the chocolate for 30-second bursts in the microwave on a low heat, stirring between bursts.

      It is important not to heat the chocolate too quickly as you want to crystallize the cocoa butter slowly, so reduce your microwave power to its lowest heat setting.

      Once the chocolate is three quarters melted, stop heating. Stir the chocolate instead until all the remaining lumps have melted. Just like the marble method be sure to check the chocolate is tempered by dipping a little bit of torn baking parchment into the chocolate and place on your work surface to set a little. It should set within a few minutes.

      The chocolate is now ready to use. Remember to work quickly and confidently with it.

    MOULDING

      Chocolatiers have always used specially made moulds to create their wonderful concoctions. They used to be made from metal, but are now more commonly made from polycarbonate plastic. You can buy these polycarbonate moulds in lots of different shapes and sizes from various stores and websites.

      It’s important that the moulds are totally clean and don’t have any water near them, as any moisture will cause the chocolate to seize up. The easiest way to dry them after cleaning, is to blast them with a heat gun or hair dryer on a hot setting and wipe dry with a little cotton wool. Do not use paper towels or dish cloths as their fibres are too coarse and may scuff the moulds. Any small imperfection in the mould will transfer to the chocolates and you will not achieve the clean, shiny effect you want from these moulds.

      Once the chocolate has been tempered following the instructions above, spoon or pour the chocolate into your chosen mould.

      Working quickly, tip the mould to spread the chocolate, tapping the mould against the work surface to bash out any air bubbles that may be in the base of the mould.

      Hold the mould upside down and, using a scraper, tap the sides of the mould to knock any excess chocolate out.

      With the mould still upturned, scrape the surface of the mould to clean off the excess chocolate from around the sides, facing the table.

      Lay the mould face down on a baking sheet lined with greaseproof paper and set aside to firm up. Do not set the chocolate-lined mould in the fridge as this will shock the chocolate too much and may rush the crystallization process.

      Once the chocolate has set, you can then fill the moulds with your filling.

      Allow the filling to set at room temperature or in a cool, dark place then pour some remaining tempered chocolate over the top.

      Scrape any excess chocolate over the rest of the mould – this is known as ‘capping off’ – to seal the truffle. Set at room temperature until completely cold. Don’t be tempted to chill in the fridge as this will alter the temperature too quickly and cause blooming.

      Turn the mould upside down so that the bottoms of the chocolate face the work surface and tap the base of the mould down hard to release the chocolates.

      If you have cleaned the mould and tempered the chocolate correctly, the chocolates should contract once set making the truffles easy to pop out.

      For best results, and if you don’t want to get fingerprints on your nice shiny chocolates, wear cotton gloves when removing them from their moulds and transferring them onto a serving plate or into a gift box.

    DIPPING

      Dipping chocolates, jellies and pralines is an age-old tradition for chocolatiers. It’s all about immersing the ganache or other filling into the tempered chocolate and taking off as much of the chocolate as you can. You don’t want a thick outer case – the thinner you get it, the more professional your chocolates will look. I use a dipping fork, which you can buy online or from specialist kitchen suppliers, or you can simply use a normal kitchen fork. Make sure you have a baking sheet lined with baking parchment prepared to transfer your dipped chocolates.

      Start by placing the bowl of tempered chocolate (see above) onto a kitchen cloth and tip the bowl at an angle towards yourself – you don’t want it overflowing, but it will help take some of the chocolate off later in the process. Dip the truffle into the tempered chocolate using a dipping fork, covering it completely.

      Dip a couple of times then pull the truffle out of the bowl quickly to remove some of the excess coating.

      Using the side of the bowl, bounce the truffle (on the fork) into the top of the chocolate. This will help pull down the chocolate from the top, leaving you with a thin coating all the way round the chocolate.

      Pull the fork towards you against the bowl to take off the excess on the bottom of the truffle.

      Carefully tap the truffle onto the prepared baking sheet. If the truffle sticks to the fork, use a small sharp knife to lift it off. This takes a lot of practice so take your time.

      To create the rippled effect on top of the truffles, place the fork into the top of the chocolate, pull up and drag the fork away. Again, this takes practice and I often dip once, then again to achieve a more pronounced ripple.

