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The Chocolatier’s Process with Chef Maura Metheny

Chef Maura Metheny's Chocolatier Process - Norman Love Confections

A chocolatier is an artist. Chocolatiers are the Porches of Pastry and Dessert Chefs. Creativity, patience and attention to detail are 3 skills that is a must have in their business!

A chocolatier makes confections out of chocolates.

At Norman Love Confections, their passion is exemplified in these words, “the artistry of chocolate means everything to us.”

Their chocolates include gourmet dark, milk and white chocolates, gourmet truffles as well as their ultra premium collection – Norman Love Confections BLACK™, which is their fine dark single-origin chocolate confection. These consists of five chocolates, where the cocoa beans are sourced from the world’s five premium growing regions – Venezuela, Peru, Ghana, Tanzania and Dominican Republic.

Chef Maura and her manufacturing and design teams work on their chocolate creations from molds or by hand and with machines. They carve their own molds and design their own recipes.

On a normal day, their production facility makes over 35,000 pieces in a day and 20 – 25 varieties. Airbrushers starts at 6:30am and production is complete as well as their factory cleaned by 6pm.

Their busiest times of the year are the holiday times between October 1st and January 2nd. The runners up are the weeks of Valentine’s Day, Easter and Mother’s Day.

Outlined below by Maura shows each step of love that goes into what their Chocolatier process looks like.

1. Color the clean and cotton polished interiors of the Poly Carbonate plastic mold with colored cocoa butter from Chef Rubber.

Chef Maura Metheny's Chocolatier Process - Norman Love Confections

2. Apply the second layer of color to the mold cavity, this is a glitter gold colored cocoa butter.

Chef Maura Metheny's Chocolatier Process - Norman Love Confections

3 .Casting the mold is how we create the shell, tempered dark chocolate is poured into the mold.

Chef Maura Metheny's Chocolatier Process - Norman Love Confections

4. The chocolate is cleaned off the face of the mold and leveled with a steel scraper.

Chef Maura Metheny's Chocolatier Process - Norman Love Confections

5. After the air has been tapped out the chocolate is dumped out of the mold leaving a thin layer coating each cavity.

Chef Maura Metheny's Chocolatier Process - Norman Love Confections

6. The excess chocolate is scraped away and the mold is placed face down onto a piece of parchment paper atop a marble or granite polished slab to set.

Chef Maura Metheny's Chocolatier Process - Norman Love Confections

7. After the heat is drawn out of the chocolate from the granite/marble, the chocolate sets enough to be pulled clean from the parchment. Then it is scraped again with the steel scraper and placed in an area to cool between 40-60 degrees Farenheit.

Chef Maura Metheny's Chocolatier Process - Norman Love Confections

8. When the mold is set and each shell is released from the plastic mold, a consistent amount of the cooled cherry jam is piped into each cavity.

Chef Maura Metheny's Chocolatier Process - Norman Love Confections

9. A layer of the cooled Elvesia ganache is then piped on top of the jam. It is important to leave a space about as thick as the chocolate shell above the ganache and not to fill the cavity completely, the mold is chilled between 40-60 Farenheit until set to the touch.

Chef Maura Metheny's Chocolatier Process - Norman Love Confections

10. A final layer of chocolate is poured onto the set filling.

Chef Maura Metheny's Chocolatier Process - Norman Love Confections

11. It is leveled with a steel scraper to seal the ganache inside and the “foot” is allowed to set at room temperature.

Chef Maura Metheny's Chocolatier Process - Norman Love Confections

12. Once set completely, the mold is flipped and one side is tapped onto a parchment covered marble or granite surface to release the chocolates.

Chef Maura Metheny's Chocolatier Process - Norman Love Confections

13. If done correctly, all the chocolate should fall out.

Chef Maura Metheny's Chocolatier Process - Norman Love Confections

14. Perfect chocolates leave the mold cavities shiny, clean and ready to be reused once they return to room temperature.

Chef Maura Metheny's Chocolatier Process - Norman Love Confections

15. Each piece is unique when made by hand like all art.

Chef Maura Metheny's Chocolatier Process - Norman Love Confections

If our Home Chocolatiers would like to try this at home, this process can take 3 – 4 hours from start to finish creating 1 mould.


See below the recipes for the Cherry Vanilla Jam and the Cherry Elvesia Ganache.

Cherry Vanilla Jam

Yield: 64 pieces

Ingredients Amounts
Black Cherry puree 500g
Sugar #1 50g
Pectin 12g
Non sterilized apple juice 125g
Sugar #2 575g
Glucose 115g
Amarone Wine 20g
Dried cherries 200g


Recipe 1 – Method of Production:

  1. Boil puree and apple juice.
  2. Mix sugar #1 and pectin and add slowly.
  3. Stir to a boil.
  4. Add sugar #2, vanilla beans, dried chopped cherries and Glucose.
  5. Cook to 107c or 75 brix.
  6. Add Amarone off heat.
  7. Pour onto silpat to cool.
  8. Pipe into mold.


Cherry Elvesia Ganache

Ingredients Amounts
Cream 350g
Glucose 48
74% Hacienda Elvesia 420g
38% Hacienda Elvesia 148g
Butter 100g
Vanilla bean 4 each


Recipe 2 – Method of Production:

1.Boil Vanilla, cream, and glucose.

2. Pour through strainer over chocolates.

3. Stir until fully incorporated and allow to cool to 35 C.

4. Add room temperature butter and blend with emulsion blender.

5. Pipe into mold.


Method of Production for Whole Recipe:

1. Pipe 1/3 cavity cherry jam first.

2. Pipe Hacienda Ganache ½ of mold.

3. Close mold with 74% (same as cast).

Do you have any aspirations to be a Chocolatier?

Chef Chocolatier Maura Metheny’s Peanut and Caramel Crunch Recipe

Chef Maura Metheny's Peanut and Caramel Crunch - Top 10 Pastry Chef DessertDessert Professional hosts a grand celebration for their Top Ten Pastry Chefs in America to celebrate the honorees and their work. This year’s festivities was at the La Venue in New York City earlier on June 2nd where each of the 10 chefs created and served a dessert of his or her choice. Chef Chocolatier Maura Metheny chose to make her Peanut and Caramel Crunch dessert for her Top 10 Pastry Chef Dessert.

Check out Chef Metheny’s recipe below to recreate this delicious beauty!


Peanut and Caramel Crunch

Green Vanilla Ganache: yield 300g (one screen)
Cream – 60g
White chocolate – 188g
Glucose – 18g
Vanilla – 2g
Butter – 22g
Carnival Green cocoa butter – 15g

1. Boil cream and glucose.
2. Pour over chocolate and cocoa butter.
3. Add butter at the end.

Bitter Ganache: yield 400g (3 screens)
Cream – 144
Glucose – 30
Dark Chocolate 61% – 174
Butter – 60

1. Boil cream and glucose.
2. Pour over chocolate.
3. Add butter at the end.

Caramel Mousse: yield  1100g – one frame
Glucose 100g
Sugar 140g
Vanilla bean 1 scraped
Dry Caramel
– Butter 20g
– Cream 200g
– Salt 2g
– gelatin (bloomed cold) 14g
Yolks 90g
Sugar 80g

1. Whisk over heat and whip cool.
2. Fold into cooled caramel mixture.
3. Fold into whipped cream.
Whipped cream 450g

Poached Peanuts: 200g/frame
Raw blanched peanuts 600g
Honey 300g
Vanilla (paste or 1 bean) 2g
Sea salt 4g
Water 200g

1. Grind and sift raw blanched peanuts to desired size.
2. Lightly roast to thaw/dry.
3. Add to liquids and bring to a boil.
4. Simmer for 20 minutes.
5. Strain and bake at 190°f for 1 hour.
6. Bake at 220°f moving for even bake until desired color.
7. Allow to cool uncovered.

Peanut butter Mousse: yield 690g (1100g/frame)
Cream – 102g
Milk – 83g
Sugar – 83g
Yolks – 55g
Gelatin – 7g
Peanut butter – 120g
Whipped Cream 40% – 240g

1. Cook first 4 to 85°c/185°f and add bloomed gelatin and pour over PB to make Ganache.
2. Cool to 32°c.
3. Fold in cream and pour into frame as desired weight.

Peanut Butter Cream: yield 367g (1800g/frame)
Cream 205g
Yolks 38g
Sugar 54g
Peanut Butter 68g
Gelatin 2g
-Cook first 4 to 5°c/185°f and add bloomed gelatin and pour over PB to make Ganache.

Crispy Peanut Butter Ganache yield 250g (400/full frame )
Peanut Butter 100g
Melted Milk Chocolates 100g
Feuillitine 50g
-Mix together in a bowl and spread over biscuit before pressing into Peanut Butter Cream.

Chocolate Fondant Cake ½” slice thickness yield:1 frame
70% dark chocolate 450g
Butter melted 250g
Yolks 320g
Sugar#1 120g
Whites 480g
Sugar#2 110g

1. Melt chocolate and butter and cool.
2. Whip sugar #1 and yolks.
3. Whip sugar #2 and whites.
4. Fold ½ pate a bomb into melted chocolate and butter.
5. Fold ½ whites into same mixture.
6. Fold rest of yolks.
7. Fold rest of whites.
8. Bake at 155°c for 12 minutes.
9. Wrap while cooling.
10. Freeze to unmold.

PB Macaroon filling: yield 484g
Cream        175g
Trimoline    60g
64% Dark     184g
Butter        15g
Creamy PB    50g

1. Boil cream and glucose.
2. Pour over chocolate.
3 Add peanut butter and butter at the end.

Chef Chocolatier Maura Metheny’s Hazelnut and Lemon Cake Recipe

Chef Chocolatier Maura Metheny's Hazelnut and Lemon Cake Recipe

Meet Blonde. Exquisite. Delectable. Savory.

Chef Chocolatier Maura Metheny created her hazelnut and lemon cake masterpiece called “Blonde” at the 24th annual U.S. Pastry Competition for Pastry Chef of the Year in New York City in March 2013 and earned a bronze medal! Congrats Chef Metheny!

For all of our adventurous chocolatiers in the making, check out Chef Metheny’s recipe below to recreate this delectable dessert.

If you want to take it to the next level and learn from professional artisan chocolatiers and pastry chefs in Southwest Florida, Norman Love Confections has summer classes and you can check out their class schedule here. The new schedule will be published after Valentine’s Day 2016.


Hazelnut and Lemon Cake Recipe

Hazelnut and Lemon Biscuit:

75g Hazelnut Flour

75g Confectionary Sugar

62g Eggs

60g Yolks

1g Lemon Zest

137g Egg Whites

50g Sugar

60g Cake Flour



1. Whip toasted and cooled hazelnut flour, confectionary sugar, eggs, yolks and lemon zest to a light ribbon.

2. Whip Egg whites and sugar to soft peak.

3. Fold 1/3 of meringue into egg mixture.

4. Fold in sifter cake flour into egg/meringue mixture.

5. Fold in remaining 2/3 meringue and pour into desired cake pan to bake at 155 degrees celsius for 25-30 minutes until center is dry when tested.


Praline Glaze:

160g 99% Noel Liquor Chocolate

90g Heavy Cream

120g Cold Water

10g Gelatin

460g Mirror Glaze

230g Hazelnut Paste



1. Microwave Mirror glaze to 50 degrees celsius.

2. Bloom gelatin with cold water.

3. Boil cream and pour over chocolate to create a ganache.

4. Emulsify hot ganache into hot mirror glaze.

5. Add hazelnut paste and melted bloomed gelatin mixture while continuing to blend.

6. Store in refrigerator for 24 hours before reheating to use.


Milk and Dark Chocolate Mousse:

136g Yolks

69g Sugar

50g Heavy Cream

30g Whole Milk

100g 33% Noel Lactee Chocolate

145g 64% Noel Royale Chocolate

430g Heavy Cream



1. Cook Yolks, sugar, heavy cream and milk all together in a pot to 85 degrees celsius.

2. Strain into mixing bowl and whip cool.

3. Melt chocolates together.

4. Whip heavy cream to medium consistency.

5. Fold chocolates into whipped Anglaise.

6. Fold 1/3 whipped cream into chocolate mixture.

7. Fold chocolate mixture into remaining whipped cream.


Praline Cream:

42g Cold Water

6g Gelatin

250g Hazelnut Praline

275g Piedmont Hazelnuts

255g Heavy Cream



1. Bloom gelatin in cold water.

2. Roast Hazelnuts and puree into paste.

3. Boil Heavy cream and pour over praline and hazelnut paste, stir to create an emulsion.

4. Add bloomed melted gelatin and blend with emulsion blender.


Hazelnut Creameux:

450g Heavy Cream

90g Sugar

107g Yolks

75g Hazelnuts

4.5g Gelatin

27g Cold Water



1. Toast and grind hazelnuts to paste.

2. Cook, cream, sugar, and yolks to 85 degrees celsius.

3. Pour Anglaise over hazelnut paste and mix until emulsified.

4. Bloom gelatin and cold water for 5 minutes and add to ganache.

5. Stir until fully incorporated.


Lemon Cream:

100g Ravifruit Lemon Puree

45g Sugar

56g Butter

10g Potato Starch

45g Sugar

75g Eggs

30g Yolks

2g Gelatin

12g Cold Water



1. Boil Puree, 1st sugar and butter.

2. Whisk starch with 2nd sugar and whip with eggs and yolks until smooth.

3. Temper egg mixture into hot liquid cook to 85 degrees celsius.

4. Bloom gelatin with cold water for 5 minutes.

5. Add bloomed gelatin mixture to hot lemon cream and stir until smooth and fully incorporated.


Hazelnut Crunch:

75g Toasted Blanched Hazelnuts

45g Hazelnut Praline

135g 35% Cocoa Noel Lactee Chocolate

50g Feuilletine



1. Roast, cool, and coarsely chop hazelnuts.

2. Melt chocolate and cool to 35 degrees celsius.

3. Mix all ingredients and roll to desired thickness.

Chefuniforms.com October 2015 Chef of the Month - Chef Chocolatier Maura Metheny

October 2015 Chef of the Month – Maura Metheny, Chef Chocolatier

Chefuniforms.com October 2015 Chef of the Month - Chef Chocolatier Maura MethenyChef Chocolatier and Head of Design and Innovation at Norman Love Confections, Chef Maura Metheny, a Massachusetts native, was formally trained in ceramic arts and glass before turning to a career in pastry and chocolate. She earned her bachelor’s degree in fine arts in New York and then, intrigued by the artistry of baking and pastry, earned an associate degree in pastry arts at Johnson & Wales University in Providence, Rhode Island. At the end of her studies, Metheny moved to Lucerne, Switzerland, where she worked in pastry and chocolate. She returned to the United States to join The Ritz-Carlton, Naples, creating desserts and confections for the hotel’s acclaimed fine dining outlets.

In 2001, Metheny began assisting Chef Norman Love part time while continuing to work full time at The Ritz-Carlton. In 2003, she joined Norman Love Confections full time as the chocolate production manager for the Fort Myers-based confectioner. In this position, she designed and oversaw the daily production of more than 35,000 pieces of handmade, ultra-premium confections, as well as the production of G Chocolate for Godiva, FM Artisan by Norman Love for Fannie May Chocolates and numerous specialty lines for resorts, restaurants and shops nationwide.

Metheny was promoted to head of chocolate design and product innovation in 2011. She is responsible for the development of new products, packaging design and the continued development and execution of all chocolate lines produced by Norman Love Confections. Metheny, having traveled the world to numerous classes and competitions, takes her inspiration from both industry and art to design and create beautiful and indulgent lines of airbrushed confections.

Metheny was chosen as one of the 2015 Top 10 Pastry Chefs in the United States by Dessert Professional Magazine, and Johnson & Wales has invited Metheny to return to her alma mater as a Distinguished Visiting Chef in 2015. She was selected as a 2014 “40 under 40” honoree by Gulfshore Business magazine, she was the recipient of the 2014 National Product Design Award for the Love Origins product packaging; and she was selected as a judge for the 2014 Pastry Live competition in Atlanta.

She competed as a team captain in the Pastry Live 2013 National Showpiece Championship, heading one of only eight teams chosen to compete in Atlanta. Metheny, with co-worker Chef/Chocolatier Dan Forgey, was named National Showpiece Champion for the Best Overall/Most Excellent Showpiece and Best Chocolate Showpiece. She also placed second for Pastry Live 2013 Chocolatier of the Year.

In March 2013, she earned a bronze medal in the 24th annual U.S. Pastry Competition for Pastry Chef of the Year, sponsored by Paris Gourmet in New York City, and was featured on the cover of the April 2013 issue of Dessert Professional magazine for the competition. She had previously earned silver medals in the 2008 and 2009 Florida Showpiece Competitions.

A consummate professional, Metheny strives each day to be better than the day before, and to assist Norman Love Confections in continually raising the bar within the industry.

We met with Chef Metheny in Fort Myers and had such a good time getting to know her and seeing where she worked. She has a bubbly personality and is very talented! The process in making these chocolates is quite the undertaking but so worth it! Norman Love Confections sells their beautifully designed and delicious chocolates (which we gladly tasted and brought for our co-workers) retail in their Chocolate Salon and they also have a cafe selling their gelato icecream and savory meals for lunch and dinner.

Congratulations Maura Metheny on being our Chef of the Month for October! Enjoy getting to know this talented Chocolatier as we did!

Chefuniforms.com October 2015 Chef of the Month - Chef Chocolatier Maura Metheny at Norman Love Confections

Norman Love Confections Chocolate Salon

1. Where do you work and where are you based?

Norman Love Confections in Fort Myers, FL


2. What is your favorite kitchen tool in creating your masterpieces?

My hands. So many artistic techniques are done with your hands alone but if I had to pick something I would say a set of soft pastry brushes. Applying color or luster dust to transfers and molds, brushing away particles on a showpiece, melted butter or glaze on a pastry, they are very handy and versatile.


3. What is your Wisk Hand? Left or Right?

Mainly right but I use both interchanging.


4. What advice would you offer for aspiring Chef Chocolatiers?

Find a Passion and learn as much as you can about it, whatever aspect of the industry fascinates you most you can never go wrong in learning and it will lead you to working in what you love most.


5. What is one tip every Chef Chocolatiers should know and perfect?

It sounds silly but, Tempering. Knowing how to temper, maintain temper, and problem solve or correct a temper in various environments is the most crucial, even when working with machines. Most people rely on machines but if something goes wrong you won’t know how to properly adjust the settings if you don’t understand the principle.


6. What does a great dessert look like to you?

One that is stunning enough to make me pause and admire it but still appetizing enough to make me want to eat it the second I recover from admiring.


7. Favorite ingredient to work with?

Vanilla, I love simple flavors, and vanilla custard or cream is always my favorite.


8. Favorite Dessert City?

That’s very tough, I think from my core I say Paris. Only because the desserts I have eaten in other cities that I have loved have been because they have aspects of French pastry in them.


9. Best Dish you have ever made?

One of my favorites to this day is one that I learned the techniques from a Chef of mine from the Ritz and I’ve used in Fine Dining. It is a whole tangerine skin hollowed out and confit with an orange, chocolate and tangerine dessert built inside. Layers of orange cake, chocolate cream, fresh tangerine curd, and citrus granite. It is still one of my favorite desserts and techniques. It looked like a fresh tangerine dipped in clear syrup placed on a clean white plate with the stem still attached and the whole thing was edible.


10. What trends do you see emerging in the near future for Chef Chocolatiers?

I’ve seen some very fun influences from Art into chocolate décor and bon-bons. Things from faux finishing to wax sculpting and silk screening, great color combinations in plated dessert and entremets from the chocolate decors. It’s very exciting.


11. What features are important to you when selecting a Chef Coat? (particular fabric, style, sleeve length, pockets)

Short sleeved, curved fit with vents on sides or back and breathable material that will resist wrinkling, sleeve pockets, no breast pockets and flattering lines.


12. What is your go-to chef outfit?  Do you prefer coats, tees, pants, shorts, aprons, hats, etc?

Thin suit pants with front square pockets for cell phones (yes multiple).

A very thin colored t-shirt under my coat for living in FL and having to run errands without a coat and still be presentable and comfortable in the heat.

And a company cotton ball cap, it’s helpful for very long hair and does not fall off when leaning over or when walking between buildings in the hurricane season. =)

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