• Milk and white chocolate crumb (Camellia Aebischer)Source: Camellia Aebischer
Whoever said to be careful when melting chocolate didn’t know what they were missing out on.
Camellia Ling Aebischer

4 Jun 2021 - 12:27 PM  UPDATED 4 Jun 2021 - 12:27 PM

Imagine ice cream with crunchy little caramelised nuggets of biscuit that never go soggy – or a warm chocolate brownie with a textured topping reminiscent of milo.

With this quick chocolate trick, you can make a tub full of malty chocolate or sweet caramel crumb for as much as it costs to buy a block of Dairy Milk, and it all starts with doing everything the wrong way.

You know the old chocolate disaster that happens when melting chocolate gets overheated and it seizes? Well, you want to make that happen on purpose – then take it a little further by doing this over higher heat, like in a frying pan instead of a double boiler. That way you can toast the sticky, chunky mess into a dry crumble, perfect for adding to nearly any baked good where chocolate is welcome.

Just try not eat all of these straight from the tub.

It may sound a little crazy, but the process works (I picked up the technique from a chef at a former job).

All you’ll need to make the crumb is some chocolate, a pan and a spatula to stir. This works with both white and milk chocolate (I haven’t tried dark yet), and if you use white you’ll be greeted with a deep toasty brown butter-caramel biscuit flavour.

Let it ‘burn’

Throw your chocolate into the pan on medium heat and stir until melted. Sit for a moment until the bottom becomes browned and it starts to change in texture (this will be dramatic with the white chocolate).

Working quickly, stir the clumpy mix until it all seizes into a crumb form and keep stirring/shaking the pan until you see the colour darkens slightly being careful not to burn it. If it’s still looking a bit sticky that’s ok, it’ll harden as it sets.

White chocolate crumb below, milk above. The caramel goop is what happens if you stir too much at the first stage.

Turn off the heat and tip the chocolate onto a chopping board or piece of baking paper and let cool completely. If you want smaller pieces, chop them up a bit. You can also control this in the stirring step, breaking up the chunks as desired.

It’ll keep stored in an airtight container easily for weeks. Goes great on ice cream, baked in cakes/cookies/brownies/buns, stirred through chocolate spread or just used as a dessert garnish.

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