Monday, March 28, 2011

Moody jaffa chocolate pots

D'ya like the dark background? Moody, intense ... chocolatey.

Since getting involved in this food blogging caper, it's been all about colour, atmosphere, balance.  And food photographs. I realise that the words can be just as important, and there are heaps of blogs that can wonderfully evoke the sense of a topic without pictures. This is not such a blog because I spend, oh, roughly twice as much time on the pictures than I do on the words. I am not a wordsmith, though I love to read and am really diligent about grammar (to the point of being all head-prefect bossy about it, though I'm probably gramatically wrong most of the time!).

The focus on photos means almost neverending search for the perfect props and backgrounds for the food pictures.  And it also means having one or two plates of a particular design and having to dine off mismatching crockery - "hey, don't use the good plates, I'm saving those for a photo!". For the backgrounds, I've found I like dark colours to show off food because black makes most colours pop.  Like with these chocolate pots where the mandarin segments become so vibrant. So, do you like the dark background?  I do.

Jaffa Chocolate Pots
serves 4

45g dark chocolate, roughly chopped
250g mascarpone cheese
1 tblsp grated orange zest
mandarin segments, to serve (optional)

1.  Melt the chocolate over simmering water or using the microwave (medium-low heat in 40 second bursts until almost melted).  Cool slightly.
2.  Place the mascarpone into a bowl and add the melted chocolate and orange zest.  Stir until well combined. 
3.  Spoon the mixture into small pots or ramekins and chill for at least 30 minutes.
4.  Serve with mandarin segments or other fruit.

Only 3 ingredients: chocolate, orange and mascarpone.
Thinking I didn't have enough chocolate, I was going to use my dark chocolate Lindt bunny. Fortunately, he did not have to sacrifice his ears.
Combine the mascarpone, melted chocolate and orange.
The mixture is not that smooth; just mix until there are no streaks of mascarpone or chocolate.
Spoon into small pots and chill.
I only have 4 of these pots, so of course I had to use them here.
The mandarin segments (tinned) go beautifully with this rich mousse-like dessert.

See the snazzy slatted placemat? It was a gift to replace the ratty cardboard I normally use.
Thanks to heneedsfood for the advance warning =)


  1. LOVE the dark background, and the appropriate header font and those little glass pots. The colours really pop!

  2. I think your photos are always gorgeous, the colors wonderfully balanced! And I'm glad to know I'm not the only one who forces people to eat off of mismatched plates. Who wants to waste money on multiples of the same dish! I love the chocolate orange combo and these sound delicious!

  3. Love these cute pots and your dark background, Belle. It sets the mood beautifully for these delicious jaffa dessert.

  4. i think your photos look fabulous hehe glad the bunny survived and love the glass pots!

  5. your photos are always so pleasing to my eyes hhaha ;) and the way you style your food is amazing as well :) yea im def no wordsmith either...words give me better numbers or images lol.

    yea, it's hard finding props aye. i've been using the same background cloth since forever haha. at least it seem to go with everythign i make!

    what program do you use to edit your photos and add the fonts? im thinking about (finally) getting a proper software for my post-processing!

  6. Hehe I know what you mean about the endless search for props. In fact when people ask me what I want for my birthday this year I think I'll ask for some props! :P

  7. Dark background! and I have so much mismatched crockery! haha I venture into the op shop once a week (despite going past it every day) to see if there is anything good :P

    I LOVE YOUR little pots!! I want!!

  8. Love the dark background and styling, it makes the picture outstanding.

  9. amazing pictures of mouthwatering desserts! I love the little pots. Where did you purchase them?

  10. re. the glass pots (with lids!) - they are from Bread Top bakery and used to hold milk custard, which is fortunately very delicious, as I had to eat quite a bit to get the 4 pots.

  11. Oh I have to make this! I have to eat this before the day ends! It looks so yummy!

  12. I actually really like your glass pots, so cute and perfect for this setting! Somehow my pictures don't turn up nice with black background, not sure why really... Yours look swell, as usual :)

  13. Lovely cute pots and they look outstanding with dark background!

  14. Oooh - are those pots from... Bread Top or one of those Asian bakeries... I have one (from a custard dessert) - must eat more to collect the jars... :) Love the 'popping' of the mandarin segments

  15. Absolutely classic combo right there of orange and choc.

  16. how funny. My partner always remarks that nothing in out kitchen matches. and I always slap his hand when he accidentally reaches for the "blogging" dishes. these chocolate pots look like heaven in glass.

  17. So these are the Bread Top jars everyone keeps raving on about! And I do agree, the dark background absolutely makes the colour of the mandarin stand out.

  18. Yes, the dark background works really well here!

  19. Gosh... mouth-watering girl! And I like the new background.

  20. Yes, I like the black background and the snazzy placemat but I like the pots most of all. They piss all over the background, just like I'm sure little bunnies would over a nice green grassy background :D

  21. Belle, I admire your food styling and your creativity. Have so much to learn from you. Ever since I started my blog, I am constantly looking for interesting props. Those little glass pots are perfect for the dessert. Brilliant!