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Willie's Cacao
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Cooking with Couverture chocolate

We are immensely proud that so many professional chefs and bakers choose to use Willie’s Cacao couverture chocolates. Ottolenghi has been making his brownies from our Rio Caribe 72% dark chocolate for many years, while Marco Pierre White has made some of his most iconic desserts from our Chulucanas 70% dark chocolate with its beautiful raisin and plum notes.  

And what is the secret weapon in a Masterchef final? Yes, our chocolate  has twice been used to make the winning dessert.  Lisa Snowdon’s Chocolate Tart with crème fraiche and sour cherries was a show stopper in the Celebrity Masterchef 2022 final… another hit for our Rio Caribe!   

So why does Willie’s Cacao make some of the best couverture chocolate? 

Depth of flavour: Top chefs spend their lives striving for the finest flavours, which is why chocolate craft made from the finest beans hits the mark. Our chocolate is known for its incredible depth of flavour. We achieve this by controlling every step of the process, ‘bean to bar’. In particular we conche for up to 3 weeks to protect the precious flavour notes of our beans, compared to industrial chocolate that is made in a few hours at high temperatures.  

Nothing artificial: Our chocolates never contain vanilla or lecithin, so they are a completely clean palette for chefs to work on. We use completely natural ingredients – nothing muddies the pure flavours of our beans. If a chef wants vanilla in their recipe they can add it, but we don’t let it in through the back door with the chocolate.  

This is particularly noticeable in our Couverture White Chocolate, which is the perfect carrier of delicate flavours in desserts and chocolates. It is a remarkable chocolate, not too sweet, with soft cacao and caramelised notes coming from the natural (not de-odourised) cocoa butter and raw cane sugar.  

Single estate chocolates with distinct flavour profiles for different uses: Our couverture chocolates are all made with different single estate cacaos. This means they each have distinct charismatic flavours that perfectly pair with different ingredients. So for example the smooth nutty notes of Las Trincheras 72% make it perfect for baking and Rio Caribe 72% pairs perfectly rums and cognacs in desserts and truffles.  

We have even been known to custom make couverture chocolates for specific recipes, getting exactly the right flavour notes and sugar level.  

Making chocolate truffles with couverture chocolate

Allergy free chocolate: The professional kitchen now has to be super aware of food allergies and intolerances. So what is increasingly known as Allergy Free Couverture Chocolate helps manage this. Willie’s Cacao couverture chocolates contain no soya or gluten, and we have dairy free milk and white chocolates.  

Vegan Couverture Chocolates – dark, milk and white: All the Willie’s Cacao dark couverture chocolates are dairy free and suitable for vegans, but we now have Surabaya 42% Vegan Couverture Milk Chocolate and 36% Vegan Couverture White Chocolate . Both of these are oat based and have our characteristic depth and purity of flavour. 

Ethically sourced: All our beans are sourced direct trade, which means we buy them directly from the farmers paying a higher price premium than Fairtrade. Since Willie himself is a cocoa farmer, we put naturally put the interests of the farmers at the heart of how we do business. We have very long standing relationships with all the small farming groups we work with. They grow cacao the traditional way under shade trees so supporting bio-diversity, and without using pesticides or other chemicals. To ensure there is no contamination, we get a third party laboratory to test all the cacaos for chemicals when they arrive.  

Versatility: Willie is fond of saying that there is a chocolate for everything. Couverture chocolate is used for baking, desserts, ice creams, ganache, truffles, coating, moulding and much more. For some of these you need a light chocolate like Sur del Lago 70 that allows other ingredients to shine, and for others you are looking for distinct flavours. We even have two different couverture milk chocolates: the more intense Surabaya 54% with caramel notes and the classic Rio Caribe 44% with nutty notes.  

To order trade samples or for trade prices please email or call 01884 840650.

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