    GANACHE

      A ganache is most commonly referred to as a truffle filling. It is a rich, decadent set chocolate made with cream that can be used to make sauces and desserts, cover cakes and fill chocolates. The method is simple but the mixture can split or become temperamental, so it’s about getting the quantities, temperatures and methods right. A ganache is an emulsification, such as mayonnaise where you want to emulsify fat and water, here, you want to make the cocoa butter and the fat in the cream come together to form a smooth ganache.

      If the mixture does split, add a dash of cold milk and this should bring it back together. Don’t boil the cream too much as this will cause trouble. You can substitute the dairy with nut and soy milks, or with fruit pureés or even water. Put the cream in a saucepan or pot set over a low–medium heat and slowly bring to the boil. Immediately remove from the heat and set aside to cool for a few minutes.

      Pour the cream over the chocolate and set aside for 30 seconds to allow the chocolate to melt in the heat of the hot cream.

      Gently mix the ingredients using a handheld electric mixer or a spatula in a tight circular motion in the centre of the bowl, until the chocolate starts to melt and emulsify with the cream. Gradually widen the circle until all the chocolate has melted and you have a shiny, smooth ganache.

      Once emulsified, stir with a spatula to make sure there are no lumps and all the cream and chocolate have been incorporated. You’ll then be left with a shiny, rich, velvety truffle ganache.

      Set aside to cool at room temperature for 3–4 hours before using. If still warm, the ganache may melt the tempered chocolate cases or truffle spheres.

      You can add flavourings such as hazelnut purée and vanilla to this basic ganache recipe to better suit the flavours of your chosen chocolates, bakes or desserts. Some recipes within this book call for a slightly tweaked ganache.

    Makes about 600g

      A ganache is most commonly referred to as a truffle filling. It is a rich, decadent set chocolate made with cream that can be used to make sauces and desserts, cover cakes and fill chocolates. The method is simple but the mixture can split or become temperamental, so it’s about getting the quantities, temperatures and methods right. A ganache is an emulsification, such as mayonnaise where you want to emulsify fat and water, here, you want to make the cocoa butter and the fat in the cream come together to form a smooth ganache.

      If the mixture does split, add a dash of cold milk and this should bring it back together. Don’t boil the cream too much as this will cause trouble. You can substitute the dairy with nut and soy milks, or with fruit pureés or even water. Put the cream in a saucepan or pot set over a low–medium heat and slowly bring to the boil. Immediately remove from the heat and set aside to cool for a few minutes.

      Pour the cream over the chocolate and set aside for 30 seconds to allow the chocolate to melt in the heat of the hot cream.

      Gently mix the ingredients using a handheld electric mixer or a spatula in a tight circular motion in the centre of the bowl, until the chocolate starts to melt and emulsify with the cream. Gradually widen the circle until all the chocolate has melted and you have a shiny, smooth ganache. Once emulsified, stir with a spatula to make sure there are no lumps and all the cream and chocolate have been incorporated. You’ll then be left with a shiny, rich, velvety truffle ganache.

      Set aside to cool at room temperature for 3–4 hours before using. If still warm, the ganache may melt the tempered chocolate cases or truffle spheres.

      You can add flavourings such as hazelnut purée and vanilla to this basic ganache recipe to better suit the flavours of your chosen chocolates, bakes or desserts. Some recipes within this book call for a slightly tweaked ganache.

      Buy Will’s book, ‘Chocolate at Home’ here!

     
     
    Chocolatier Will Torrent’s Chocolate Pud

    Steamed chocolate pudding & custard – Serves 6

    YOU’LL NEED
      • 175 g unsalted butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
      • 100 g soft light brown sugar
      • 75 g caster sugar
      • 3 large eggs
      • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
      • 150 g self-raising flour
      • 50 g cocoa powder
      • a pinch of salt
      • 3 tablespoons milk
    CUSTARD SAUCE
      • 600 ml whole milk
      • 1 vanilla pod, split
      • 5 large egg yolks
      • 100 g caster sugar
      • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
      • 50 g dark chocolate, finely chopped
      • a 11⁄4-litre/40-oz. pudding basin, greased
    Single quantity
      • 200 ml whipping cream
      • a pinch of salt
      • 200 g chopped milk chocolate
      • 200 g chopped dark chocolate
      • 30 g unsalted butter
      1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream the butter together with both sugars until pale and light, scraping down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula from time to time. Gradually add the eggs, mixing well between each addition. Add the vanilla and mix again.

