My life in food: Thierry Muret, chocolatier

 

Godiva Chocolates, founded in Brussels in 1926, is known for its upmarket milk chocolate. Since 1988, Thierry Muret, a trained chemist as well as chocolatier, has been its development chef. The latest Godiva boutique opens today in Harrods in London.

What are your most and least used pieces of kitchen kit?

That's easy. We have a few blue stone marble tables we use to temper the chocolate on. They are large things, 6ft long and 4ft wide. You heat chocolate to 50 degrees then cool it by putting it on the marble and spreading it. You then reheat it to about 28 degrees. This gives the chocolate a sheen. It's like tempering glass, it creates little crystals and gives the snappable texture. If you don't do it, you get something grey and soft. You know, I don't have a least used bit of kit, I'm quite frugal.

If you had only £10 to spend on food, where would you spend it and on what?

I would go to the farmers' market in Brussels. I probably wouldn't pick up any meat, just vegetables and fruit, the more exotic the better. Prickly pears, maybe, they have a wonderful taste profile. Guavas, too, or acai – I like to try them and think about what flavours I could marry them with.

What do you eat for comfort?

This may sound strange as I work with it every day but chocolate remains my comfort food. Sometimes at the weekend, when the day is over, I like to sit down in the garden and have a glass of port or red wine with 67 or 72 percent cocoa chocolate. That to me is comfort. You drift into the complexity of the food, the flavours. It is nice to view the product you work with every day in another light.

If you could eat only bread or potatoes for the rest of your life, which would you choose?

Definitely bread. There is more complexity in bread, more variety. Potato is just starch. You can process potatoes and make different textures that way, but bread gives so much more intrinsically: softness to the crunchiness. And the making of it is a pleasure, as well. My family always know I'm stressed when I bake bread, It is a great calmer. You get a sense of peace when you bake.

What's your desert island recipe?

Chocolate ganache is my desert island recipe. It's a combination of heavy cream and chocolate. First you bring the heavy cream nearly to the boil, taking it from the heat just before it bubbles too much. And then you pour it onto the small blocks of chocolate solid and mix. Depending on the ratio of cocoa solid to cream, you can have a white, dark or milk ganache. Without chocolate ganache I couldn't work or indeed relax.

What's your favourite restaurant?

I have just found a place in Brussels called the Rouge Tomate. It is very modern, fresh and perfectly prepared food. They are very big on local ingredients, too, and have the odd bit of molecular gastronomy insight – but not too much. The ambience is also very pleasant, its almost cafe-like with big wooden tables.

What's your favourite cookbook?

It is called Livre du Chocolat. It is concerned with chocolate, from its very beginnings in the fields to the processing and the finished product. It is not the most technical of books but somehow it gets to the heart of chocolate.

Who taught you about food?

My chocolate master, who taught me for three years in Antwerp, Rene Goossens. He brought me into food, he opened up the full scope of taste and flavour to me. He used to say, "taste this strawberry – now explain what those flavours are." I learnt a lot.

Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebooks
ebookA delicious collection of 50 meaty main courses
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Food & Drink

    Recruitment Genius: Senior Bid Writer

    £25000 - £34000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: With offices in Manchester, Lon...

    Recruitment Genius: Membership Sales Advisor - OTE £20,000 Uncapped

    £15000 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The fastest growing fitness cha...

    Guru Careers: Marketing Manager / Marketing Communications Manager

    £35-40k (DOE) + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Marketing Communicati...

    Guru Careers: Membership Administrator

    £23K: Guru Careers: We're seeking an experienced Membership Administrator, to ...

    Day In a Page

    Syria civil war: Meet the military commander who says his soldiers will not rest until every inch of their war torn country is free of Islamist 'terrorists'

    ‘We won’t stop until Syria is back to normal’

    Near the front lines with Islamist-controlled towns where Assad’s troops were besieged just last month, Robert Fisk meets a commander confidently preparing his soldiers for battle
    The inside story of how Bill Clinton built a $2bn global foundation may undermine Hillary's chances

    The inside story of how Bill Clinton built a $2bn global foundation...

    ... and how it may undermine Hillary's chances in 2016
    12 best olive oils

    Extra-virgin, cold-press, early-harvest, ultra-premium: 12 best olive oils

    Choosing an olive oil is a surprising minefield. Save yourself the hassle with our handy guide
    Sepp Blatter resignation: The beginning of Fifa's long road to reform?

    Does Blatter's departure mean Fifa will automatically clean up its act?

    Don't bet on it, says Tom Peck
    Charles Kennedy: The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

    The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

    Charles Kennedy was consistently a man of the centre-left, dedicated to social justice, but was also a champion of liberty and an opponent of the nanny-state, says Baroness Williams
    Syria civil war: The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of this endless conflict

    The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of Syria's endless civil war

    Sahar Qanbar lost her mother and brother as civilians and government soldiers fought side by side after being surrounded by brutal Islamist fighters. Robert Fisk visited her
    The future of songwriting: How streaming is changing everything we know about making music

    The future of songwriting

    How streaming is changing everything we know about making music
    William Shemin and Henry Johnson: Jewish and black soldiers receive World War I Medal of Honor amid claims of discrimination

    Recognition at long last

    Jewish and black soldiers who fought in WWI finally receive medals after claims of discrimination
    Beating obesity: The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters

    Beating obesity

    The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters
    9 best women's festival waterproofs

    Ready for rain: 9 best women's festival waterproofs

    These are the macs to keep your denim dry and your hair frizz-free(ish)
    Cycling World Hour Record: Nervous Sir Bradley Wiggins ready for pain as he prepares to go distance

    Wiggins worried

    Nervous Sir Bradley ready for pain as he prepares to attempt cycling's World Hour Record
    Liverpool close in on Milner signing

    Liverpool close in on Milner signing

    Reds baulk at Christian Benteke £32.5m release clause
    On your feet! Spending at least two hours a day standing reduces the risk of heart attacks, cancer and diabetes, according to new research

    On your feet!

    Spending half the day standing 'reduces risk of heart attacks and cancer'
    With scores of surgeries closing, what hope is there for the David Cameron's promise of 5,000 more GPs and a 24/7 NHS?

    The big NHS question

    Why are there so few new GPs when so many want to study medicine?
    Big knickers are back: Thongs ain't what they used to be

    Thongs ain't what they used to be

    Big knickers are back