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Video: Chef prepares chocolate holiday creations

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    >>> a kind kisses.

    >> and we are back with today's holiday kitchen and we are giving corn flakes a whole new meaning. homemade chocolate is hard to resist, especially when it is made by the king of chocolate , jacques torres is a baker extrordinaire and owner of jacques torres chocolate . how is that, in new york city ? we are so happy to see you.

    >> hello, jacques .

    >> french accent . nice to see you, thank you.

    >> so what are we making today, jacques ?

    >> i melt some chocolate in the microwave, then tough leave it for maybe 10, 15 minute on the counter with air going to cool it down a little bit.

    >> making so we know it, a chocolate bark?

    >> yes, make a chocolate bark.

    >> is what, chocolate and nuts?

    >> nuts. then make little dollops of chocolate and corn flakes .

    >> oh.

    >> so this is really good.

    >> is this milk chocolate , dark chocolate ?

    >> dark chocolate melted and tempered. let it cool down when it is melted, 100 degrees.

    >> still warm?

    >> then it crystallize on the side, just stir it and use a thermometer like that?

    >> yes.

    >> you click here and get a temperature here.

    >> oh that is wild.

    >> you can do that with -- . how hot is kathie lee ? what am i?

    >> i cannot disclose that.

    >> smoking.

    >> same thing.

    >> this is great. you can -- you can use it around the house, look at the leaks in the window, you can even long for the hot spots . i won't talk about that.

    >> oh.

    >> that has lots of uses.

    >> okay. so, that chocolates take a little bit, put it over the nuts. we have a pistachio and almonds.

    >> whatever you like, you can use?

    >> exactly. i put about two pounds of chocolate here.

    >> two pounds?

    >> two pounds. yeah, we going to do a big piece of bark here.

    >> okay.

    >> then we going to stir that very fast.

    >> uh-huh.

    >> then when you stir --

    >> looks good. have some almonds. they are plain.

    >> when they are co-coated --

    >> are you torturing?

    >> she can't have chocolate .

    >> i can't have sweets until christmas.

    >> that looks like my backyard, i'm sorry.

    >> you just go like that and mix it well. and you want to do the other one with me?

    >> sure.

    >> okay. let's got other side.

    >> nice talking to you.

    >> so this looks good.

    >> i'm going to do the same here. you see when the chocolate is tempered, is easy to do a lot of things with t so about maybe a pound and a half for that much corn flakes . then going to use a rubber spatula. mix everything together. so same thing.

    >> together.

    >> so just the exact same thing but with corn flake ?

    >> exactly the same thing, yes.

    >> we don't want to count any calories the all.

    >> during the holiday, chocolate doesn't contain any calories. after the holiday, you know, you have to be a little bit more careful.

    >> that looks good, too.

    >> i got to admit.

    >> did a good job.

    >> thank you, jacques .

    >> now we spread this one out?

    >> here.

    >> dollops.

    >> two spoon and just do something like that and you can make them as big as you want. usually --

    >> hoda likes big ones . big dollops.

    >> let's do a big old dollop.

    >> what are you talking about?

    >> you like a lot of sweets, baby.

    >> wow, look at that.

    >> that is how she rolls.

    >> this is for two. this is for two.

    >> how long do you cook this, jacques ?

    >> we don't bake it, we put that in the fridge for 15 minutes , 10 to 15 minutes , then the chocolate become hard, you flip it over, remove the paper, break it in pieces and then we have it behind us.

    >> oh, let's check it out.

    >> let's go check it out.

    >> the finished things behind us.

    >> oh, my gosh, look how that looks.

    >> that looks delicious.

    >> oh.

    >> the way i love to present it on the cake stand like that or make a big pile and you can go as high as that on the center of a table and you have all that chocolate .

    >> let people dig in?

    >> that looks delicious.

    >> people can share.

    >> people can share but not today.

    >> and those are actually the -- . those look --

    >> the corn flakes . when you bite into it, you don't really realize it is corn flakes .

    >> you are torturing her, she can't have any sweets. just trying to be polite sew doesn't get mad.

    >> smelling have any cal sflinchs don't do t don't do it.

    >> the only thing that help mess is i'm not a dark chocolate fan. i would go for this one, the milk chocolate .