      2. Sift the flour, cocoa powder and salt into the bowl, add the milk and mix until smooth. Spoon the batter into the prepared pudding basin and spread level. Cover the top of the pudding with pleated sheets of buttered baking parchment and then foil – this allows room for the pudding to rise as it cooks. Tie the foil and paper securely under the lip of the pudding basin and trim off any excess paper leaving a frill of 2 cm/3⁄4 inch. Fold this frill back on itself so that it sits on top of the covered pudding and won’t hang in the pan water.

      3. Bring a large saucepan or pot of water to a simmer over a medium heat and lower the pudding into it. The water should come halfway up the side of the basin. Cover with a lid and steam for 11⁄2–13⁄4 hours, until cooked through and well risen. You may need to top up the water after an hour.

      Remove the steamed pudding from the pan and set aside to cool slightly.

    CUSTARD SAUCE
      1. To make the custard sauce, pour the milk into a saucepan or pot set over a medium heat. Add the split vanilla pod, then bring the mixture slowly to the boil. Remove the pan from the heat and set aside for about 20 minutes for the vanilla to fully infuse the milk.

      2. In a separate bowl, beat the egg yolks, sugar and cocoa powder together until pale and creamy. Reheat the milk and pour onto the egg mixture, whisking constantly until smooth. Pour the custard back into the pan and put over a low heat. Stirring constantly, cook until the custard is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Add the chopped chocolate and whisk until melted and thoroughly combined.

      3. Remove the baking parchment and foil lid from the steamed pudding, place a serving plate over the top and turn out.

      4. Strain the custard into a jug and serve poured over the top of the hot pudding.

    MELTING

      Melting is a really important process in the making of chocolates. If melting chocolate to temper with then it is often best to melt it in the microwave on a low heat, although you must take great care when doing so as it can easily burn and spoil. Some people melt chocolate in a bain-marie by setting a heatproof bowl over a saucepan or pot of simmering water. This is fine when you’re making brownies and have butter in with the chocolate, but when melting chocolate for tempering, a bain-marie is not a good idea. If water splashes into the melting chocolate it will seize up, and it can also be affected by the steam. So, for me, always melt in the microwave.

      Put the chocolate in a heatproof bowl and heat in the microwave in bursts of 30 seconds. Chocolate burns very easily so make sure you clean the sides of the bowl down after each burst of heat.

      Before tempering, make sure the chocolate is all melted and that you don’t have any lumps left in.

    TEMPERING

      You may have heard this term banded around by chefs and chocolatiers and not have a clue what it means. Without going into the science of re-crystallizing the crystals in the cocoa butter, it’s basically the way the chocolate becomes shiny and glossy, and hardens with a crisp snap, not soft or bloomed. ‘Blooming’ is when the cocoa butter re-crystallizes on the surface of the chocolate often leaving a white residue. These steps are for tempering dark/bittersweet chocolate. For milk or white, the technique is exactly the same but the temperatures are slightly different.

      My preferred method of tempering is to use a marble slab, palette knife, scraper and an electric probe. It’s important to say at this point to either use chocolate in button or callet form, or from a bar, chopped up finely – this will help melt the chocolate easier.

      Tempering on the marble is the method I have used since I began working with chocolate and is my preferred method. However, there are other methods that are simpler and easy to master so try the one that appeals to you most.

    THE ‘MARBLE’ TECHNIQUE

      Melt the chocolate pieces, buttons (callets) to 45°C (110°F) for 30-second bursts in the microwave on a low heat.

      Pour out two thirds of the chocolate onto the clean, marble slab – it must be completely dry as any moisture on the marble will cause the chocolate to seize up.

      Begin to spread the chocolate thinly across the marble using a palette knife. This applies a shearing force to the chocolate, which along with temperature, is also critical to the tempering process.

      Bring the spread chocolate back together using a scraper, keep it moving and continue to shear and cool the chocolate.

      Continue to do so until the chocolate starts to thicken – you will see peaks form when the chocolate is dropped from the spatula. The cocoa butter within the chocolate is beginning to crystallize and the cooled mass should be 25°C (50°F).

      Working quickly, place the thickened, crystallized chocolate into the remaining chocolate in the bowl and stir thoroughly until the chocolate is smooth again, taking care to stir out any lumps.

      For dark chocolate, it should now be 32°C (90°F) and will be perfectly tempered. Milk chocolate should be 29°C (85°F) and white should be 30°C (86°F).

      To make sure the chocolate is well tempered (and it’s always best to make sure), dip a little bit of torn baking parchment into the chocolate and place on your work surface to set a little. It should set hard within a few minutes at an ambient temperature.

