Raising the bar on chocolate making

 

FOOD FILE:Chocolate . . . one of the little luxuries we can still afford. And there will be plenty of opportunities to indulge at next weekend’s Temple Bar Chocolate Festival in Dublin 2.

From Friday until Sunday, some of the biggest names in chocolate-making, from Ireland and further afield, will be participating in workshops, demonstrations and talks. There will be an outdoor screening of the original Willie Wonka and the Chocolate Factoryfrom 1971 on Friday evening at 7pm in Meeting House Square to kick off the festivities. David Greenwood-Haigh of Fairtrade chocolate company Divine, and Willie Harcourt-Cooze (left) of Willie’s Cacao, in Devon and Venezuela, are both taking part on Saturday. Greenwood-Haigh is doing a children’s workshop in Smock Alley Theatre at 10am and a cooking demo in the Morgan Hotel at 4pm (both are free, but booking is essential), while Harcourt-Cooze, whose adventures in the Channel 4 documentary series Willie’s Wonky Chocolate Factory made fascinating viewing, will be at the Button Factory at 2.30pm (€10/€15). On Chocolate Sundae, Meeting House Square will be the venue for an artisan chocolate-makers’ fair (10.30am-4.30pm), and chocolatier Benoit Lorge will be doing a demo in the Gallery of Photography (noon-2pm). There are lots of other events on, and the full programme is at www.templebar.ie. Some events, including the outdoor movie screening, are free but require booking, tel: 01-8883610.

WEB WATCH

www.cocoandme.com

You might not make it to Broadway market in Hackney on a regular basis, but you can get the full flavour of London’s East End by reading this blog written by stallholder and baker extraordinaire Tamami Haga, whose gorgeous recipes, especially those using chocolate, are worth a look. The blog entries on tempering chocolate, and making vanilla extract at home, are fascinating.

Just one Conetto . . .

Check out the pretty foil wrapped chocolates in the shape of ladybirds, bees, gold hearts and mini ice-cream cones from Del Gusto, Anna Coleman’s Italian-food-importing company. The chocolates, made by Caffarel in Piedmont, are really cute, as well as tasting great. There are seasonal additions to the range too, so you could splash out for your Halloween trick or treaters next weekend. Caffarel also makes high-quality Gianduia chocolates with a velvety hazelnut filling, in both milk and bittersweet varieties (€11.59 for 250g). Our favourite? This mini-cone-shaped Conetto (€1.58), filled with chocolate cream and crunchy little nuggets of amaretti biscuit; definitely not for sharing. Caffarel chocolates are available at speciality food shops including Donnybrook Fair, Anderson’s, Liston’s, Carluccio’s and the Butler’s Pantry in Dublin, and Avoca shops nationwide.