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Couture Chocolate: A Masterclass in Chocolate Hardcover – November 1, 2011


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Aurum Press (November 1, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1906417598
  • ISBN-13: 978-1906417598
  • Product Dimensions: 10.7 x 8.4 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #630,980 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"William’s talent and expertise were evident from the early days spent with me at Le Manoir aux Quat Saisons. His chocolates and patisseries are like no other—he was one of the first to produce such incredible and innovative creations outside of France. I am thrilled that he has excelled professionally in this field."  —Raymond Blanc


"William has that terribly rare thing—the determination to succeed born out of hard work. Most young chefs want to be famous more than just being good at what they do. William never takes shortcuts. He so deserves his success."  —Marco Pierre White


"[An] inspiring, artfully photographed cookbook featuring exquisite confections worthy of a display case."  —Library Journal
 
 


"[A] masterclass that unveils all the techniques and secrets a chocolate lover could wish for, before moving on to the mouth-watering array of recipes—like Thyme and Honey Filled Chocolates and Madagascan Chocolate Ice Cream."  —Desserts Magazine


"This is one of those cookbooks I just want to sit down and read from cover to cover all in one night."  —Blogcritic.org


 "This book will be the queen of your coffee table books"  —San Francisco Book Review.com

From the Back Cover

A wide variety of chocolate creations from one of the world’s leading chocolatiers.

Truffles and couture chocolates infused with classic and original ingredients such as Japanese black vinegar, lemongrass & ginger, apricot & wasabi and sea salt caramel.

Unique insight into the world of the master technician, with recipes tailored for the home cook to create chocolate bars and bites, bouchées, patisseries, and cakes and biscuits.

Exquisite ingredients and stunning photography elevate the process of chocolate making to an art. All key chocolate-making techniques are illuminated with step-by-step photography as well as inside knowledge from a chocolatier par excellence.

“William’s talent and expertise were evident from the early days spent with me at Le Manoir aux Quat Saisons. His chocolates and patisseries are like no other – he was one of the first to produce such incredible and innovative creations outside of France. I am thrilled that he has excelled professionally in this fi eld.” Raymond Blanc

“William has that terribly rare thing - the determination to succeed born out of hard work. Most young chefs want to be famous more than just being good at what they do. William never takes shortcuts. He so deserves his success.” Marco Pierre White

“William worked for me whilst I was at The Savoy as my Chef Patissier, heading up a team of 21 pastry chefs. The role defi ned William as a patissier, as his experience in the hotel and restaurant world went on to give him the confi dence required to set up his own shops. William is one of the best patissiers in the business.” Anton Edelmann
--This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

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The book is beautiful with a lot of pictures and explains step by step.
Fernanda Q. Carvalho
A great gift for anyone who loves to bake or is interested in chocolate or getting into the profession of pastry arts.
MYREVIEW
If I get time this week I will take some quick pics and post them because seeing is truly believing.
Bre

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

45 of 53 people found the following review helpful By Bre on March 18, 2012
Format: Hardcover
As a female and well, as a human, I never met a chocolate I didn't like but I am also clueless about chocolate. My biggest chocolate moment was when my mother visited me when I lived in NYC and wanted me to drive her to Hershey Pa to see where her Hershey Kisses came from. We did, we took the tour and the whole shabang but I still never let it sink in that creating all different forms of cocoa I have popped in my mouth over the years are a lot of hard work and effort and I took them for granted, then I got this book.

It was a first for me. I love home cooking and love cookbooks, not just to make new recipes but to read and to learn as much as I can about food. But I have never delved into any forms of chocolate. I am not gonna lie, I can't walk by a good chocolate shop without dropping a fair amount of money and would probably kick anyone in the shin if they tried to take my last salted caramel but I've never really given it a lot of thought on how to make my own or any form of creating squat with chocolate. I came across this book after the holidays with a sale with a popular cookbook book club and they had a $10 sale if you bought so many books. Like I could pass up that deal. I will take to my grave how much $ I spent but it landed me more cookbooks than I need for the entire of 2012. Not that that is gonna make any difference as I just ordered a new cookbook on macarons, but this is by far my favorite. I have tried several "recipes" I cringe to even call them recipes because they are truly magnificent creations that just make me happy and have allowed me to give some very ingenious gifts in the past couple of months.

