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Do you use good chocolate when you bake?

I've been getting partial to Ghirardelli chocolate baking bars in recipes requiring melted chocolate and was wondering if others find that the "premium" chocolates are superior in terms of taste and texture? Also, what baking chocolate do you prefer?

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  1. heck yeah. Callebaut is my favorite, but i like Ghirardelli too.

    2 Replies
    1. re: goodhealthgourmet

      Callebaut is my favorite as well, but I often end up using Lindt as it is readily available near my apartment.

      1. re: MMRuth

        i third callebaut. totally worth the extra $$

    2. Absolutely. I use Trader Joe's -- either the bittersweet pound+ bar if the recipe calls for chocolate, or their fairly new unsweetened baking bar if the recipe calls for "bakers" or "unsweetened" chocolate. The Trader Joe's "Belgian" chocolates are made by Callebaut.

      4 Replies
      1. re: Ruth Lafler

        Really? Wow, that's a good tip to know.

        Thanks Ruth!

        1. re: newfoodie

          Yeah. I was widely rumored, and then confirmed when a batch of TJ's label went out with "Callebaut" stamped on the chocolate -- I guess someone wrapped the wrong batch or forgot to change the mold.

        2. re: Ruth Lafler

          TJ's are my favorites too. If I run out I sometimes use Hershey's Special Dark + unsweetened grocery store chocolate, 6 oz Hershey's to 2 oz unsweetened, but this only in emergencies (and as posted by Paulustrious below, only for things destined for consumption by less picky friends). Also like the French Nestlé chocolat noir in 200 gm bars which I bring home for France or importune friends to bring me.

          1. re: Ruth Lafler

            i suspected as much, but thanks for the confirmation, Ruth!

          2. My local market in SF has Guittard on sale 2-3 times per year. I buy up a bunch of semi sweet. I can use that for most applications by decreasing sugar in the recipe. Callebaut is great but ridiculously expensive...

            1 Reply
            1. re: hankstramm

              I also use Guittard semisweet and made a fantastic chocolate frosting and cake with it using the frosting recipe in Food and Wine February edition. For bittersweet, I use Valrhona. For unsweetened, I used Ghirardelli. Great results with all three.

            2. This sounds snobbish, but it depends on my audience. (Gustatience?)

              If I am making a chocolate mousse for someone who is a hershey bar fan then I don't spend a lot of money. Here in Toronto I get a chocolate imported by Premier Brands. The label says Imported Continental Belgium chocolate - 77% Cocoa.

              300grams is $3 to $4.

              1. For every day baking, I use Trader Joe's. It's too expensive for me to use callebaut or valrhona all the time. For special occasions, I go all out.