Part 5: Choosing the Right Chocolate - Chocolate Pairing
We have come to the last second factor to consider when choosing the right chocolate for your creations: Chocolate Pairing.
Unless your dessert is purely made of chocolate, all other ingredients should be put into consideration while designing creation, also it will be good to decide on which is the primary ingredient and the secondary ingredients.
We had discuss extensively about the different types of chocolates available in Part 2 of our blog series. Hence I will go straight into some simple pairing combinations for each type of chocolate.
Dark Couvertures and Chocolates
Generally, dark chocolate are a perfect match with fruits that are sour and with acidic profiles such as Orange, Yuzu, Passionfruit and Raspberry. Some specific dark chocolate are also great when match with sweet and strong frontal flavour fruits like Banana, Cherry and Mango.
Dark chocolate are perfect with nuts like hazelnuts, almonds and macadamia as it is able to amplify the taste of nuts without losing its own unique taste profile.
Milk Chocolate matches very well with sweet and fragrant fruits that have slight acidity such as Mango and Apricot. Coconut are also commonly used with milk chocolate to bring out its creamy and rich taste.
Milk Chocolate is able to compliment well with most of the nuts including almond, pecan and peanuts. They are a heavenly match with peanuts and peanut butter, bringing out the best out of both ingredients.
Coffee, Tea and Spices
Milk chocolate that has lesser cocoa profile are suitable for coffee such as espresso and also tea like earl grey, jasmine, matcha and even Asian flavours such as thai milk tea.
Likewise, spices like Chai, Ginger and Star Anise are just some surprisingly good match with milk chocolate that are worth trying.
Fruits and Florals
White chocolate makes a good pair with intense acidity fruits such as lemon, orange, blueberry and pineapple due to its sweet flavour. Florals like rose and lavender are able to retain their unique floral flavours when used with white chocolate.
Tea & Spices
White chocolate are more suitable for tea with subtle and light flavours like jasmine and green tea. Spice like real vanilla (pods) and saffron are used with white chocolate to create fresh combination for desserts.
In summary, by understanding and applying the nature of each types of chocolate, we can easily find the matching ingredients to use for any dessert.
The pairing list above is just for reference as the possibilities are exhaustive and its up to you to play around and explore the different combinations.
Next week, in the last blog post of the “Choosing the Right Chocolate” blog series, I will be discussing with you how the different type of desserts affects the chocolate to be used.
Chef Jacques Poulain.