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12th Aug 2021

Top chef takes us through the most delicious and unusual chocolate pairings

Brian Dillon

A while back, we hosted a live chocolate tasting event with Green & Black’s. From the ultimate chocolate pairings to an unreal fondant recipe, guests got to experience chocolate in a way they may have never done before with expert host and Michelin star Chef Eric Matthews.

Eric took us on a journey through Green & Black’s new Intensity Scale which features on the front of packs in stores, allowing us to choose the flavour that’s just right for us.

If you missed out, fear not. Because we’re here to bring you all off the highlights from our event with Green & Black’s so you can have the ultimate chocolate experience at home.

The event looked at three different types of Green & Black’s chocolate and how you should pair them with other flavours. First up, the White Chocolate with Madagascan Vanilla (30% cocoa). Then, it was Butterscotch (37% cocoa, a personal favourite of Eric’s), and Ginger (60% cocoa). All of the flavours made for some really interesting pairings. Then, Eric showed us a simple yet delicious chocolate fondant recipe, which you will find below.

Eric explaining his favourite chocolate pairings

So, let’s get into the chocolate pairings.

The 30% White Chocolate is a popular choice for those who like something sweet as it’s 30% cocoa. Because of it’s richness and the Madagascan Vanilla, it goes great with something that has a bit of acidity and sweetness to it. To cut through that richness, Eric pairs it with a Raspberry Kombucha.

Moving onto the Butterscotch, Eric decided to pair it with an iced latte made with oat milk. This chocolate falls near the middle of the Intensity Scale and for Eric, it’s a great chocolate for the middle of the day that you might have with a coffee. He explains, “There’s nearly a child-like flavour to this. I know it’s coffee and you might think coffee is for adults, but that pairing reminds me of when you’re a kid and you might have cereal that melts into your milk and it just comforts you. But also in a sophisticated way.”

With the third pairing, Eric explains that a more intense chocolate with ginger is “one of those flavours that’s very adult and sophisticated. It’s really warming and on the darker side of the intensity scale, which is why we’re going to pair it with something unusual.”

That bar consists of crystalised ginger in dark chocolate, which brings a certain spice and warmth to the overall flavour. So for this chocolate, Eric decides to pair it with Earl Grey tea, explaining, “I know you might think it’s very unusual, but it’s a really cool combination. Chocolate, stem ginger and earl grey is a great combination that I suppose a lot of people don’t try. It’s a great, light way to finish off a meal.”

Eric adds, “It’s interesting to pair these chocolate flavours with different drinks. We specifically chose these drinks to give everybody something interesting to think about. Chocolate isn’t just for wine. For example, whiskey works incredibly well with milk chocolate.

“Another really weird combination that I’m not sure people have heard about is white chocolate, caviar and scallops. I know it sounds really weird, but I worked in a restaurant where this was a combination on the menu. The sky is kind of the limit when it comes to chocolate. The most important thing when it comes to chocolate is to use your senses. You can really be surprised by some pairings.”

After explaining his favourite Green & Black’s chocolate pairings, Eric treated guests to a wonderfully tasty and super easy chocolate recipe they can make at home, which I am about to share with you guys! 

With a prep time of 40 minutes and a cook time of just 15 minutes, you definitely won’t regret trying your hand at this. You’ll need these ingredients:

● 160g 70% chocolate
● 25g unsalted butter
● 100g egg white
● 35g caster sugar
● 10g rice flour

Here is the method to follow:

● Firstly, melt the chocolate and butter over a Bain Marie.
● Dissolve the sugar in the first part of the egg white using a blender.
● Now add the melted chocolate and butter mix to the blender or stick blender then the rice flour and the remaining egg white.
● Using round metal rings and parchment paper, pipe the mix into the lined rings and slowly cook at 76c until set and warm.
● Decant on to your favourite plate and serve with a scoop of Green & Black’s vanilla ice cream.

Green & Black’s chocolate is wildly and deliciously organic, taking inspiration from nature. Their recently launched Intensity Scale features on the new packaging of Green & Black’s Organic bars, helping chocolate lovers discover their preference as well as flavours they may have never realised they loved.

If you want to find out more about Green & Black’s organic, fair trade chocolate as well as the intensity scale, you can head here.