Lake Macquarie Private Hampers

Chocolate - Perfect in a Fruit Basket

Handsomely presented, a fruit gift basket is sometimes just what you need to lift your spirits
The word chocolate comes from the Mayan word for “warm drink” and hot chocolate was certainly one of the first ways to enjoy the velvet smoothness of chocolate.  The cacao tree (Theobroma cacao) gave us chocolate, but it was only in drink form for the first few hundred years.  In my personal experience, chocolate is simple to overdo or present in excess – so it is in measured small doses that the finest appreciation of chocolate is possible.  Like a few pieces of dark 70% cacao chocolate with a freshly ground coffee.  Now you're talking....

Chocolate is made from the seeds of the cacao beans – they are fermented, dried, roasted and hulled – and then the seed meat is ground down and  and melted to make a paste – a chocolate liquor.  When this hardens it is basically unsweetened cooking chocolate.  This is half cocoa butter and half cocoa solids.  And here is the surprising kicker that sets chocolate apart and gives us all that delicious velvety smoothness – cocoa butter is solid at room temperature but melts in the mouth.

chccolate in a box gift hamper australia
Chocolate adds a delightful creamy silkiness to your fruit hamper

Once unsweetened cooking chocolate has sugar, milk, vanilla added it becomes the version of chocolate that we know.  Long massaging known as 'conching” loosens the bind of the chocolate and lends it that velvety texture we all love so much.  The longer the chocolate is kneaded, the smoother the texture and the better quality the most likely more expensive the chocolate will be.

Compound chocolate has a lower content of chocolate liquor and instead other less quality fats in its place.  What you are looking for is couverture chocolate, which has a high gloss and dresses your fruit items like strawberries with a fine, thin film. 

When cooking with chocolate, here's some handy tips

- chop or grate chocolate before melting it.
- all utensils must be completely DRY – no water at all.
- NEVER melt chocolate alone over direct heat

In a Fruit Gift basket, chocolate elevates a get well soon thought into a sensitive gesture that covers the boundary of intimacy and genuine feel good feeling.  Sharing chocolate is an age-old practice that cements relationships and strengthens the bonds that tie families, friends and our futures together.  Making the most of your next chocolate fruit basket sharing occasion is simple using a reputable member of the Australian Fruit Baskets Association – and especially when you choose a recognised award winner with expert knowledge.