To just list my favorite recipes isn't enough on this.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By George Erdosh on March 30, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Couture Chocolate is a very unusual cookbook. The cookbook was prepared for the British market but, thankfully, the publisher added measurements, food and equipment terms U.S. bakers also understand. This is a large-format, lavishly produced book using a photographer whose food photography should be in art galleries; every one of them is stunning and beyond mouth-watering. This book will make the queen of your coffee table books.

This is not a book for the casual baker. Only highly experienced bakers and professionals will be able to reproduce the recipes and only those familiar with the finicky field using chocolate. The 10-page introduction helps to familiarize you with the intricacies of working with chocolate. Even with experience, you will be spending hours in the kitchen but the end result (if successful) will be spectacular. Many series of small photos help you go through the steps of recipes. The layout of the book is excellent. Head notes, if they appear, are brief and instructive. Each recipe lists equipment needed. Many recipes require previous preparations. Ingredients are generally available but some will be hard to find (e.g. yuzu, matcha). A useful ingredient and equipment list appears before the index. (As reviewed for Sacramento/San Francisco Book Review.)
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Michele on June 8, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I am now examining this book for the first time, after having ordered it. I have not tried any recipe in it yet. I have never seen a book like this. This book primarily teaches people on how to make professional chocolates (as in individual pieces - filled ones, bite-sized morsels, but also bars, cakes, mousses, pastries, and all kinds of chocolate treats). I didn't actually have an interest in that particularly when I bought it; I am wanting to learn all things technical about chocolate, so I took a chance on it. However, I think the book has pretty much sold me on trying to do what the book tries to teach you - how to make chocolates and chocolate treats. They are incredibly appetizing - as in other-worldly. The photographs also are phenomenal. You are going to be pretty much begging for these things once you see the pictures. There are lot of photos of steps along the way of making the recipe, plus the finished item - close up. The text is highly readable and steps are clearly marked and well-explained. It is really an exceptional book in every respect. Pretty much every recipe looks appetizing and devourable - no matter your taste. These things are so delectable-looking that I don't know how they could not taste fabulous. The quantity of every ingredient is listed in three ways: grams, oz and units (ie egg yolks: 125 g / 4-1/2 oz / about 6 eggs). Needed equipment is clearly identified. Complicated recipes are so well broken-down that they actually seem achievable for the confident, practiced cook, even though looking at the pictures of the finished product, I would never dream of trying otherwise. There are 9 pages of text, plus a few pages of photos only, that address "chocolate basics.Read more ›
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Robbin Warner on November 24, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Fine artisan chocolates should look as beautiful as they taste. Willam Curley's Couture Chocolate: A Masterclass in Chocolate takes it a step further moving artisan chocolates from culinary creations to five-star food artistry.

From the first page to the last, the exquisite photographs are a rare treat in chocolate as fine art. Photographer Jose Lasheras redefines chocolate photography in his exquisite staging of the chocolates. His culinary choreography tells stories of taste, texture, color and shape. I found myself wanting to reproduce the staging of the photographs with my own chocolates the way a person reproduces the paintings of the great masters to learn their technique.

For me, pretty pictures alone do not justify buying a cookbook. When it comes to Couture Chocolates amazing photographs are merely one of its assets. This book is equal parts art book, recipe book, and first-rate instruction manual.

The book begins with a chapter titled "Chocolate Essentials" that lays out the basics of working with fine chocolate. Topics include a clear and concise explanation of the different types of chocolates as well as sections with tips on tasting chocolate and advice on shelf life and storage. There is even a sidebar addressing the differences between making chocolates in a commercial kitchen versus a home kitchen.

What makes this chapter standout are the sections on tempering chocolate and making a basic ganache. I would go so far as to say they are worth the price of the book. Because tempering and making a basic ganache are two of the most important skills involved in making fine chocolate desserts, one cannot underestimate the importance of their mastery.
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