The Guittard Chocolate Company is the oldest family-owened chocolate company in the US, founded in 1868 by a French immigrant who set his sights on California during the Gold Rush. Like many miners, Étienne Guittard did not strike it rich with gold, but instead turned to making and selling chocolate to make his fortune. Judging by the continued success of the company, that was a much better choice than continuing to hunt for gold. The company produces all of their chocolate from bean-to-bar, both for consumers and for other food manufacturers (and candy-makers, such as See’s), so you’ve likely eaten some of their chocolate, even if you haven’t seen their products at your local grocery store. Guittard Chocolate Cookbook: Decadent Recipes from San Francisco’s Premium Bean-to-Bar Chocolate Company is a new cookbook from the Guittard that celebrates all things chocolate.
The book opens with an introduction to the company (a bit longer than the one I have summarized here!) and an overview of the chocolate-making process that they use. The company sticks with a lot of their vintage equipment during production, which they say lends a unique flavor to their products. There is also an overview of ingredients, both those made specifically by Guittard (chocolate products) and other important baking items, before you reach the recipes. The recipes are divided into several chapters and includes breakfast treats, cookies, brownies, puddings and confections. The recipes range from everyday treats, such as Chocolate Banana Brownies, to delicate panna cottas. All the instructions are very detailed and clearly walk you through each and every step of the recipe, most of which are accompanied by beautiful photos.
While the company does make high-quality chocolates that will give you excellent results in these recipes, you can use other types of chocolate. If a particular product is not available in your area, you can order it or simply find a substitute (such as a chocolate with a similar cacao percentage). The recipes will satisfy chocolate-lovers no matter what brand goes into them, but bakers who are already fans of Guittard’s products will appreciate the chance to make their favorite chocolate products shine in all kinds of desserts.