‘Queen of chocolate’ Kirsten Tibballs shares her tips to nailing the perfect dessert

‘Queen of chocolate’ Kirsten Tibballs shares her tips to nailing the perfect dessert

The pastry chef and chocolatier Kirsten Tibballs has shared her tips to nailing the perfect dessert, and the mistakes all home cooks make when it comes to making something sweet.

The so-called ‘Queen of Chocolate’ revealed the most important things to remember when making dessert is that you should prepare something in advance of your guests arriving for minimal stress and you ought to aim ‘for at least three textures’, as texture is as important as flavour.

Kirsten also shared with FEMAIL her recipe for an easy baked chocolate mousse cake, and the chocolate hacks she loves the most.

The pastry chef and chocolatier Kirsten Tibballs (pictured) has shared her tips to nailing the perfect dessert

The pastry chef and chocolatier Kirsten Tibballs (pictured) has shared her tips to nailing the perfect dessert

The so-called 'Queen of Chocolate' said the most important thing to remember with desserts is that there are 'three different textures' (her easy baked chocolate mousse cake pictured)

The so-called ‘Queen of Chocolate’ said the most important thing to remember with desserts is that there are ‘three different textures’ (her easy baked chocolate mousse cake pictured)

What are Kirsten’s top tips for preparing desserts? 

First up, the chef said it’s a good idea to make a dessert that can be prepared before any kind of event or dinner party.

‘I always like to prepare a dessert that can be completed before any guests arrive, as it gives me more time to enjoy the evening,’ Kirsten told Daily Mail Australia.

‘I also think it can be a good idea to prepare something that can be easily shared like cheesecake or pavlova, as you can put it in  the middle of the table and people can help themselves to as much or as little as they want.’

Kirsten recommends that you ‘always aim for three textures in a dessert as texture is equally as important as flavour’.

‘I have a simple espresso coffee ice cream I make for example, but I always add in chocolate chips and crushed chocolate biscuits to ensure I not only have a delicious flavour, but great texture too,’ she said.

'Always heat chocolate in the microwave for 30 seconds at a time stirring it in between until it's all melted to avoid burning it,' Kirsten (pictured) said

‘Always heat chocolate in the microwave for 30 seconds at a time stirring it in between until it’s all melted to avoid burning it,’ Kirsten (pictured) said

What are the top mistakes home cooks make when handling chocolate in dessert?

On the other hand, there are plenty of mistakes home cooks make when cooking with chocolate, the first and foremost of which is burning it.

‘Always heat chocolate in the microwave for 30 seconds at a time stirring it in between until it’s all melted to avoid burning it,’ she said.

‘Keep your chocolate well-stored when you are storing it, so it doesn’t absorb moisture, or it will be thick when you go to melt it.’

The chef recommends you always use good quality chocolate that contains cocoa butter instead of vegetable fat where you can.

This will automatically improve the standard of your desserts.   

‘I love the classic combination of coffee and chocolate,’ Kirsten added.

‘I have recently been using the Jura Z10 coffee machine to create a cold brew, which I am incorporating into my classic tiramisu recipe with great results.

‘But I do have a new favourite dessert every week.’ 

'One of my favourite things to do with chocolate is pour melted chocolate on ice to create coral chocolate once the ice melts,' Kirsten (pictured) said

‘One of my favourite things to do with chocolate is pour melted chocolate on ice to create coral chocolate once the ice melts,’ Kirsten (pictured) said

What are Kirsten’s top dessert hacks for cooking with chocolate?

Finally, the ‘Queen of Chocolate’ shared her top chocolate dessert hacks, and she said there are ‘so many’ for those wanting to try them out.

‘One of my favourite things to do with chocolate is pour melted chocolate on ice to create coral chocolate once the ice melts,’ Kirsten said.

‘It makes a delicious and very pretty table centrepiece that is edible.’

She also likes to cut circles out of baking paper and then spread chocolate on them, before freezing the circles.

‘When you bring biscuits out of the oven, you could then drop a disc of frozen chocolate on top of them to create a delicious topping with no fuss.’

How to make Kirsten Tibballs’ easy baked chocolate mousse cake 

One cake serves 8-10

Preparation: 45 minutes

Cooking: 15 minutes

Skill level: Intermediate 

INGREDIENTS 

500g good quality dark chocolate

2tbsp golden syrup

Kirsten shared the simple recipe (pictured) with FEMAI

Kirsten shared the simple recipe (pictured) with FEMAI

125g unsalted butter

4 eggs, room temperature

1tbsp caster sugar

1tsp vanilla bean paste

1tbsp plain flour, sieved

130g good quality milk chocolate, roughly chopped

30ml coffee, Jura Espresso

METHOD 

1. Grease and line a spring-form cake tin or ring, 180-190mm in diameter. If using a ring, cover the base with foil.

2. Heat the oven to 200 degrees Celsius, fan forced.

3. Melt the dark chocolate, golden syrup and butter in the microwave. Set aside.

4. Place the eggs and sugar into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment. Whisk on high speed for approximately 10 minutes, until light and thick.

5. Gently fold the sieved flour into the egg mixture.

6. Pour the melted chocolate mixture over the whipped eggs and fold through.

7. Lastly, gently fold through the chopped milk chocolate before transferring the mixture into the prepared baking tin.

8. Bake in the pre-heated oven for approximately 15 minutes. Check the cake half-way through baking, if the top of the cake is browning too quickly, turn the oven temperature down slightly.

9. Once baked, allow to cool in the tin at room temperature.

10. Use the espresso function on the Jura Coffee Machine to produce 30ml of espresso and brush over the cake.

11. Serve immediately or refrigerate overnight.

Source: Kirsten Tibballs 

Kirsten Tibballs has partnered with JURA to create delicious chocolate and coffee-inspired desserts in the new machine.

The JURA Z10 is available now for an RRP $4,150 online as well as selected electrical retailers, department stores, independent and specialty outlets.


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