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Couture Chocolate: A Masterclass in Chocolate Hardcover – 25 Oct 2011

4.9 out of 5 stars 79 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Jacqui Small LLP (25 Oct. 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1906417598
  • ISBN-13: 978-1906417598
  • Product Dimensions: 27.2 x 21.3 x 3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (79 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 58,492 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

‘William Curley is a chocolatier extraordinaire. Find out all you need to know about the cocoa bean and drool over his stunning recipes.'

(Sainsbury's magazine)

‘Handsomely produced volume, filled with alluring images…its ample collection of recipes and techniques really does offer the ‘masterclass in chocolate’ its dust jacket claims. A book to savour and one which will inspire chocolate lovers everywhere.’

(www.chocolatier.co.uk)

‘The definitive chocolate book for 2011…an exquisite book, packed full of stunning photography and easy to follow recipes.’

(www.womentalking.co.uk)

‘Stunning photography entices the reader at every turn of the page. This is a beautiful book that will appeal to all levels of chefs and chocolate makers. It’s a must-have for anyone serious about chocolate, whether you are a beginner or a professional.’

(Caterer & Hotelkeeper)

‘Beautiful, stylish and exciting…I simply love this book’

(Chocablog.com)

‘Superbly illustrated with mouthwatering photography…exquisite recipes’

(Amerrierworld.wordpress.com)

'The Best 50 Cookbooks of 2011'

(Huffingtonpost.com)

‘Wins the prize for most beautiful book of the year. Stunning.’

(Foodandwinefinds.blogspot.com)

Winner 'Cookbook of the Year' Guild of Food Writer's Awards 2011



Shortlisted 'Food Book of the Year' Andre Simon Awards 2011



Shortlisted 'Best Chocolate Book in the World' Gourmand Awards 2011

Review

'William Curley is one of the great chocolatiers. By combining flawless technique and wonderfully exciting creativity he literally brings chocolate to life.'

(Heston Blumenthal)

'William's talent and expertise were evident from the early days spent with me at Le Manoir aux Quat Saisons. His chocolates and patisseries are like no other ­- he was one of the first to produce such incredible and innovative creations outside of France. I am thrilled that he has excelled professionally in this field.'

(Raymond Blanc)

'William has that terribly rare thing - the determination to succeed born out of hard work. Most young chefs want to be famous more than just being good at what they do. William never takes shortcuts. He so deserves his success.'

(Marco Pierre White)

'William worked for me whilst I was at The Savoy as my Chef Patissier, heading up a team of 21 pastry chefs. The role defined William as a patissier, as his experience in the hotel and restaurant world went on to give him the confidence required to set up his own shops. William is one of the best Patissiers in the business.'

(Anton Edelmann)

'This book is a detailed insight into William's chocolates and patisseries and the ideas and inspirations behind his innovative flavour combinations, and should have pride of place in every chocolate lover's kitchen.' - from the Foreword

(Pierre Koffman)

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Format: Hardcover
For most people this is very advanced and would see little further action than oo-ing and arr-ing on the coffee table, however if you were someone wanting to set up their own chocolate business this publication would be an inspiring and beautiful textbook.

After explaining the history and methods making chocolate the recipes are broken down into;
truffles and filled chocolates: making ganache, the science of the perfect truffle, adding fabulous flavours
couture chocolates: experimental fillings such as apricot and wasabi, black rice vinegar
"bouches" and small delights: chocolate rochers, millionaire's shortbread;
pâtisserie: chocolate and praline Paris Brest, chocolate financiers, chocolate mielle feuile and more;
chocolate ices, drinks, sauces and spreads.

William's partner is Japanese and the fusion of chocolate with Japanese ingredients is one of the things that gives him his signature style.

This book would make a fabulous gift for any discerning chocolate lover.
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Format: Hardcover
I can only provide a glowing report for this book - it was truly excellent. Glossy DELICIOUS pictures on every page for each recipe! So tempting I just had to try them out. Surprisingly simple to create.. I cannot honestly tell you my creations tasted as divine as the goods from the man himself though. But this only means I can go into his wonderful little shop in Richmond and smell the wonderful chocolatey air... Mmm :) Top marks to William Curley!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I have always been of the opinion that fine artisan chocolates should look as beautiful as they taste. Willam Curley's Couture Chocolate: A Masterclass in Chocolate takes it a step further moving artisan chocolates from culinary creations to five-star / Michelin food artistry, simply stunning.

From the first page to the final, the exquisite photographs are a rare treat in chocolate as fine art. Photographer Jose Lasheras redefines chocolate photography in his exquisite staging of the chocolates. His culinary choreography tells stories of Indulgence so including taste, texture, color and shape.

I Have always be of the opinion that pretty pictures alone do not justify buying a cookbook. When it comes to Couture Chocolates the amazing photographs are merely one of its assets. This book is buy no way a look book it is in fact in equal parts an art book, recipe book, and a first-Class instruction manual.

The book begins with a chapter titled "Chocolate Essentials" that lays out the basics of working with fine chocolate. Topics include a clear and concise explanation of the different types of chocolates as well as sections with tips on tasting chocolate and advice on shelf life and storage.

I really like the "sidebar" addressing the differences between making chocolates in a commercial kitchen versus a home kitchen.

What makes this chapter standout are the sections on tempering chocolate and making a basic ganache. I would go so far as to say they are worth the price of the book. Because tempering and making a basic ganache are two of the most important skills involved in making fine chocolate desserts, one cannot underestimate the importance of their mastery.
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Format: Hardcover
This is a beautiful book. I'm sure everyone else that uses recipe books will agree that a picture for every recipe is brilliant (and rare!). Very informative and lots of care has been taken to go into detail on techniques that I find other books on chocolate skim over.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Possibly one of the best books to be produced about making and enjoying chocolate in its many forms. Until I read the book I had never realised there was quite so much detail involved and so many genuine variations possible, and not just with 'chocolates'. And then Curley takes us up to a higher level with the mouth watering pictures illustrating his creations, one almost wants to lick the pages.

He begins with the simplest variants, and most of these are possible with ordinary home kitchen equipment. But then as we work through the sections the degrees of difficulty are increased with the ever more exotic treats on offer from across the whole world. Special equipment is detailed for us, as are some very interesting techniques. This is a complete tutorial if you have the enthusiasm, stamina, and time for lots of practice to hone the skills, but remember that some natural talent is also needed to be able to get close to Curley's standards.

I've been a random buyer of his chocolates for a few years, always taking pot luck on the selection knowing I will not be disappointed; every time I pass one of his shops I am drawn in, and leave happier even if significantly poorer. Fortunately, now with this book in hand it is possible to attempt to re-create some of our favourites without leaving home. Of course none of us is going to achieve his level of perfection, but this is an excellent guide leading us through to what is possible. I can foresee many more happy sticky months of experimentation and licking fingers.

Couture Chocolate has received many awards already from the industry, and now having read it I can confirm they are justified. A very solid five gold stars is well deserved.

Addendum.
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