We know that chocolate can be paired beautifully with caramel treats and fresh fruits, but what about with foods we eat almost every day?
We spoke to food stylist, blogger and author, Katelyn (Williams) Allegra about weird chocolate combinations we never really thought of that actually work, and this is what she said.
Dark chocolate and basil
I absolutely adore dark chocolate and basil together. If you make truffles, infuse the cream with fresh basil, then strain it and pour it over the chocolate. Allow to set and then roll into balls. It makes such an interesting after-dinner treat.
Watermelon and chocolate
There is a Sicilian dish gelo di melone which is a watermelon soup thickened with cornflour, sweetened with sugar, spiced with cinnamon and grated with chocolate. It’s a strange combination but works so well.
Chocolate and tomato
Chocolate and tomato is also another strange combination that works so well. A little very dark chocolate treated into spicy tomato recipes such as chili con carne or bolognese sauce adds a richness and accentuates the meaty flavour. While we see chocolate as a treat, Mexican cooks use chocolate or cocoa as a spice, using it in moderation to add depth to savory dishes and smooth out sharp ingredients.
White chocolate and olives
Just as a pinch of sea salt adds a salty kick to a chocolate bar, so small bites of dried olives add an interesting saltiness to the intense sweetness of white chocolate.
Chocolate and aubergine
In the south of Italy they pair aubergine and chocolate to make a sort of pancake – the aubergines and sliced and fried and then drizzled with a boozy chocolate ganache. Apparently it’s delicious.
White chocolate and caviar
In the late ’90s, Heston Blumenthal, with the help of a food scientist, discovered that white chocolate and caviar share a molecular affinity that makes them a perfect pairing. The fishiness of the eggs is balanced by the creamy, buttery flavour of the white chocolate.
White chocolate and cauliflower
Blumenthal famously created a cauliflower risotto with a carpaccio of cauliflower and chocolate jelly. The idea was that each component would release its flavour in sequence, culminating in a burst of bitterness from the specially encapsulated chocolate that Blumenthal compared to an espresso at the end of a meal.
Chocolate: The Cookbook by Katelyn Williams is available for purchase on Loot.co.za. Click here to purchase