Chocolate Astrology

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Overview

Are you a white chocolate aficionado or a bittersweet chocolate devotee? Do you crave the rich, deep taste of dark chocolate or prefer the silky smoothness of milk chocolate?

For Joy Nagy, these questions reveal as much about a person as the familiar query, "What's your sign?" In Chocolate Astrology, Nagy joins the power of the planets and the allure of chocolate to show that the heavens not only influence our personalities, but also our ...
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Overview

Are you a white chocolate aficionado or a bittersweet chocolate devotee? Do you crave the rich, deep taste of dark chocolate or prefer the silky smoothness of milk chocolate?

For Joy Nagy, these questions reveal as much about a person as the familiar query, "What's your sign?" In Chocolate Astrology, Nagy joins the power of the planets and the allure of chocolate to show that the heavens not only influence our personalities, but also our palates. The book features delightful profiles of each sign's "chocolate personality" along with recipes made-to-order for each—from black-and-white cookies for the Gemini who has trouble making choices to exotic Bittersweet Chocolate with Ginger Cream Filling for the adventurous Sagittarius.

Illustrated with the author's whimsical watercolors, Chocolate Astrology combines America's two favorite guilty pleasures in a gift package that's perfect for Valentine's Day and other special occasions.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Nagy aligns the stars with chocolate bars in a cute little giftbook for the uncynical chocolate lover. Just as the star signs are purported to have different personality traits, so should they be associated with different types of chocolates, Nagy says. The Fire Signs (Aries, Leo and Sagittarius) prefer bittersweet chocolate, she insists: the taste "often sparks passionate feelings in them." The Air Signs, on the other hand, are "intrigue[d]" by the light, sweet taste of white chocolate, which contains cocoa butter but no cocoa. Nagy offers recipes two recipes for each individual sign: for the Taurus, an Earth Sign and an "inveterate hedonist" who likes dark chocolate and nature, she offers the somewhat complicated but delicious Chocolate Iclair; for the harmony-loving Air Sign Libra, she suggests White and Dark Chocolate Layer Candies, which "satisf[y] Libra's desire for harmony in all things." Nagy's drawings are appropriately sweet, and if the concept sometimes seems a bit precious or even plain silly-well, her audience, who can learn how to temper chocolate and also make a Basic Fondant, probably won't mind. (Jan.) Copyright 2003 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780609609415
  • Publisher: Crown Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 1/7/2003
  • Edition description: 1ST
  • Pages: 96
  • Product dimensions: 6.74 (w) x 6.94 (h) x 0.47 (d)

Meet the Author

JOY NAGY is an artist and writer, and is a faculty member at the School of Visual Arts/Liberty Partnership Program. Her previous book, Build Your Own Sculptures, was featured in window displays at F.A.O. Schwarz and other prominent stores. She lives in New York City.
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Read an Excerpt

the fire signs:

Aries, Leo, and Sagittarius

their birth chocolate: bittersweet chocolate

Bittersweet chocolate is the richest and darkest of chocolates because it has the highest ratio of pure cocoa extract to sugar and cocoa butter. People born under the fire signs delight in the strong flavor of bittersweet chocolate, and the taste often sparks passionate feelings in them.

Aries, Leo, and Sagittarius are known for their strength, leadership, and assertiveness. The tangy intensity of bittersweet chocolate is the perfect complement to these fiery personalities.

Fire Sign

Aries

The Ram

March 21-April 19

the perfect chocolate for an aries:

Bittersweet Chocolate-Covered Cherries

The bittersweet chocolate coating honors Mars, Aries's fiery planetary ruler. Inside, a sweet cherry symbolizes the fresh beginnings of spring, the sign's birth season.

The Ram is an impulsive leader, full of energy and self-confidence. The spontaneous, romantic people born under this sign enjoy picnicking or sipping champagne beneath a starry sky-always with a box of chocolates close at hand.

Aries Bittersweet Chocolate-Covered Cherries
(makes 24)

2 cups red wine
1 cup sugar
2 strips (1 x 2 inches each) lemon zest
2 dozen ripe cherries with stems, pitted
6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, melted
1 ounce white chocolate, chopped, optional

1. Combine the wine, sugar, and zest in a small heavy saucepan. Bring to a boil. Add the cherries and simmer for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and let the cherries cool in the pan. Remove the cherries from the saucepan and drain thoroughly.

2. Holding each cherry by its stem, dip into the melted bittersweet chocolate. Place on a baking sheet lined parchment or with wax paper. Refrigerate until set, about 20 minutes.

3. Place the white chocolate in a glass measuring cup or bowl and microwave on medium for 30 seconds. Stir and microwave for 10 to 30 seconds longer, or until melted. Scrape the chocolate into a small plastic sandwich bag. Snip off a small piece of a bottom corner and pipe the Aries sign onto each cherry. Refrigerate until set. Keep the cherries refrigerated until time to serve (they will keep for 2 days).

Aries Chocolate Cake with Bittersweet Chocolate Glaze
(serves 8)

cake

2 cups sifted cake flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups sugar
3 large eggs, separated
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3 ounces (3 squares) unsweetened chocolate, melted and cooled
1 cup sour cream

glaze

1/2 cup heavy cream
3 ounces bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 tablespoon dark rum

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease two 9-inch round cake pans. Line the bottoms with parchment or wax paper. Grease the parchment and dust the pans with flour; tap out the excess.

2. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, soda, and salt. Mix well and set aside.

3. In a large bowl, beat the butter with an electric mixer on medium-high speed until smooth and creamy. Gradually add the sugar, then continue beating until the butter mixture has increased in volume and is very light and fluffy, about 8 minutes. Add the egg yolks, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in the vanilla and the chocolate.

4. With the mixer on low, alternately add the flour mixture and the sour cream to the batter, beginning and ending with the flour and beating just until blended.

5. In another clean bowl, beat the egg whites with an electric mixer (with clean beaters) at medium speed until the peaks are stiff but not dry. With a rubber spatula, fold a third of the whites into the batter until well mixed. Gently fold in the remaining whites just until blended. Divide the batter between the prepared pans and bake about 25 minutes, or just until a cake tester inserted comes out clean. Let cool for 15 minutes in the pans, then invert onto racks to cool completely.

6. To make the glaze, bring the cream to a boil in a small saucepan. Remove from the heat, add the chocolate, and whisk until smooth. Stir in the rum. With a spatula, spread two-thirds of the glaze over the tops of both cake layers. Arrange one layer on top of the other and drizzle the remaining glaze over the sides.

Fire Sign

Leo

The Lion

July 23-August 22

the perfect chocolate for a leo:

Bittersweet Chocolate Lemon Cups

The regal soul of the Leo appreciates the rich luxury of bittersweet chocolate, and the tangy lemon filling pleases this sign's sunny heart and outgoing spirit. A true Leo, warmhearted and magnanimous, seeks a partner to share this delectable experience.

Leo Bittersweet Chocolate

Lemon Cups
(makes 50)

1 1/4 pounds tempered bittersweet chocolate (see How to Temper Chocolate, page 00)
Confectioners' sugar
2 teaspoons finely grated lemon zest
1/4 teaspoon pure lemon oil

Basic Fondant Filling (see page 00)

2 ounces white chocolate, chopped, optional

1. With a small paintbrush, coat the insides of 50 small (confection-size) paper candy cups with the tempered chocolate. Refrigerate until firm. Coat once more with the chocolate and refrigerate until firm.

2. On a work surface dusted with confectioners' sugar, knead the lemon zest and oil into the fondant until thoroughly incorporated. Roll into a 1/2-inch-wide cylinder and cut into 1/2-inch pieces.

3. Place a piece of fondant in each cup and spoon melted chocolate over the fondant, sealing it thoroughly. Fill each cup with the chocolate until level and full. Refrigerate until set.

4. Place the white chocolate in a glass measuring cup or bowl and microwave on medium for 30 to 40 seconds. Stir and microwave for 10 to 40 seconds longer, or until melted. Scrape the chocolate into a small plastic sandwich bag. Snip off a small piece of a bottom corner and pipe the Leo sign onto each cup. Refrigerate until set, peel off the wrappers, and place the cups in clean foil candy cups.

Copyright© 2003 by Joy Nagy
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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 8, 2003

    A fun book with great recipes

    I was browsing through my local book store and happenned to pick up this book. Since I love recipe books, I couldn't help but buy the book. The recipes are fabulous; and it's a fun book to read. I heartily recommend the book for any chocoholic.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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