More About the Author
Susie Norris writes about food and culture. She taught baking at Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts and ran an award-winning artisan chocolate business in Los Angeles for 10 years. Her two books are CHOCOLATE BLISS (Random House/Celestial Arts, 2008) and HAND-CRAFTED CANDY BARS (Chronicle Books, 2013).
Prior to her work in the food business, Susie was an executive at NBC, CBS, Disney/ABC and other networks where she supervised television writing and production. She has a B.A. degree in English Literature from Boston College and certificates in professional baking and chocolate work. She is affiliated with the University of Southern California, and is currently at work on her next cookbook.
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From LA Weekly: What's great about this book is its approachability. Hand-Crafted Candy Bars is not another tome on the Art of the Chocolatier or the Art of the Confectioner. Because much as we love Ewald Notter's pastillage technique, most weekends, we'd rather just make chocolate taffy (p. 61), peanut butter-chocolate cups (p. 46) or dark-chocolate dipped almond coconut bars (p. 37), which sound infinitely better than a certain commercial candy with the same ingredients. Another bonus: here, the number of recipes is hardly overwhelming, so making "nut n' nougat" bars on a Saturday afternoon (better yet, on a "sick day") seems completely doable.
The chapter we keep flipping back to is "Candy Bar Basics" with gives you just that -- all the basics you need to make you own bars. These are the building blocks of the recipes in other sections of the book: soft nougat, marzipan, fondant, four versions of caramel (and really, when is one ever enough?), basic toffee, fudge, vanilla cookie dough that works as a good candy bar base, chocolate coatings of various kinds. Many of the candies, say Norris and Heeger, freeze well. Good news if you're having a dessert party, bad news if your afternoon willpower is no stronger than ours.
The authors' personal favorite candy in the book? We're pretty impressed they were able to come to an agreement. The candy is one they have dubbed "molten chocolate peanut bars," little milk chocolate-covered logs filled with pillowy vanilla bean nougat and a layer of crunchy peanut butter-caramel. "It has everything we love in a candy bar - chewiness, nuttiness, sweet-saltiness, and that irresistible chocolate-caramel combo," they say in the recipe Introduction. Next weekend.
In the meantime, we'll be whipping up a little chocolate nougat -- in less than half an hour. Let the candy bar experiments begin. http://blogs.laweekly.com/squidink/2013/03/hand_crafted_candy_bars_book.php
Chocolate Bliss Sensuous Recipes, Spa Treatments, and Other Divine Indulgences Oct 2009 Ten Speed Press Pastry chef, instructor, TV producer, chocolatier, cookbook author and general guru of all things chocolate Susie Norris delivers a gem of a book dedicated to the culture and cuisine her favorite subject. Not only does Norris provide chocolate recipes to sate even the most demanding choco-philes, she offers an introduction to the world of chocolate that opens up the much-loved, if oft underestimated, ingredient to a wider appreciation. Norris wants her reader to get to know chocolate on a more intimate level, whether that reader is pastry chef, fellow chocolatier, or mere enthusiast; she offers instructions on setting up a "tasting flight" for chocolate after the fashion of wine and provides lists of online resources useful for purchasing and further education. In addition to a wealth of savory and sweet recipes featuring chocolate, Norris' book delves into the varieties, origins, and uses of chocolate, as well as its health benefits, gift-giving potential, and topical quotes from fellow chocolate lovers.