Dirty little chocolate secrets
Chocolate. Oh heavenly Chocolate! The Aztecs—early converts to the cause—believed that it was a gift from the gods, and that it could even bestow special powers upon those who consumed it. We can confirm that this is true. We learned it at Halldór Kr. Sigurðsson’s chocolate making course. We also learned to make chocolate. It was sexy.
On a rainy afternoon, a group of dedicated people is immersed in the steamy act of melting chocolate. Learning how to heat, stir and harden chocolate; how best to bathe marzipan in it, and how to sprinkle the pieces of chocolate covered marzipan with honey glazing, almonds or caramel for that closing touch. Eventually, we are left with a selection of perfect love bites, and as the course unfolds I realise: chocolate has never been sexier.
Fit for a chocoholic
As we arrive at choco-school HQ, we find handsome instructor Halldór preparing the oven and ingredients that we’ll be using: melting the chocolate in a pot on the stove, honey glazing the almonds and kneading the caramel and nut fillings. He appears surprisingly fit for someone who’s surrounded by chocolate and cakes all day long. He likes to stay in shape, he explains when prodded.
At Hagkaup’s kitchen and lecture hall, everything had been prepared beforehand, student tables all set up with melting pots, thermometers, chocolate forms, spoons and so on and so forth. The room was filled with an air of aromatic chocolate and anticipation as us students were decked out in aprons and sat at our respective stations. Various types of chocolate, dark, light, toppings and drops were scattered around the place, and some of us simply couldn’t resist dipping a finger in one of the chocolate pots. Halldór, who jokingly tells us he’s often referred to as ‘the pastry boy’, started his lecture by stressing the importance of ‘the feeling’ when baking, as adding a ‘dash’ of this or the other by heart, is a common practice in the pastry world. And, as we learned, this is harder than it sounds.
The room falls silent as Halldór demonstrates how to stir the melted chocolate and separate the clumps. Us students hypnotised, staring like we’ve never seen anything like it before. It’s sexy and he knows it. We’re soon going to melt the chocolate too, pour it into the forms and la-di-da, it will become the shell of the chocolate piece. Light and dark chocolate slowly heats up in the pots in front of us and we take turn pouring it in and out of the form. At this stage, it’s vital to consider your desired texture. Do you want the pieces glossy, marbled or matte? Different methods lead to different results, and you have to move fast as the chocolate hardens quickly! We succeed in creating the shells, stuff them with various fillings, and finally close them off with a dark chocolate cap. Suddenly, showers of chocolate fly through the air and hit all of us at my table. Drops of chocolate stream down our faces, hands and stain our aprons. The person next to me is furiously waving her chocolate form in the air, splashing its content all over the group. We burst out laughing and from this moment on, the course only gets hotter.
Messing with chocolate
“Now, you get your rolling pin from underneath the bed to flatten out the marzipan, and what muscles do you think you use for this exercise? Your abdominals,” the pastry boy tells us as he continues making love to the marzipan. He goes on to relay a hilarious tale of women who wanted to pour chocolate over him during one of his courses—I can see how that would happen.
Our next task is to create the marzipan pieces, usually referred to as ‘the love bites’. Halldór goes on to define the term behind the love bite; “a reasonably sized chunk for two people to share.”
In order to master the love bites you need to know your 42° position; depending on your skills, you’ll gain different class of chocolate. The 42° position is the temperature at which the chocolate needs to be, in order to reach is climax. If it’s any higher, the so-called crystals in the chocolate will break down, and repeating the process is tricky.
We got four pieces, all shapes and sizes, I quickly swap one of them for a relatively bigger bite, as size does matter. To our amazement, we were successful and completed the task with excellence, the marzipan swimming in in a sea of chocolate. The pot was filled with one marzipan chunk after the other, making for a highly sensual experience .
Once we had reached the peak, we were all high on chocolate . Voyeuristically observing the others spill a dab of chocolate on the table so they could eat it moments later, when it had grown solid, or lick it warm from their fingertips—that’s bliss. And the pleasure wasn’t all mine, the sight of those eyes closing, those mouths moaning, was thoroughly alluring. True chocolate passion.
The meditating effect afterwards left us numb, but with a generous amount of handcrafted chocolate pieces. The group had bonded as we engaged in the lustful act of eating chocolate. And so, we cleared our workstations and left feeling well pleased and satisfied.
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