For many, Easter is a time for over-indulging in chocolate and watching as the younger members of the family go in-search of those elusive treats left by the Bunny.
Whilst chocolate eggs are a great treat to tide you over the long weekend, creating a chocolate dessert is the perfect way to get your chocolate fix in one hit, and a great chance for the 'more mature' members of the family to enjoy something other than what the Easter Bunny leaves behind.
Angela Gallagher has provided her top tips for cooking with Chocolate this Easter.
- Time and Love: When cooking with chocolate, don't rush! Chocolate requires love and care when being cooked with, so to avoid creating a lumpy, burned mess, take your time and 'seduce' the chocolate by being gentle with it and not rushing the melting, tempering or sculpting process.
- A Pinch of Salt: Adding a pinch of salt to your chocolate enhances the flavour and helps reduce the bitterness of some chocolate. By reducing the slight bitter taste associated with dark chocolate, you experience a more rich, velvety, sweet chocolate - ideal for hot chocolate on a cold winter night.
- Mix and Match: Chocolate works well with almost anything. Don't be afraid to experiment by mixing chocolate with whatever you're cooking - bacon, caviar, ginger, chilli, cheese - chocolate is the perfect partner in crime for any ingredient!
- It's Getting Hot in Here: If you're cooking with chocolate, watch the heat! Chocolate has the tendency to burn easily, so make sure if you're melting chocolate, you keep an eye on your temperature gauge. There's nothing worse than char-flavoured dessert!
- Use as garnish: Chocolate is one of the most versatile products to cook with and can be used as both the staring role of a dessert, or as a decorative feature on your plate. Try dressing your dish by adding a different form of chocolate, like curls, dust or as a quenelle to accompany your dessert. Not only does this make the dish aesthetically appealing, but can also add another layer of texture to your sweet dessert.