A delicious chocolate bar filled with milk and mince pie ganache with a cute santa's belt decoration.
Sweet milk ganache
150g double cream
Heat the cream, glucose, vanilla and the pod then leave to infuse for 1 hour.
Bring the mixture back up to the boil and pour over chocolate (remove vanilla pod).
Allow the mixture to sit for a few moments to melt the chocolate.
Slowly start to work the mixture together with a spatula.
Once the mixture starts coming together, mix with a hand blender to create emulsion.
Once the mixture reaches 35°C add the softened butter and blend to emulsify.
Cool to 29°C before placing in a piping bag.
Mince pie ganache
200g double cream
Heat the cream, glucose and mincemeat and bring to the boil. Pour the mixture over the chocolate and allow to sit for a few moments to allow it to melt the chocolate.
Use a hand blender to emulsify the mixture.
Add the cognac and blend again to fully incorporate.
Cool the mixture to 30°C before placing in a piping bag.
Preparing the mould
Make up red, gold and black cocoa butter colours and temper them.
Always start with a clean and polished mould.
For this design and technique I used low tack masking tape to place down into the mould to get the block colours.
Start with the gold buckle then, once that has set, adjust the masking tape lines to do the black belt.
Remove all masking tape from the mould and use a glass cloth to clean out any run of colours.
Then take the red cocoa butter and an airbrush and spray the mould for complete coverage.
Leave the mould to set before spraying again to achieve a bolder colour.
Now move on to creating the shell: Temper 1kg of the milk chocolate, use a piping bag to fill each cavity to the top, tap to remove any air bubbles before turning over and tapping again to remove all excess chocolate.
Scrape over the mould to clean and remove any remaining chocolate.
Then place the mould face down on to greasproof paper to allow to set evenly.
After 5 minutes place into the chocolate fridge to allow to crystallise.
Pipe the sweet milk ganache into the chocolate shell just under halfway.
Leave the sweet milk ganache to set for 1 hour.
Pipe the mince pie ganache on to the back of the sweet milk ganache leaving 2mm from the top of the mould.
Leave the mould overnight between 14-16°C to fully crystallise before capping.
To cap the chocolates
Gentle heat the surface of the mould with a heat gun.
Take the tempered chocolate and pipe chocolate on to each cavity, tap the remove any air bubbles then scrape across the mould to achieve a smooth finish.
Turn the mould around and pipe some more chocolate and scrape across the mould again, this will help to fully ensure a flat finish.
Leave the mould to crystallise again for 30 minutes in the chocolate fridge.
The bars are now ready to turn out and enjoy.
Recipe by Samantha Rain, Development Chef, Henley Bridge