The New Zealand Chocolate Festival (NZCF) will bring more than one and a half tonnes of chocolate to Wellington in August, tempting its residents to dip their digits in the sweet stuff.
Chocolate lovers will get a chance to make their own chocolate truffles under expert guidance in the festival's brand new Heilala Vanilla Chocolate Factory.
NZCF director Frank Stoltenberg says that along with spectacular demonstrations from the New Zealand Pastry Team and some of New Zealand's top chocolatiers, this year people will start to appreciate the art of working with chocolate not only by seeing but by doing.
"We want to bring everyone a step closer to discovering what it takes to work with this much loved but highly temperamental ingredient.
"Our chefs will prepare gallons of creamy chocolate ganache, which factory visitors will get to shape with their own hands into one of the oldest known types of chocolate indulgences - the classic chocolate truffle. After coarsely coating the truffles with cacao powder or ground nuts, they will be welcome to take them away or eat them on the spot if temptation proves too much to resist.
"Of course, everyone will walk away with the recipe so that they can continue to make truffles with family and friends at home."
Swiss master chocolatier, Rene "Choco" Fellmann, will be in charge of the make shift factory, sharing his knowledge and passion for quality chocolate.
"Real chocolate only has cacao butter and no other added fat. Cacao butter is remarkable because it is solid at 27 degrees Celsius and completely liquid above 33. It is this transformation from solid to liquid over only 6 degrees that gives us the sensational melt-in-the-mouth feeling we all love."
Having worked with chocolate in Switzerland and New Zealand for more than 34 years, Rene says that "If chocolate is consumed in moderation, as a treat, it will never interfere with body shape but just give you a happy lifestyle."
This is surely great news for the four thousand visitors expected to enjoy this three day festival of pure chocolate indulgence between 24 - 26 August at Hotel InterContinental.
Visit chocolatefestival.co.nz to purchase tickets and find out more.
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