Chickens, eggs and nests – must be Easter!

I think Spring is my favourite time of year. It’s full of a welcome warmth, sunshine and pretty new things like flowers. And fresh chocolates.

We’ve been busy here dreaming up new confections for you to celebrate Spring and Easter this year.

Left to right: Malted Milk Egg, Dark Banana Hen, Almond Rocher ‘Nest’, Honeycomb Hen, Speculoos Egg

Malted milk egg
A 40% milk chocolate mini egg, painted by hand with Kokopelli’s signature turquoise-coloured cocoa butter, and filled with a malted milk ganache and wafer pieces

Dark banana hen
A gorgeous little dark chocolate hen, painted by hand and flecked with cocoa butter, filled with freeze-dried banana pieces

Almond rocher ‘nest’
Caramelised, roasted almond slices mixed with milk chocolate and a touch of sea salt

Honeycomb hen
A cute handpainted milk chocolate chicken filled with tiny pieces of honeycomb

Speculoos egg
A handpainted dark chocolate mini egg, filled with a milk chocolate speculoos ganache (speculoos are spiced Belgian biscuits – very Eastery and very delicious)

The Easter Collection is available from our online shop now – and very much limited edition, so place your order soon!

We have gone all out and also made some ‘fried eggs’ for those with a sweet tooth – the yolk is filled with a lemon fondant. Also available on the shop here.

And finally, we’re doing Easter eggs again this year, in dark, milk and white chocolate, all hand-decorated with splashes of coloured cocoa butter. These eggs are available for collection only (please get in touch to arrange).

Happy Easter!

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Valentine’s Collection

Ah, chocolate. My first true love. Chocolate is the perfect gift to celebrate love, and happens to be a great way to show yourself some TLC too. I test this theory every day, and so far, it still holds. I’d better keep checking though…

We have a new, limited edition collection specially for Valentine’s Day – a collection of four caramels, each with different personalities to mirror the different faces love shows.

Left to right: Tonka Caramel, Passionfruit Caramel, Sea Salt Caramel, Cardamom Caramel

There’s our old friend, the Passionfruit Caramel, tangy, witty and fruity-sharp as ever. A soft, not-very-sweet caramel, blended with passionfruit puree, nestled within a fruity dark chocolate shell. Our signature Valentine’s chocolate.

The new Tonka Caramel, a soft, slightly salted caramel, infused with tonka beans. Tonka beans come from the same region as Kokopelli – Central and South America – and they have a taste reminiscent of bitter almond and vanilla. They are truly delicious and well complemented by the soft caramel and creamy milk chocolate. This is a playful chocolate, the flavours dancing together.

Another newbie, the Cardamom Caramel, is infused with both green cardamom and a hint of smoky black cardamom. The spice whispers along your tongue while the soft caramel melts alongside the milk chocolate shell. Sultry and seductive.

And finally, another old favourite, a classic: the Sea Salt Caramel. A soft, rich caramel with a hint of sea salt to cut the sweetness. Housed within a cocoa pod-shaped dark chocolate shell – this is a comforting, soothing chocolate to lift your spirits.

The Valentine’s Collection is available to order now. And don’t forget we can hand-write a love note on our pretty headed paper to be included with your order. Just leave the details in the ‘order notes’ box at checkout.

Happy V-day, chocolate lovers!

Thanks once again to the super-talented Macnifique for the lovely photography.

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Christmas specials 2013

It’s come round so quickly – that festive time of year again. And with it comes some seasonal limited edition chocolates from Kokopelli’s. This year I fancied giving those classic, favourite flavours a bit of a makeover.

And so… drum roll please… I present you with the clementine pate de fruit.

It’s a French-style fruit jelly (vegetarian of course!), made with tangy clementine puree, enrobed in a fruity Madagascan dark chocolate, and decorated with a dot of orange cocoa butter to finish. As you bite into it, the chocolate cracks between your teeth and the soft jelly yields to your tongue. It’s rather delightful, even if I say so myself.

