Couture Chocolate by William Curley

Author's Bio:

William has worked in many illustrious kitchens, including Gleneagles, La Tante Claire (and Pierre writes the forward for the book), in Le Manoir aux Quat' Saison, L'Esperance, and The Savoy.  At The Savoy he met his wife Suzue, and together they have gone on to win numerous awards, including the Pastry Chef of the Year, British Dessert of the Year and four Best British Chocolatier accolades.

They have two established chocolate shops, one with a chocolate making school downstairs.

The book is broken down into:

An Approach to Chocolate   |  Chocolate Essentials | Truffles  |  Couture Chocolates  | Bars & Bites |  Bouchees  |  Cakes and Biscuits  |  Patisserie  |  Ice Cream, Sauces & Drinks

The Concept:

This book aims to teach both newcomers to chocolate making, and advances amateur chocolate makers, providing inspiration, tips, unusual ingredients and refreshing combinations.  William also shares some of his most popular recipes from the shop, and from chocolate competitions, showing how to achieve the best results.
I have several chocolate books, but I think this is my current favourite.  William breaks everything down into step by step guides, showing you exactly how to achieve good results for tempering your chocolate (without a tempering machine).  William then shows you how to combine various ingredients into hand-made chocolates, moulded chocolates, bars, lollipops, even cakes, brioche, macaron and drinks.  The book is clear, and most interesting from my point of view, actually makes you consider different flavour combinations for yourself.  Perhaps I'm just at this stage of my chocolate making, but I found my mind wandering off into all manner of flavour variations.  If you're an experience chocolate maker, I can't imagine it changing your technique management much, but I think it's worth seeing his flavour combinations first hand.  William also does show layering techniques, which I don't think is covered in as much detail in some of my other chocolate books.

Overall, it would make a very good first chocolate book, and is certainly worth considering for those who already own a few books.

You can buy William's book from Amazon >