It’s That Time of Year… for Chocolate
After sharing my love for dark chocolate and salt, a friend told me about her obsession with a certain bar of dark chocolate made with Hawaiian sea salt. I was immediately intrigued. When she said it was a Knipschildt bar, I knew I had to get my hands on it. Knipschildt?! That would be Fritz Knipschildt, a young, charming Danish chocolatier, now living in Connecticut, making chocolates with original flavor combinations in beautiful packaging. As is the case for many pastry chefs, Fritz’s background was in the savory side of the kitchen, working in restaurants in Denmark, France, Spain and the US. The transition was quite natural, as he has stated before, “I loved to experiment with sweet and savory flavors and I continued to do so with chocolate.”
But more on his signature line of chocolates in a minute, each one with a different woman’s name by the way. Back to the bar above (and below)!
Burnt Caramel and Hawaiian Sea Salt. Difficult to go wrong there. It’s a hefty bar with deliciously smooth dark chocolate – 71% Ecuadorian single bean. When you break into it, your first reaction may be disappointment, that there’s very little caramel in relation to the chocolate (that was my first thought too). But when you taste that thin layer, the amount of flavor that fills your mouth does not disappoint. It’s a powerful hit of rich chocolate, caramel and strong salt. Just look at the underside of the bar, and you’ll see why. It’s a masterful combination of strong flavors.
If you want to taste the caramel in a more dominant – and runny – form, you should meet Hannah. That’s one of Knipschildt’s chocolates, of course. The same combination of flavors, burnt caramel and Hawaiian sea salt, in an individual praline. My personal favorite of his chocolates in fact. I used to buy his handmande paper boxes when I was living in the states at Dean & Deluca, Whole Foods and Food Emporium in NYC, and at Formaggio Kitchen in Boston. Fortunately, they are easy to find, and come in seasonal colors. Hannah went too fast; I didn’t have a chance to photograph her! But below you’ll see Valentina, another irresistible caramel, this one made with lavender; and Cleopatra, made with raspberry liqueur.