Chocolate couverture is the chocolatier’s favourite. Couverture chocolate has a particularly high percentage of cocoa butter to help the chocolate melt and flow well, and create a finer shell of chocolate in a mould. A higher percentage of cocoa butter also gives a rich mouthfeel. Start with a good quality chocolate couverture, a chocolate mould and a thermometer. Always take care to heat and cool the chocolate gently, and never let the chocolate make contact with water.
Freeze dried fruit powders add intense flavour without extra liquid, and cocoa nibs add texture and contrast. Cocoa butter can be flavoured and coloured – though only with colourings that are fat rather than water soluble.