How lucky am I??? (part one…home chocolate classes)

Well, where to start? This week, a dear friend sent me a link to a Groupon for chocolate classes in Vancouver. I thought to myself: I can get that in my own kitchen… replete with good pals, booze, and laughs galore.

You see, over the course of two nights in November (I had to add a second night, there was such interest), I was lucky enough to host chocolate diva Monica Mueller in my home, for a glimpse into her sweet world.

After some shots of Advocaat (which Monica described as ‘fermented egg yolks’ in a bid to keep more for herself) along with dark chocolate as a chaser, then biscotti flavoured Baileys liqueur in chocolate shooter cups, then port wine, Monica showed us how to properly temper chocolate.

Tempering chocolate... kinda like grouting tile?

Tempering chocolate… kinda like grouting tile?

Then we were shown how to apply chocolate to a cocoa butter transfer sheet, for a striking and simple design effect.

When peeled away after drying, we had a salt and pepper chocolate bark with a cool orange and red striped design.

When the transfer sheet was peeled away after drying, we had a salt and pepper chocolate bark with a cool orange and red striped design. Here, Kayla applies the tempered chocolate to the sheet.

And! We learned the secret of how they get the caramel in the Caramilk bar 😉

Mesmerizing! Why didn't I stick my face under here?!?!

Mesmerizing! Why didn’t I stick my face under here?!?!

Fruit! See, it's good for ya! Janet slices apples for the caramel apple bites.

Fruit! See, it’s good for ya! Janet slices apples for the caramel apple bites.

My favourite item of the night was the crispy peanut butter toffee clusters made with milk chocolate. Chomping at the bit to add the Rice Krispies...

My favourite item of the night was the crispy peanut butter toffee clusters made with milk chocolate. Chomping at the bit to add the Rice Krispies…

Ramsey tries his hand at tempering.

Ramsey tries his hand at tempering.

Sweet climax... goodies to take home!

Sweet climax… goodies to take home!

All in all, the two evenings yielded eggnog truffles, salt and pepper chocolate bark, crispy toffee clusters, dipped marzipan, caramel apple bites, vanilla chai spice tea infused truffles, and crunchy hazelnut balls. We also got into trouble with Trader Joe’s cookie butter: try it rolled in cocoa as a truffle-y unit.

When can we do this again?!?

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