Taza Chocolate Crémeux, Hand-harvested Sea Salt, Vanilla Mascarpone, Brown Sugar Granola, Salted Caramel, and Malted Milk Chocolate Sauce

Adapted by StarChefs.com
January 2015
Yield: 6 crémeux


Hand-harvested Sea Salt
(Yield: 2 quarts)
10 gallons sea water
(Yield: 1 gallon)
14 ounces rolled oats, uncooked
½ teaspoon kosher salt
1 ounce ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon vanilla
4 ounces sugar
1 pound brown sugar
1½ cups molasses
8 ounces wheat germ
8 ounces butter, melted
Malted Milk Chocolate Sauce
(Yield: 6 cups)
1 quart water
2 cups sugar
1 cup malt powder
½ cup cornstarch
8 ounces milk chocolate, coarsely chopped
Salted Butter Caramels
(Yield: 1 half-sheet tray)
12 ounces butter, plus more for greasing
4½ cups heavy cream
6 vanilla beans, split and scraped
2 tablespoons Hand-harvested Sea Salt
3 cups corn syrup
6 cups sugar
Vanilla Mascarpone
(Yield: 2 pounds)
1 pound mascarpone
½ cup powdered sugar
2 vanilla beans, split and scraped
Taza Chocolate Crémeux
½ cup Oreo cookie crumbs
1 ounce butter, melted
8 ounces Taza chocolate
1 cup heavy cream
½ cup milk
2½ ounces sugar
1 pinch Hand-harvested Sea Salt
3 large egg yolks


Hand-harvested Sea Salt

Collect sea water from a point away from public beaches. Filter water through cheesecloth-lined chinois. In 2 large pots over high heat, divide water and bring to boil. Boil 4 to 6 hours, until salt crystals begin to form. Stir constantly, cooking out as much water as possible. Do not let salt get scorched. Let cool.


Heat oven to 325˚F. In a large bowl, mix all ingredients. Divide mixture between two sheet trays and bake 15 to 20 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes, until evenly toasted. Let cool.

Malted Milk Chocolate Sauce

In a saucepot, combine water, sugar, malt, and cornstarch. Over medium-high heat, stir constantly while bringing to a boil. Boil 2 minutes. Remove from heat, add milk chocolate, and stir until combined. Strain through chinois and cool.

Salted Butter Caramels

Prepare half-sheet tray with a silicone mat and grease with butter. In a pot over medium-low heat, combine cream, vanilla, salt, and 6 ounces butter, and gently warm. In a separate pot, combine corn syrup and sugar and cook to a medium caramel. Carefully stir in warm cream mixture and continue to cook until mixture reaches 240˚F. Remove from heat, add remaining butter and stir to combine. Pour onto prepared half-sheet tray and cool completely.

Vanilla Mascarpone

In a mixer fitted with paddle, combine all ingredients until just combined. Do not over-mix, as the mascarpone will become grainy.

Taza Chocolate Crémeux

Heat oven to 350°F. Prepare molds with Food Release. In a bowl, mix cookie crumbs and butter. Add 1 tablespoon of crumb mixture to each mold, pack down, and bake for 5 minutes; let cool. Finely chop chocolate and place in a heatproof bowl. In a saucepot set over medium-high heat, combine cream, milk, sugar, and salt and bring to boil. Temper in egg yolks and cook until thickened. Using a chinois, strain mixture directly over chocolate and stir until smooth. Fill molds halfway with crémeux. Place a small portion of Salted Butter Caramel in center and top with more creméux. Cool until set. 

To Assemble and Serve

Unmold Taza Chocolate Crémeux and place off-center on a round plate. Sprinkle Granola on top of creméux and continue sprinkling in a line jutting from the base of the crémeux. Place a quenelle of Vanilla Mascarpone beside crémeux. Dot plate with Malted Milk Chocolate Sauce. Sprinkle Hand-harvested Sea Salt on top of crémeux.