This post was meant to come to you a few weeks ago after I spent a Saturday morning at Rococo Chocolates’ School of Chocolate in Motcomb Street.
A small but perfectly formed group of 5 ladies gathered together to learn the art of tempering Chocolate with Rococo’s ‘Prof du Choc’, Laurent Couchaux.
Who knew that melting chocolate was such a science? Without wishing to bore you – because this all fascinates me – chocolate is made up of 6 individual crystals, each with a different melting point, which means that the process of melting chocolate correctly (tempering) has to be done in stages. When this process is followed correctly, chocolate can be melted and re-set many times without losing its texture.
The process of tempering (which is super precise and has to be done with a thermometer and everything – making me feel like a proper scientist!): the chocolate is heated to a high temperature, then stirred until the temperature reduces. The whole bowl of melted chocolate is then poured out onto a marble slab and almost paddled to reduce the temperature still further.
The chocolate then goes back into the bowl and a small quantity of hot melted chocolate is added to the mix, which is then stirred to reach the magical working temperature. It is a lengthy process but you have to work fast to avoid missing the important temperatures!
Then the fun bit… we were given a piping bag, the famous Rococo fish moulds, and a sheet of acetate.
I made 8 yummy fish, some dark chocolate and rose wafers (like really thin chocolate buttons), some chocolate buttons (because I am an overgrown 6 year old at heart), some random shapes, and I even managed to write my name in chocolate! Oh and I had a bash at the Restoration crown too!
You can find the Rococo School of Chocolate course guide here: http://rococochocolates.com/chocolate-school My 3 hour class cost £100 and included all materials, a chocolate tasting, and all my lovely chocolates to take home! I cannot recommend this enough.