    >> this doesn't contain much sugar.

    >> these are little gifts you have made?

    >> you can take that put it in a little bag, you know, little ribbon and it is great. they are nice gift.

    >> homemade.

    >> your friends --

    >> impressed with that.

    >> what do we have here? chocolates from --

    >> i have more items that i do snowmen, santa, boxes of chocolates. we carry that into our store.

    >> jacques , thank you so, so much.

    >> merry christmas , thank you.

    >>> up next do it yourself gifts that put the thought back into the holidays right after this. can i say

TODAY
updated 12/17/2009 11:13:10 AM ET 2009-12-17T16:13:10

Recipe: Chocolate bark

Ingredients
  • Chocolate bark
  • Mixed nuts
  • Dried fruit
  • Tempered chocolate
  • Tempered chocolate
  • 2 pounds of chocolate or chocolate discs
Preparation

Chocolate bark
Pour your choice of mixed nuts and/or dried fruit onto a parchment paper-lined baking sheet, spreading them out evenly. The desired amount of nuts and dried fruit can be up to the cook, either a lot or a little.

Pour enough tempered chocolate over them to cover almost completely. Use an offset spatula to spread the chocolate and nuts evenly in the pan and out to the edges, to completely fill the pan in an even layer. Add more chocolate if needed. Place baking sheet in the refrigerator to set and harden. When set, invert onto a clean surface and remove parchment paper. You may need to run the blade of a knife around the edge of the pan to loosen the bark from the sides of the pan.

Break into mid-size pieces and store in airtight container in a cool, dry area.

How to temper chocolate
Place a saucepan half-filled with water over medium heat and cover with a heatproof mixing bowl large enough to snugly rest on the rim of the saucepan.

Use 2 pounds of chopped chocolate or chocolate discs. Place about 2/3 of the chopped chocolate or chocolate discs into the bowl.

Use a rubber spatula to stir occasionally until the chocolate reaches about 100°F. This can be determined by either inserting a candy thermometer or noting that about 2/3 of the chocolate has melted.

Carefully remove the bowl from the pan. Stir in the remaining chocolate.

As the chocolate cools you will see it start to crystallize (harden) around the outside edge of the bowl. Use the rubber spatula to stir this crystallized chocolate into the melted chocolate.

Place the bowl of melted chocolate back over simmering water to ensure chocolate is completely melted and reheated; should reach a temperature of 88°F-90°F.

If the chocolate is tempered, a knife tip dipped into tempered chocolate will set with a nice shine after 60 seconds in the refrigerator.

Recipe: Chocolate corn flakes

I always try to bring contrast to every dessert. I discovered corn flakes ten years ago and, being a pastry chef, wondered what would happen if I covered them with chocolate. I loved it so much that now I take corn flakes home to France and make this recipe for my friends. They wonder about the things I am learning in America, but there are never any leftovers.

Crispness is important, so use a fresh box of corn flakes. You will need to have tempered chocolate ready before you begin. Use the best-quality bittersweet chocolate that you can find.

Ingredients
  • 4 cups corn flakes
  • 6 ounces bittersweet chocolate
Preparation

Pour the corn flakes into a large mixing bowl, then pour about half of the tempered chocolate over them. Use a rubber spatula and mix until they are coated evenly. The tempered chocolate will immediately begin to set. Once the chocolate has set, repeat with the remaining chocolate to give a second coat.

Quickly scoop the chocolate corn flakes into small mounds onto a parchment paper-covered baking sheet. I find it easier to use one spoon to scoop and another spoon to scrape the scooped mixture onto the baking sheet. It is important to work quickly because the mixture is easier to scoop before the chocolate hardens.

If your kitchen is very hot, you can place the baking sheet in the refrigerator for about 5 minutes to allow the chocolate to harden. Do not leave them in the refrigerator for more than 10 minutes; if they get too cold, condensation will form on them when they are removed from the refrigerator due to the difference in temperature between the cold chocolate and the warm air. This will cause the chocolate to turn white. While this doesn't affect the taste, it does ruin the appearance.

Store them in an airtight container in a cool, dry area. They will keep for two weeks, if you can resist eating them.

Serving Size

Yield: About 6 dozen pieces

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