Sweets for your Sweetie

Valentine’s Day is around the corner and if you are looking for last minute gift ideas then we’ve got you covered. Nothing says, ” Will you be my valentine ?” like a gift from the heart or chocolates. These heart-shaped chocolates created by international chocolatier and California prunes spokesperson Paul A. Young are the perfect gift. Impress your loved ones with these bite-size treats.

Paul Winch-Furness / Photographer

California Dried Plum Valentine Heart Chocolates By Paul A. Young


 * You will need a heart shaped mold for making individual chocolates

For the filling – Ganache:

325g Valrhona caramelia chocolate
125mls milk
87g Valrhona Pecan praline paste
35g Light Muscovado sugar
15 drops Essential Oil of Orange

Bring the milk, sugar, pecan praline to the simmer and whisk well
Pour it onto the caramelia chocolate and whisk until smooth
Add the orange oil and mix well
Allow the ganache to cool until it is fully cold. This will take about 2 hours

For the California Prune puree:
Blend together 100g of California Prunes (pitted) with 4 tablespoons of warm water

For the California Prune layer:
100g California Prune puree

For the heart shell:
400g 66% Valrhona Caraibe couverture

For the decoration:
Metallic scarlet edible pigment



 Using an artist’s paint brush apply a small amount of the scarlet powder into the bottom of each of the heart moulds
Melt the chocolate in a bain marie to 55°c and allow to stay warm and melted for a couple of hours. This will ensure a shiny and smooth finish to your chocolates
Temper the chocolate and line each mould with tempered chocolate making sure you tap the mould to eliminate any air bubbles
Tip out all the excess chocolate to leave a chocolate lined cavity
Place this in the fridge for 15 minutes
Using a piping bag squeeze a small mount of the puree into each lined heart
Then fill another piping bag with the cooled ganache and fill the heart just below the top and tap the mould to level
Leave the mould overnight to set
Now melt and temper the chocolate again and seal the bottoms of the chocolates by scraping along the mould to give a flat surface, sealing in all the ganache and California Prune puree
Allow to set for 30 minutes then turn the mould carefully to release the chocolates out of their moulds
They will only release if the chocolate has been correctly tempered
Keep in a cool dry place and enjoy within seven days
Allergens – Milk, Nuts, Soya



Prunes are now the only natural, whole and dried fruit to achieve an authorised ruling by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA). Eating 100g California Prunes daily contributes to normal bowel function as part of a healthy, balanced diet and lifestyle. Prunes are naturally fat and saturated fat free, high in vitamin K and potassium and a good source of manganese and vitamin B6


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