The Chocolate Life

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What's the weirdest flavor/inclusion combination you've not only heard of in chocolate but have actually eaten?

Inquiring chocolate minds want to know.

I will start things off by saying that I think the Austrians are among the most adventurous when it comes to flavors in chocolate.

I used to think it was the Spanish when I was tasting the work of Enric Rovira (chocolate covered corn-nuts, pretty good actually) and Oriol Balaguer (the saffron truffles were definitely an acquired taste, and it was a lot of fun to give someone his pop-rocks chocolate without telling them what it was ...).

Lately, however, I think the prize has to go to Zotter. I took a look at a bar with an asparagus or artichoke and something or other filling and decided instead (whatever possessed me I do not know) to try the mustard and coffee bar. It wasn't nearly as bad as it sounds, thought it is not something I would buy for myself (I got mine at Fog City News in SF) ever again.

There is another Austrian company I have heard of that is making camel's milk chocolate for sale in the middle east. I would definitely try it (at least once) just to know how it tasted different from cow's milk.

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The only camel's milk chocolate I've tried is Al Nassma.  Ironically, I brought a bar to work today.  Only 2% camel milk powder, so not sure if what I'm tasting is camel milk or the honey they also add to it, but it's interesting. 

Al Nassma also makes chocolates with higher (up to 30 % if i recall) camels milk powder - i'd recommend trying it if you get the opportunity.

This weekend I tried making a  few truffles such as  a wasabi ginger truffle, ancho chili and cayenne truffle - made my own halvah and then prepared a halvah choco truffle - much better Halvah then the store bought - I like to work with spices - like fennel and sea salt - that has been received well.  Also spicy chili mango with pepitas and sea salt - in bittersweet chocolate - I was busy this weekend - :)  Ggirl - I like working with basil  and sage would be interesting... I love the smell of fennel when I am toasting it -before I use it in a recipe....even tried making a curry with hot and sweet curry powder in dark chocolate - trying it out on my clients this week....

This thread is truly inspiring. I can see I have a lot of tasting to do. Thanks everyone for helping me prove my theory - chocolate goes with everything!

Even anchovies.

I believe it!

Oh wow! Can you imagine those doughnut holes with anchovies stuck through them that they serve at the restaurant Noma in Copenhagen dipped in chocolate?    !!!

Hi Clay, I had hoped you were in Manhattan or Brooklyn (as I'll be there May 22&23) so that I can see you. I'm visiting from the Philippines, where 5+ yrs ago I planted cacao on a whim because I chanced upon left-over & cheap seedlings. Finding that they fruited in ~4 yrs & that I can make Cacao Bean chocolates (not Bean-to-Bar as I make bonbons), I have since been having lots of fun after learning from you & others at 'thechocolatelife' & finding people liking my 'artisan' bitter products. Speaking of inclusions, I use Philippine Dried Mangoes, Roasted Cashews & Candied Guyabano. I very much would like to send you some to try. Please email me an address at . I am excited to get your feedback although I know I still have to learn more; get better equipment (designed & built by me in the Philippines to make them affordable); use better processes; plant better varieties; etc. Mabuhay & best regards, Gerry

Oh my goodness Gerry, that sounds amazing! I'm so impressed and intrigued. If I ever get to the Philippines, I'll have to come visit.

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