Next up, we have the nutmeg caramel.

nutmeg caramel cut sm

This is a slightly salted soft caramel, infused with freshly grated nutmeg. It is nestled in a dark milk chocolate shell (yup, that’s a milk chocolate with a very high cocoa content, giving you that chocolate hit and milky creaminess all in one delicious mouthful), swirled with pink cocoa butter and a touch of gold lustre. Christmas all wrapped up in a delicate little dome.

These limited edition wintry beauts will feature in our mixed selection box over the holiday period. We will also be at The Chocolate Festival again this year – Friday 13th December through to Sunday 15th December. It’s on the Southbank Centre Square – please do drop by to say hello and support us in the freezing weather!

Happy holidays!

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Pumpkin spice chocolates

I think this chocolate contains the velvetiest ganache I ever made, thanks to the addition of pumpkin. It is positively silky.

A milk chocolate shell burnished with gold contains a caramelised pumpkin ganache, lightly spiced with a sprinkling of nutmeg, cinnamon and ginger. Pumpkin is a subtle flavour, but it lends an autumnal character and the aforementioned silkiness. So soft and pillowy. Mm-mm.

Crunchy leaves of green, gold and auburn, a crisp freshness in the air, scarves and woolly socks, and of course pumpkins – autumn is here!

This seasonal delight is available in our mixed selection box for a short time only until stocks run out. Enjoy!

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New Product: Chocolate Gingers

New product alert!

A love of ginger runs in my family. It went straight down the line, from my ginger-loving grandpa, to my ginger-loving dad, to ginger-loving me. It is thus with great pleasure that I bring you Kokopelli’s latest product: Chocolate Gingers. These truffle-like chocolate covered ginger jewels are doubly gingery. A hunk of juicy candied ginger is dipped by hand into rich and silky dark chocolate, then given a light dusting of ginger-spiced cocoa powder.

Biting into one of these is immensely satisfying – the crack of the chocolate shell gives way to the soft, sweet ginger, followed by a burst of ginger fire.

This is a sweet and warming treat to please the ginger lovers in your life, newly available for sale at Kokopelli’s online shop.

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Love is in the air ♥

The day of love and affection is almost upon us, so what better time to present Kokopelli’s 2013 Valentine’s Collection? Three new flavours have been created specially for this amorous day, and one of our old favourites thrown in for good measure.

Our special Valentine’s Collection contains flavour combinations inspired by human relationships. The flavours correspond to a wide range of emotions and quirks – there’s sweet and tangy passionfruit caramel, smoky and inviting black cardamom, fiery cayenne pepper, comforting roasted hazelnut, sour cherry and sweet almond. All combined with smooth, meltingly delicious Valrhona couverture.

From left to right:
Passionfruit Caramel
Brought back by popular demand, this liquid caramel is sweet and tangy, infused with fresh passionfruits, within a fruity dark shell.

Morello Cherry with Amaretto
Inside this cocoa pod shell hides a soft centre made from morello cherries, with a touch of Amaretto to enhance the flavour.

Roasted Hazelnut
A classic favourite, this white chocolate shell is filled with roasted hazelnuts and milk chocolate, complemented by a touch of sea salt.

Smoky Black Cardamom and Cayenne Pepper
Smooth milk chocolate ganache infused with smoky, earthy black cardamom and a hint of cayenne pepper to tickle your throat, enrobed in dark chocolate and decorated with spiky red lines. My personal favourite because it’s a little unusual.

Each Valentine’s box comes with a beautiful, thick menu card to help you choose which chocolate to eat first.

We also have brand new notepaper on which we can include a handwritten message to your sweetheart (complimentary, of course!). Isn’t it lovely? There’s nothing like fresh, crisp headed notepaper. Yes, clearly I’m one of those that gets excited about stationery.

If you don’t want your Valentine’s chocolates to be sent straightaway, you can place your order now and specify in the order notes section at checkout when you would like them sent. It’s the perfect gift to impress your loved one, or an even better treat for yourself.

Kokopelli’s Valentine’s Collection is available to order at our online shop here.

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Holidays are coming…

The holiday season is almost upon us – I can feel the first excitement and chill of it in the air. Lots of preparations are happening behind the scenes at Kokopelli’s. We have beautiful new boxes, new menus on the way, new seasonal chocolates, and lots of website development work going on – online shopping is now closer than ever!

