Chocolates from our bakery

IMG_1425

I was recently asked, “What’s a good holiday gift from King Arthur Flour?”

I hesitated. So many choices; but what’s universally appealing? Then it came to me – chocolates from our bakery. Give a box to your friends, and keep one for yourself!

Not convinced? Keep reading.

hands on chocolate

Brand new this season, King Arthur’s pastry chef and chocolatier, Wilhelm Wanders, and his team created an assortment of premium chocolates sold here in our Norwich, Vermont store, and on our Web site. Wilhelm is an 8th generation German master pastry chef, who owned a chocolate business in Virginia before relocating to Vermont. I recently asked Wilhelm about his chocolates.

cutting chocolate

AE: You’re a great pastry chef in addition to chocolatier. What is it about chocolate that you find appealing?

WW: You have to be exact and focused at all times. There are many rules to follow regarding temperatures, but you can be very creative with flavors and push the boundaries of the technical limits. Chocolate demands a high skill set, and you are working with very expensive ingredients – challenges I am happy to accept, to turn something already delicate into something extraordinary.

copper bowl

AE: What’s the biggest challenge in producing chocolate confections?

WW: Chocolate can be tempermental. Even though I have worked with chocolate for many years, I still get surprised sometimes. You have to work very clean and be conscious of your timing in order for the product to come out just right.

chocolate on marble

AE: Do you make all of the chocolates yourself?

WW: All of our chocolates are hand-dipped by our team. I work with fellow bakers, passing on all I know about chocolate. And, we all have the chance to enhance our skills by continual practice, and striving for a near-perfect end result.

chocolate mold

AE: What’s your favorite flavor, in the mix we offer?

WW: Currently, the Plum Armagnac is my favorite. Sweet plums inside dark chocolate with a hint of Armagnac cognac pairs perfectly with a glass of red wine.

IMG_1393

AE: Do you have a favorite chocolate memory from childhood?

WW: Growing up in a pastry shop led to quite a few encounters with chocolate. My dad used to bring home a chunk of his commercial blocks of chocolate, and me and my sister would gnaw on it for quite a while before it disappeared.

Come Christmas time we would help assemble the gingerbread houses, which in my dad’s shop are made entirely of chocolate. It would be a shame if one of the walls would break and we’d have to eat it!

lavendar chocolate

AE: What kind of  encouragement do you have for aspiring chocolatiers?

WW: Chocolate work can be very demanding, but also very rewarding. People shy away from it in fear of failure, but with a little time and effort you can create delicious treats. And, worst case scenario, you have to eat it all yourself!

Ready to give them our new King Arthur chocolates a try? Order here!

finished chocolates

Amber Eisler
About

Amber Eisler was born and raised in Washington, DC. She is a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, and started her time at King Arthur Flour in the production bakery. Amber now works full-time in the Baking Education Center, and enjoys sharing her passion ...

comments

  1. Carolyn

    I wish you would do a blog about how to melt white chocolate and butterscotch chips. I have had no luck with either. A recent biscotti recipe suggested melting white chocolate chips and dipping the finished cookies. Several years ago melted butterscotch chips were used in a recipe. Both times I tried using the microwave at a low power setting. The chips softened a bit and then a ‘hot spot’ developed in the middle and discolored (started to burn?). Further short nuke times only made it all worse. I tried putting the dish over simmering water on the stove with no results other than enough softening to make a mashed up glob no matter how long I left it. I’ve never had this problem with regular semisweet or bittersweet chocolate. It’s time for a KAF tutorial!!! Please.

    Reply
    1. The Baker's Hotline

      It is easier to control the melting of white chocolate over a double boiler than in a microwave. Start with evenly chopped chocolate. Melt the chocolate over the boiler until almost all of it has melted. Remove it from the heat. Stir gently to finish melting. The trick is to avoid overcooking white chocolate. I will pass your suggestion of a KAF tutorial on to MJ.~Jaydl@KAF

    2. Heather

      I’ve found sometimes adding just a touch of shortening will help it melt, especially if it’s vanilla flavored chips (not real chocolate).

Post a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *