DECADENT DELIGHTS for Valentine’s Day at the Waldorf Astoria in Jerusalem.
(photo credit: MIRI SHIMONOVITZ)
Chocolate is one of the most beloved foods in the world, no matter what the weather. But in the chilly days of winter there's always a desire to enjoy comfort foods and for the month of February the Waldorf Astoria in Jerusalem is getting in the spirit by adding two special chocolate- based desserts to their restaurant menus. But not just any chocolate desserts – the hotel teamed up with Valrhona, the premium French chocolate manufacturer, to develop two show-stopping dishes.
Muriele Benaroch, a French pastry chef and chocolatier with Valrhona, flew to Israel to partner with the Waldorf’s own head pastry chef, Claude Bensimon, to dream up the chocolate confections.
Benaroch – with help and translation from Bensimon – demonstrated for a group of hungry journalists and industry figures earlier this week just how two of the desserts are created and plated. The two specialties – versions of which will go on the hotel’s menus – are a cocoa-tinted meringue bowl filled with a strawberry and raspberry coulis and topped with a swirl of whipped chocolate ganache; and a mini sponge cake soaked in a berry- flavored syrup and served under a dollop of airy chocolate cream.
The Waldorf Astoria sources most of its chocolate from Valrhona, one of the most high-end chocolatiers in the world. But because of the hotel’s high kashrut standards, they only import the company’s dark chocolates, since any dairy products must come from within Israel. But that doesn’t stop the hotel from creating an array of impressive chocolate-themed desserts for both its meat and dairy restaurants – in February and all year round.