I’m also excited to announce that Kokopelli’s will have a stall at The Chocolate Festival next weekend – from Friday 7th – Sunday 9th December. It’s at the Southbank Centre and it would be great if you popped by to say hello. It’s a really fantastic event showcasing the country’s top chocolatiers.

So without further ado, I introduce to you our winter specials:

Chai spiced caramels
A soft caramel delicately spiced with cinnamon, cloves, ginger, cardamom and fennel. Housed within a milk chocolate shell decorated with festive purple glitter and a touch of gold lustre.

Quince gems
Dark chocolate gem-shaped shell, striped with quince-coloured cocoa butter. Filled with a milk chocolate ganache, blended with quince puree, my favourite winter fruit with a wonderful perfume.

Pictures of our new boxes, menus and market stall banner to follow…

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Raspberry and cracked black pepper chocolates

These glitzy, shiny gems are made from a beautiful, fruity Madagascan chocolate with real character. Their pink flecks give a hint at the flavour of their filling, and were today described as ‘mini planetariums’, which I thought was lovely. Inside their colourful shells hides a firm ganache, bursting with tangy raspberries and rich, dark chocolate. As the centre quickly melts away you are left with a kick on your tongue from the freshly ground black pepper. Fruity, tangy, sharp, rich and peppery all in one mouthful. Oh, and they are dairy-free too – bonus.

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Ginger chocolates – a makeover!

It’s official – the ginger truffles have become ginger triangles.

Although the rustic-looking, beautifully imperfect old style truffles were a firm favourite, the new three-sided ginger choc is definitely an improvement. Don’t they look positively regal on the marble board?

The round truffles, with their thin milk chocolate shell didn’t travel very well; milk chocolate is softer than dark, meaning it’s easier to break, especially going through the rough and tumble of our good old Post Office. So, they now have a sturdier triangular shell.

I’ve also given the recipe an uplift. Sadly, though it was delicious, the old recipe had a very short shelf life of just a couple of weeks. This just isn’t practical. All of Kokopelli’s chocolates have a relatively short shelf life (certainly compared to mass-produced chocolates) of around one month, due to their fresh ingredients. Now, the new ginger triangle can join them. I refuse to use artificial preservatives to give shelf life a helping hand, so instead it now has a little butter and a glug of The King’s Ginger, a warming ginger liqueur with a great story. “Rich and zesty, the liqueur was created to stimulate and revivify His Majesty Edward VII during morning rides in his new horseless carriage – a Daimler.”

The chocolates are still studded with tiny pieces of crystallised ginger, within a dark chocolate ginger-infused ganache. They still have their lovely rich milk chocolate shell, and are still crowned with that signature cube of crystallised ginger. They’ve just had a thoughtful makeover and are all the happier for it.

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Hot chocolate

Such cold, wet, miserable weather on a June summer’s day calls for warm, comforting hot chocolate.

The best thing about this recipe, and making it yourself, is that you can easily adapt it to suit your own tastes. I made mine with spices that you might find in a masala chai to make a masala hot chocolate, but you could leave these out, or just use cinnamon for example.

I also used a chocolate with 50% cocoa solids for a rich but milky taste – however, you can use any kind of chocolate you like, as long as it’s good quality.

And finally, I used semi-skimmed milk, but you could use soya milk, almond milk or even water for a vegan option. Sometimes I like to use mint tea in place of the milk for a lighter, minty hot chocolate. You can get really creative here!

2 cups (550ml) milk or other liquid
100g chocolate, chopped finely
½ cinnamon stick (optional)
6 cardamom pods, cracked (optional)
1 clove (optional)
¼ tsp fennel seeds (optional)
¼ tsp ground ginger (optional)

Heat the milk over a low heat (with all the spices, if using) until almost boiling. Let infuse for at least 10 minutes if using spices. Meanwhile, melt the chocolate in a bain marie. Pour over a third of the spiced milk through a sieve onto the chocolate. Whisk briskly from the centre out to emulsify the chocolate with the milk until smooth, then pour the rest of the milk in and whisk well to combine. Pour into pretty glasses and dream of sunnier days.

Serves 2.

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