This year’s chocolate extravaganza is scheduled for Nov 21-24, with the chocolate packing party on November 25. That’s still about two months out, but because I like to trial my new flavors well in advance, I want to get started in the next month or so. Also, for various reasons, it makes sense for me to do my chocolate shopping now.
I am, of course, facing the usual dilemma, which is that I can only stuff 28 flavors into a box of chocolates. There are always far more flavors that I want to try, especially since half the flavors in any given year are repeats – either my favorites or the favorites of people close to me. (Gotta keep my friends happy!) So I ruthlessly weed out the flavors that aren’t so fantastic – making the next year’s decisions that much harder.
Anyway, here is the current lineup:
Fudges (all favorites from last year):
- Chocolate macadamia (or some other variant of chocolate fudge)
- White chocolate, lavender, Meyer lemon
- Coconut tequila lime
- Coconut almond fudge
Chocolate dipped stuff:
- Bergamot peel
- Meyer lemon peel
- Yuzu peel
- Grapefruit peel in rose geranium syrup
- English toffee
- Jasmine caramels
- Dried apricot
- candied ginger
That leaves 18 slots for the bonbons.
“Classic” flavors first:
- White guava (incredibly fragrant!)
- Strawberry balsamic vinegar (unbelievably good)
- Fig-cognac (one of my faves)
- Black currant/Cointreau
- Vanilla latte
- Jasmine tea
- Caramelized banana
- Pink peppercorn, Buddha’s Hand citron, candied yuzu peel
And, finally, new ideas for this year:
- orange blossom truffles (using orange blossom extract)
- Maple pecan truffles
- Curry pralines
- Salted rosemary caramels with pink sea salt on top
- Ginger yuzu
- Lemon, thyme
- Root beer (with sarsaparilla root)
- Peanut butter & jelly (concord grape or strawberry fruit pate on peanut butter gianduja, dipped in milk or dark chocolate)
- Hazelnut gianduja with raspberry-orange fruit pate
- Coconut-white chocolate gianduja with key lime pate, dipped in milk chocolate with threads of coconut on top
The astute will notice that there are twenty-one flavors of bonbons and only eighteen slots available. That means that at least three will be eliminated in the flavor trials. Which ones? Stay tuned for the next episode of your new reality-based kitchen show: “Survivor: Chocolate”!
The root beer truffles and the rosemary sea salt truffles really intrigue me. Be interesting to see what you do this year — and to live vicariously through all the chocolate. yum.
Whimper, wish I could be there. I don’t suppose you send recipes, but at this high altitude they wouldn’t set up.
Tien Chiu says
Why wouldn’t they set up? They’re not cooked – it’s the cooling cocoa butter that solidifies them, and that shouldn’t depend on altitude.
Of course, it does involve tempering chocolate, which can be tricky, but that’s a totally different matter…