      The chocolate is now ready to use for moulding, dipping and decorating. Remember to work quickly and confidently with it to avoid further re-crystallization at room temperature.

    THE ‘SEEDING’ TECHNIQUE (or adding more chocolate)

      This is a good way to start your journey of mastering the art of tempering chocolate.

      Weigh out the total amount of chocolate you need for the recipe, then remove one third of it and set aside. Melt the remaining two thirds of chocolate for 30-second bursts in the microwave on a low heat to 45°C (110°F). Then stir through the third you have reserved. Because the unmelted chocolate is already tempered, by adding it to the melted chocolate 45°C (110°F), you are stirring in the crystallized cocoa butter that you need to complete the tempering process.

      Continue to stir until all the chocolate has melted.

      Check the temperature of the chocolate. For dark chocolate, it should now be 32°C (90°F) and will be perfectly tempered. Milk chocolate should be 29°C (85°F) and white should be 30°C (86°F).

    TEMPERING IN THE MICROWAVE

      For small batches of chocolate, tempering in the microwave is best as it’s so quick and doesn’t make as much mess. Just like how we melted the chocolate for the marble technique, warm the chocolate for 30-second bursts in the microwave on a low heat, stirring between bursts.

      It is important not to heat the chocolate too quickly as you want to crystallize the cocoa butter slowly, so reduce your microwave power to its lowest heat setting.

      Once the chocolate is three quarters melted, stop heating. Stir the chocolate instead until all the remaining lumps have melted. Just like the marble method be sure to check the chocolate is tempered by dipping a little bit of torn baking parchment into the chocolate and place on your work surface to set a little. It should set within a few minutes.

      The chocolate is now ready to use. Remember to work quickly and confidently with it.

    MOULDING

      Chocolatiers have always used specially made moulds to create their wonderful concoctions. They used to be made from metal, but are now more commonly made from polycarbonate plastic. You can buy these polycarbonate moulds in lots of different shapes and sizes from various stores and websites.

      It’s important that the moulds are totally clean and don’t have any water near them, as any moisture will cause the chocolate to seize up. The easiest way to dry them after cleaning, is to blast them with a heat gun or hair dryer on a hot setting and wipe dry with a little cotton wool. Do not use paper towels or dish cloths as their fibres are too coarse and may scuff the moulds. Any small imperfection in the mould will transfer to the chocolates and you will not achieve the clean, shiny effect you want from these moulds.

      Once the chocolate has been tempered following the instructions above, spoon or pour the chocolate into your chosen mould.

      Working quickly, tip the mould to spread the chocolate, tapping the mould against the work surface to bash out any air bubbles that may be in the base of the mould.

      Hold the mould upside down and, using a scraper, tap the sides of the mould to knock any excess chocolate out.

      With the mould still upturned, scrape the surface of the mould to clean off the excess chocolate from around the sides, facing the table.

      Lay the mould face down on a baking sheet lined with greaseproof paper and set aside to firm up. Do not set the chocolate-lined mould in the fridge as this will shock the chocolate too much and may rush the crystallization process.

      Once the chocolate has set, you can then fill the moulds with your filling.

      Allow the filling to set at room temperature or in a cool, dark place then pour some remaining tempered chocolate over the top.

      Scrape any excess chocolate over the rest of the mould – this is known as ‘capping off’ – to seal the truffle. Set at room temperature until completely cold. Don’t be tempted to chill in the fridge as this will alter the temperature too quickly and cause blooming.

      Turn the mould upside down so that the bottoms of the chocolate face the work surface and tap the base of the mould down hard to release the chocolates.

      If you have cleaned the mould and tempered the chocolate correctly, the chocolates should contract once set making the truffles easy to pop out.

      For best results, and if you don’t want to get fingerprints on your nice shiny chocolates, wear cotton gloves when removing them from their moulds and transferring them onto a serving plate or into a gift box.

    DIPPING

      Dipping chocolates, jellies and pralines is an age-old tradition for chocolatiers. It’s all about immersing the ganache or other filling into the tempered chocolate and taking off as much of the chocolate as you can. You don’t want a thick outer case – the thinner you get it, the more professional your chocolates will look. I use a dipping fork, which you can buy online or from specialist kitchen suppliers, or you can simply use a normal kitchen fork. Make sure you have a baking sheet lined with baking parchment prepared to transfer your dipped chocolates.

