Posts Tagged ‘Barcelona’

The ChocolateDoctor’s Catalan Chocolate Cake

Thursday, October 13th, 2016
Ed Engoron, Co-Founder of Choclatique
Author of Choclatique—150 Simply 150 Elegant Desserts, Running Press, 2011

In the 12th century, Catalonia was brought under the same royal rule as the neighboring kingdom of Aragon, going on to become a major medieval sea power. Catalonia has been part of Spain since its genesis in the 15th century, when King Ferdinand of Aragon and Queen Isabella of Castile married and united their realms.

Barcelona was the cultural hub of the Catalan people. Barcelona today is a food lover’s paradise. It’s not all about tapas, fresh-cured olives and wonderful hanging Spanish hams. The city is a mecca for sampling some of the best xocolata (chocolate) in the world. There is nothing better than fresh-lady fingers dipped in a cup of steamy, thick Barcelona-style hot chocolate first thing in the morning.

You can find chocolate of all sorts of chocolate products at Las Ramblas the busy tourist area where it’s hard to resist the cakes and pastries at some of the greatest bakeries in the world. Barcelona is filled with chocolate, with chocolate specialty shops galore and bakeries. There is even a chocolate museum. Museu de la Xocolata is a must see private museum in Barcelona owned by the Gremi de Pastisseria de Barcelona.

Prep time: 15 minutes
Bake time: 20 to 30 minutes
Yield: Serves 6-8

3/4 cup unsalted butter (I use Plugra European-style butter, but you don’t have to)
5-1/2 ounces Choclatique Private Reserve Dark Chocolate, rough chopped
3 large eggs
3/4 cup granulate sugar
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup black cherry preserves, for serving
Crème fraîche, for serving (see recipe below)


  1. Preheat the oven to 375°F.
  2. Lightly butter and dust with cocoa powder a 9-inch round cake pan.
  3. In a large microwave-safe bowl combine the butter and chocolate. Melt the mixture for about 2 minutes in 15 to 30 second increments, stirring frequently, until smooth.
  4. Set aside and let cool slightly.
  5. In a medium bowl, using an electric mixer, cream the eggs with the sugar at high speed until thick and pale, about 4 minutes.
  6. Add the flour and salt and mix at low speed until just until combined.
  7. Using a rubber spatula fold in one-third of the melted chocolate, then gently fold in the remaining chocolate. Do Not Over Mix.
  8. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 20 to 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  9. Invert the cake onto a rack and let cool.
  10. In a saucepan, warm the cherry preserves over moderate heat.
  11. Cut the cake into wedges and serve with the cherry preserves topped crème fraiche or whipped cream.

ChefSecret: When flouring your cake pan use cocoa powder instead of white flour to prevent white streaks at the edges of the cake. For the Black Cherry Preserves I like to use Casa Giulia Amarene. There are also a few wonderful Italian brandied black cheery preserves. Can’t find these, any black cherry preserve will work, just not as well.

Want to make your own Crème fraîche? It’s easy.

Crème Fraîche

1 cup whipping cream
2 tablespoons buttermilk


  1. Combine 1 cup of whipping cream and 2 tablespoons of buttermilk in a glass container.
  2. Cover and let it stand at room temperature (about 70°F) for 8 to 24 hours or until very thick.
  3. Stir well before covering; refrigerate for up to 7 days.

Choclatique on FacebookChoclatique on TwitterChocolate Doctor

The Chocolate of Barcelona

Thursday, June 23rd, 2011
Ed Engoron, Co-Founder of Choclatique
Author of Ed Engoron’s Choclatique, Running Press, 2011

As I was planning my trip to Lisbon, Portugal next week I found that I have a stop-over in Barcelona. What could be better than an afternoon in the old chocolate capital of the world? The harbor of Barcelona was the port into which the very first shipments of cocoa from the New World arrived more than 500 years ago, making it the ideal home to the Museu de la Xocolata—Barcelona’s Chocolate Museum.

The Catalan Capital is a beautiful city with a diverse culture and history and Barcelona’s museums offer visitors a wide range of aesthetic experiences – in fact, they can be seen as a perfect illustration of just how beguilingly this city can be.

Two of Barcelona’s most popular museums are devoted to artists—the works of Joan Miró and Pablo Picasso – the first born in the city and the second generally acknowledged as an adopted son.

The third is the Museu de la Xocolata which is housed in an outwardly unimposing but historical building. From the aroma wafting through the narrow twisted streets lets visitors know to be prepared for an idiosyncratic and glorious celebration of the world’s most famous treat.

Inside the museum the history of chocolate is demonstrated from the discovery of the first cocoa beans brought back by the New World explorers, including Christopher Columbus himself, the progressive history since its origins as a spicy drink to its delight as a French sweet all the way through time to its present predominant position in the commercial world.

There are displays of machines and tools representing the chocolate maker’s art as well as fantastically detailed reconstructions of many of Barcelona’s most famous architectural sites – painstakingly and lovingly recreated from nothing but chocolate. There is even Snowy, an albino gorilla (from whom we named our Snowy White Chocolate) who has been meticulously constructed from white chocolate.

This “delicious” museum demonstrates chocolate’s many different purposes: as a medicinal element, an aphrodisiac, a nutritional treasure and everything in between, both legend and reality. They offer different workshops for children and adults.

Save a little time to stop by the chocolate café and bar where they sell great hot chocolate, thick enough to hold a spoon on its edge in the cup. While enjoying your chocolate, swivel around on your stool and watch the students next door being put through their paces as they try to achieve master status as pasty chefs and chocolatiers.

Old Chocolate Processing MachineThe Museu de la Xocolata is located in the Antiguo Convento de San Agustín at Carrerr de Commerç, 36. It is a pleasant short walk from Arc de Triomf Metro station (Red Line, 1), beginning on the Passeig Lluis Companys or due east of the Metro at Juame 1 (Yellow Line, 4), just a few minutes past the Picasso Museum in the Gothic District.

Choclatique on FacebookChoclatique on TwitterChocolate Doctor