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Hot to Choc

According to recent research commissioned by Belgian chocolate maker Callebaut, the UK is a nation of chocolate lovers with 66% of consumers wanting restaurants to offer more chocolate options on their menus. Interestingly, 70% of 18–34–year–olds – an important age group for out–of–home spending – are happy to pay more for their favourite chocolate dessert. The writing is on the wall: alongside your mince pies and Christmas puddings, operators should include chocolate desserts or run the risk of missing out on a dessert order.

It would appear that many foodservice operators are missing a trick by not including enough chocolate–based options on their menus. Callebaut’s research reveals that the average number of chocolate desserts on menus is two, whereas 75% of people would like to see three or even four cocoa–based desserts.

For those in need of guidance, the nation’s favourite chocolate desserts have been revealed as the following, in order of popularity:

Chocolate favourites: 1 brownie, 2 Cheesecake, 3 cake, 4 pudding, 5 ice cream

The research marks the launch of Callebaut’s new ‘For The Love of Chocolate’ campaign, which has been developed to guide caterers through their chocolate choices and ensure dessert menus remain profitable by giving customers exactly what they want. Visit fortheloveofchoc for free advice, recipes and videos.

BrownieChocolate for Christmas

“Christmas is a time when consumers really want to indulge and the clear message coming through from this research is that caterers should be offering more chocolate desserts,” says Robert Harrison, sales director, Callebaut. “We are a nation of chocolate lovers and people clearly want more options.”

The festive season is a huge sales opportunity but caterers are actually limiting the profit potential of their dessert menu by not including chocolate. There is a real ‘disconnect’ between what many consumers want and what’s being provided. Caterers who are able to gear up for this demand will reap the benefits in terms of increased turnover – in fact one of the findings was that 60% of people would be more likely to order afternoon tea if it included chocolate cake and treats. This opens up a real opportunity for restaurants, hotels, cafés and tea rooms during the celebratory period when people are looking for something special.

Triple Chocolate Brownie


185g butter
185g dark chocolate
3 large eggs
275g light brown caster sugar
85g plain flour
40g cocoa powder
50g white chocolate buttons
50g milk chocolate buttons

1. Melt the butter and chocolate together, allow to cool.
2. Whisk together the eggs and sugar in a mixer to a sabayon. Fold in cooled chocolate mixture.
3. Sieve flour and cocoa powder together 3 times. Fold sieved flours into chocolate mixture.
4. Fold in chocolate buttons.
5. Line a 20cm cake tin with a square of waxed paper. Pour mixture into prepared tin and bake at 160°C for 25 mins. 6. Cool in the tin. Cut and serve.

White Chocolate, Rasberry and Lime Cheesecake

Serves 30. To serve: either individually in dishes measuring
6cm (diameter) x 4.5cm (height) or in one 22cm dish.


For the biscuit base

500g digestive biscuits
250g butter

For the cheesecake

200g egg yolks (pasteurised)
405g sugar
1kg cream cheese
9 leaves gelatine
1kg white chocolate
1 litre cream
50g lime zest
Dehydrated raspberries to taste

  1. Blitz the digestive biscuits into fine crumbs. Melt the butter and mix through the crumb until it presses together.

  2. Place the egg yolks and sugar into a machine bowl and whisk to a sabayon.

  3. Beat the cream cheese until smooth, then add into the sabayon.

  4. Soften the gelatine in water, heat up a small amount of the cream and dissolve the gelatine. Add some of the cheesecake mix into the gelatin, then return to the main cheesecake mix.

  5. Melt the white chocolate in a bain marie. Add the hot white chocolate into the cheesecake mix, all in one go, and mix well.

  6. Whip the cream until soft peaks form, then fold in.

  7. Fold through some dehydrated raspberries and the lime zest and pour into the ring.

Chocolate Crumble
Raspberry Glaze

Raspberries100g stock syrup
2 leaves gelatine 100g raspberry puree

  1. Bring stock syrup to the boil.

  2. Soften the gelatine in cold water and then add into the raspberry puree.

  3. Warm the puree slightly then add to the syrup.

  4. Place a thin layer of the glaze on top of the cheesecakes and then set in the fridge.

Lime Syrup

Limes1 lime
100g sugar

  1. Zest the lime with a micro plane and leave to one side.

  2. Juice the lime into a saucepan, saturate with sugar and place on a low heat.

  3. Once the sugar has dissolved (but remains syrupy), take off the heat and strain. Leave to cool before adding the zest.

White Chocolate Crumble

Place some melted white chocolate on silicon paper and put into the oven at 160°C. Cook for 5 minutes then mix with a palette. Place back in the oven and continue cooking until golden brown. Remove from the oven and allow to cool. Break up into small pieces and use as garnish. To serve as a plated dessert:

  • Place the cheesecake in the centre of the plate.
  • Cut the raspberries in half and mix through a small amount of raspberry coulis.
  • Arrange around the plate.
  • Break up some white chocolate crumble and arrange with the raspberries.
  • Drizzle some lime syrup over the fruit.

Recipes courtesy of Beverley Dunkley, head of Chocolate Academy and Julie Sharp, development chef at Chocolate Academy.
For more recipes, visit fortheloveofchoc.

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