We have had a bit of a rearrange on our food counters so let’s get to it.
First up is the financier. These perfectly sized, almond-flour cakes are French in origin and made for us by the Sally Clarke bakery. They are moreish little cakey bars flavoured with pistachio bits. A perfect little something to go with a coffee when a pastry is looking a bit intimidating.
New biscuits have also arrived from Sally Clarke – a chocolate chip cookie, and an oat and raisin alternative. They are delivered to us throughout the week so one or another will be on the counter on any given day. The chocolate chip cookie is more biscuit than cookie with a pleasing thinness belying its actual size, and the chocolate bits are definitely big enough.
The oat and raisin have a good chewy-oaty-thing going on and if you enjoy a flapjack style cookie, this is a good option.
Truffles, yes, we have new truffles made for us by our friends at Chocolarder. We are delighted with how these have turned out. Now, we know they are not exactly the same as the Sally Clarke ones, it would be a bit weird if they were, but they taste great, and we are super pleased to have them on the counter. We have gone with a darker chocolate that really highlights the quality of the cocoa.
Chocolarder are an interesting company to work with, they focus on quality ingredients, with traceability, sustainability and ethical trade at the heart of their decision making. Coffee and chocolate share so many commonalities, but the cocoa and chocolate industries are still run by the big players, and making true bean-to-bar, traceable chocolate is still a radical proposition. Becca and Will from Chocolarder recently visited our roastery and we had good chat about the similarities and differences in our two industries. We came away from that conversation inspired by their commitment to change in chocolate – these people are seriously walking the talk.
There are three main ingredients to the truffles: cocoa, sugar and cream. The cocoa comes from the Femme Virunga Cooperative in DR Congo. This cooperative has 1500 members who grow and harvest cacao within the Virunga National Park. The cacao is grown sustainably within the rainforest which helps maintain the eco-system. The raw cane sugar is from the Green Harvest Project in Brazil where the crop is harvested using the cut and carry method. And finally, the cream is from local dairies in Cornwall. Please visit chocolarder.com for more information about the methods they use with innovative repurposing of antique machinery.
That’s all the changes on the sweet treats counter! There are plenty of changes happening on the coffee counter over the next few months as well. We are coming to the end of our Colombian coffees from Nariño and will have old favourites Finca Altamira and Finca La Piragua from Huila soon. If you are a natural process fan keep an eye out for the Finca Las Alasitas. We have two varietals from this farm this year, a caturra and java. If you get your timing right it’s a super opportunity to taste the difference that varietal can make to the cup where growing conditions and processing are the same.