      Start by placing the bowl of tempered chocolate (see above) onto a kitchen cloth and tip the bowl at an angle towards yourself – you don’t want it overflowing, but it will help take some of the chocolate off later in the process. Dip the truffle into the tempered chocolate using a dipping fork, covering it completely.

      Dip a couple of times then pull the truffle out of the bowl quickly to remove some of the excess coating.

      Using the side of the bowl, bounce the truffle (on the fork) into the top of the chocolate. This will help pull down the chocolate from the top, leaving you with a thin coating all the way round the chocolate.

      Pull the fork towards you against the bowl to take off the excess on the bottom of the truffle.

      Carefully tap the truffle onto the prepared baking sheet. If the truffle sticks to the fork, use a small sharp knife to lift it off. This takes a lot of practice so take your time.

      To create the rippled effect on top of the truffles, place the fork into the top of the chocolate, pull up and drag the fork away. Again, this takes practice and I often dip once, then again to achieve a more pronounced ripple.

    GANACHE

      A ganache is most commonly referred to as a truffle filling. It is a rich, decadent set chocolate made with cream that can be used to make sauces and desserts, cover cakes and fill chocolates. The method is simple but the mixture can split or become temperamental, so it’s about getting the quantities, temperatures and methods right. A ganache is an emulsification, such as mayonnaise where you want to emulsify fat and water, here, you want to make the cocoa butter and the fat in the cream come together to form a smooth ganache.

      If the mixture does split, add a dash of cold milk and this should bring it back together. Don’t boil the cream too much as this will cause trouble. You can substitute the dairy with nut and soy milks, or with fruit pureés or even water. Put the cream in a saucepan or pot set over a low–medium heat and slowly bring to the boil. Immediately remove from the heat and set aside to cool for a few minutes.

      Pour the cream over the chocolate and set aside for 30 seconds to allow the chocolate to melt in the heat of the hot cream.

      Gently mix the ingredients using a handheld electric mixer or a spatula in a tight circular motion in the centre of the bowl, until the chocolate starts to melt and emulsify with the cream. Gradually widen the circle until all the chocolate has melted and you have a shiny, smooth ganache.

      Once emulsified, stir with a spatula to make sure there are no lumps and all the cream and chocolate have been incorporated. You’ll then be left with a shiny, rich, velvety truffle ganache.

      Set aside to cool at room temperature for 3–4 hours before using. If still warm, the ganache may melt the tempered chocolate cases or truffle spheres.

      You can add flavourings such as hazelnut purée and vanilla to this basic ganache recipe to better suit the flavours of your chosen chocolates, bakes or desserts. Some recipes within this book call for a slightly tweaked ganache.

    Makes about 600g

      A ganache is most commonly referred to as a truffle filling. It is a rich, decadent set chocolate made with cream that can be used to make sauces and desserts, cover cakes and fill chocolates. The method is simple but the mixture can split or become temperamental, so it’s about getting the quantities, temperatures and methods right. A ganache is an emulsification, such as mayonnaise where you want to emulsify fat and water, here, you want to make the cocoa butter and the fat in the cream come together to form a smooth ganache.

      If the mixture does split, add a dash of cold milk and this should bring it back together. Don’t boil the cream too much as this will cause trouble. You can substitute the dairy with nut and soy milks, or with fruit pureés or even water. Put the cream in a saucepan or pot set over a low–medium heat and slowly bring to the boil. Immediately remove from the heat and set aside to cool for a few minutes.

      Pour the cream over the chocolate and set aside for 30 seconds to allow the chocolate to melt in the heat of the hot cream.

      Gently mix the ingredients using a handheld electric mixer or a spatula in a tight circular motion in the centre of the bowl, until the chocolate starts to melt and emulsify with the cream. Gradually widen the circle until all the chocolate has melted and you have a shiny, smooth ganache. Once emulsified, stir with a spatula to make sure there are no lumps and all the cream and chocolate have been incorporated. You’ll then be left with a shiny, rich, velvety truffle ganache.

      Set aside to cool at room temperature for 3–4 hours before using. If still warm, the ganache may melt the tempered chocolate cases or truffle spheres.

      You can add flavourings such as hazelnut purée and vanilla to this basic ganache recipe to better suit the flavours of your chosen chocolates, bakes or desserts. Some recipes within this book call for a slightly tweaked ganache.

      Buy Will’s book, ‘Chocolate at Home’ here!