Chocolate Glossary

Glossary of Chocolate Terms

* Bonbon
A small candy or sweet; French word for sweet

* Cacao
A tropical evergreen tree that grows only near the equator. It produces the beans from which chocolate, cocoa powder and cocoa butter are made.

* Chocolate bark
A piece of flat, irregularly shaped chocolate often containing chopped nuts and fruits. It is made from all types of chocolate. Its exterior is rough like tree bark.

* Chocolate bloom
If chocolate has white dots and streaks or a dull gray film, it is not spoiled. It has bloom. The appearance is caused by the separation of the cocoa butter from the other ingredients in the chocolate. When the chocolate is melted, the cocoa butter blends back in.

* Chocolate creme brulee
Cold chocolate custard sprinkled with sugar. The sugar is caramelized by applying heat, making the top crisp and brittle.

* Chocolate liquor
A nonalcoholic chocolate liquid created by grinding roasted cacao beans. It is the basis of all chocolate. Sometimes it is called chocolate paste.

* Chocolate mousse
Melted chocolate is mixed with stiffly beaten egg whites and whipped cream to create a fluffy, light dessert.

* Chocolate truffle
A ball shaped candy about 80% chocolate with a mixture of chocolate and cream in the center. Many variations are made with the addition of fruit, nuts, creams and liqueurs. The outside may be rolled in chocolate, coconut, chopped nuts, powdered sugar or other delights.

* Chocolatier
A person well trained in chocolate making who creates fine chocolate.

* Cocoa butter
A natural fat that occurs in cacao beans. It is removed from chocolate liquor during the processing of chocolate, but it is added back later in the process to make the texture and flavor of the chocolate richer. It is the basis of white chocolate.

* Couverture
Chocolate that contains at least 32% cocoa butter which is higher than regular chocolate. It is used on truffles and other candies to give them a thin, smooth, shiny coating. It is also used for molding, baking, candy making.

* Double boiler
Great for melting chocolate. Two pans fit together with the top pan sitting a litttle way inside the bottom one. Put water in the bottom one, and chocolate in the top. It allows chocolate, butter, sauces, or custards to cook without burning or curdling.

* Enrobe
Coating candies and confections with chocolate. Enrobing is done in a special machine.

Ganache
A mixture of chocolate and cream that is used as the center for truffles, filling for cakes and tarts, and can be liquid enough to be used as a glaze. It is often flavored with liqueurs and extracts.

* Lecithin
An emulsifier (stabilizer) added to chocolate as it is being processed to give it smoothness and a fluid consistency. It is derived from soybeans.

* Mocha
Mixture of chocolate and coffee.

* Mousse
A rich, creamy frozen dessert.

* Pot de creme
French dessert that is a creamy, smooth baked chocolate custard. It is served in cups that have tight fitting lids. The cups are set in hot water during baking (bain marie-hot water bath) so that the custard is very delicate and light.

* Tempering
A process in the making of chocolate that sets the cocoa butter so that the chocolate has the desired texture. Chocolate used for dipping, molding and candy making usually has to be tempered.

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