Salted Caramelised Almond Chocolates – We Should Cocoa #36
The wonderfully creative Elizabeth from her kitchen in Shetland is hosting this month’s We Should Cocoa and she has tasked us with making bite sized chocolates. Flavours are completely up to us. As it happened I’d been given some chocolate flower moulds with sticks as a birthday present from my mother and this seemed the perfect opportunity to try them out and make one of my favourites, almond chocolates.
I have found tempering small amounts of chocolate to be well nigh impossible. I am, however, always willing to keep trying to achieve that elusive Beta 5. Salted caramel continues to be my flavour of the moment, so that’s what I opted for, using some fleur de sel from Brittany. First I made some salted caramelised flaked almonds and then I used them to make salted caramelised almond chocolates. The idea was to make them in the shape of flowers with dark chocolate leaves and a white chocolate centre. I ended up with some some chocolate and nuts left over, so I made a few spoons as well. Why not?
I was hoping the salted caramelised almond chocolates would have a pretty white centre to them, but the dark chocolate covered most of the white chocolate buttons. This technique obviously had a few flaws. Next time, I will have to try melting some white chocolate into the bottom before adding the dark, though I’m not sure that would achieve the neat result I was looking for either. Beta 5 may have eluded me once again, but I felt I wasn’t far off – with the spoons at least.
Despite the chocolate flowers not looking quite as good as I’d hoped, I was still really pleased with them. They looked fun all stacked together in a vase and they tasted fantastic. These salted caramelised almond chocolates had a rich, strong flavour with a salty, nutty, crunchy heart. Eating them on sticks allowed the chocolates to be nibbled and savoured without getting a melted mess all over our hands. Whether you make them as flowers, spoons or something else entirely, these would make a wonderful gift.
- 1 tbsp flaked almonds
- 1 tsp sieved golden icing sugar
- pinch of fleur de sel
- 75g dark chocolate (I used G&B Cook's 72%) - chopped
- 9 white chocolate buttons (if making flowers)
- 9 flower moulds with sticks or chocolate moulds of choice
- Dry fry the almonds with the icing sugar and salt over a medium heat stirring all the while.
- After about 8 minutes, the sugar should have caramelised and the almonds turned golden. Remove from the heat and allow to cool, then roughly crush.
- Melt 60g of the chocolate over a pan of hot, but not boiling water, making sure the water doesn't touch the bowl. As soon as the chocolate had melted, remove from the heat and add the remaining 15g. Stir until melted.
- If making the flowers, lay a white chocolate button at the bottom of the flower moulds. Insert the sticks and top with a teaspoon of melted chocolate.
- Add some of the crushed caramelised nuts.
- Top with another teaspoon or so of melted chocolate until they are full. Bang the moulds on the surface to disperse any air bubbles and spread the chocolate into the corners.
- Leave to set.
- I made six flowers and used the remaining chocolate and some of the caramelised nuts to make three chocolate spoons.