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Chocolat by Joanne Harris (Food Reference List)


If your teeth start to ache from all the sweetness that follows, my apologies. The list from Chocolat is incredibly delectable, although heavens knows, there were so many mentions of food in the book, I’ve probably missed many. I’ve added descriptions where possible and the occasional link to recipes on other blogs. It will also help as a starting point for a French chocolatier themed party.

Frying pancakes


Powdery sweet waffles

Apples, kiwis, melons, endives

Galette: “The paper is hot and greasy, the dark wheat pancake crispy at the edges but thick and good in the center”


Pralines: Pralines from France are typically confections made of almonds and caramelized sugar.

Venus’s nipples: also known as Italian Capezzoli di Venere. A dark chocolate chestnut ganache, dipped in white chocolate and tipped with a ‘nipple’. In some cases it’s pale pink white chocolate, however in Chocolat, it’s dark chocolate. {try this Nipples of Venus recipe from Silk Routes}


Mendiants: A chocolate disc, the size of a biscuit or cookie, traditionally with lemon rind, almonds and raisins on top. {a nice step by step on how to make mendiants plus how to temper chocolate from Jo the Tart Queen}

Hazelnut clusters.

Chocolate seashells: think Guylain.

Candied rose petals.

Sugared violets.

And in the middle she has built a magnificent centrepiece. A gingerbread house, walls of chocolate-coated pain d’epices with the detail piped on in silver and gold icing, roof tiles of florentines studded with crystallized fruits, strange vines of icing and chocolate growing up the walls, marzipan birds singing in chocolate trees… And the witch herself, dark chocolate from the top of her pointed hat to the hem of her long cloak, half astride a broomstick which is in reality a giant guimauve, the long twisted marshmallows that dangle from the stalls of sweet-vendors on carnival days.


Sugar mouse:  Made of a form of meringue.

Florentines: A pastry biscuit made with nuts, candied cherries and caramel, with a chocolate bottom.

Chocolat chaud: hot chocolate.

Gateau au chocolat: A chocolate cake.

Cup of chocolate with crème Chantilly (whipped cream) and chocolate curls

huîtres de Saint-Malo: “small flat pralines shaped to look like tightly closed oysters”

zesty orange twists

soft centred apricot hearts

chocolate brazils

double chocolate truffles

cinder toffee (honeycomb)

chocolate curls

white buttons with colored vermicelli

Pain d’epices with gilded edging: gingerbread cake

marzipan fruits: marzipan shaped and coloured to look like realistic fruit decorations

Peanut brittle: broken pieces of a hard flat sugar candy made with peanuts

Clusters: cluster of usually nuts and chocolate



Nougatines: a firm crunchy brown nougat, made without egg whites

baked bread


Bouillabaisse and grilled garlic: Fish stew

Eisbrei (an ice slushie) with sauerkraut and kartoffelsalat (german potato salad)

Chocolate almonds

Pieces montees: A decorative centrepiece typically made of nougat, marzipan, spun sugar and modelling paste. It can also refer to croquembouche.

small and black chocolate, like espresso

Then, on impulse, I brought out a small packet of chocolate almonds from beneath the counter and handed them to him.

Boudin: sausage

chocolat espresso


mocha (with kahlua)

pain au chocolat: chocolate bread

cafes crème

café cognac: cognac, a type of  brandy, in coffee

crème de cacao (chocolate liquor)  into melted couverture (chocolate rich in cocoa butter and high in cocoa solids)

marrons glaces: Candied chestnuts

Amourettes: French term for marrow from the spine of an animal, usually a cow.

filigree nests with petit fours


chocolate figures; cats, dogs, rabbits, raisin eyes, pink marzipan ears, tails made of licorice whips, sugar flowers. Pink and white sugar coconut mice, mice marbled through truffle and maraschino cream, tinted mice, sugar dappled frosted mice

grilled sardines

flambéed pancakes: pancakes cooked in a pan where alcohol is added to create a burst of flames

grilled fish

roasted goats cheese

dark pancakes

hot chocolate cake

confit de canard: a dish made with the leg of the duck, where the meat is poached for up to 10 hours.

Spiced merguez: A spicy sausage

Religieuses: a bitter cocoa with choux pastry dessert

Noisette liqueur: hazelnut liquor

Hazelnut chips

salad of green beans and tomatoes in spiced oil

red and black olives

walnut bread


goat’s cheese

red wine

Chocolat viennois: vienna chocolate

black and white layer cake

Eclairs: An oblong pastry filled with cream and topped with icing.

Brioche with raspberry jam: Brioche is a pastry like bread  made with plenty of eggs and butter.

plump sweet apricots

cotton candy

cherry bombs

hot dogs, fried onions

Bavaroise (A fluffy pudding, served cold without sauce) with caramel icing

Meringues in chocolate, with crème Chantilly (whipped cream) and chopped hazelnuts


liqueur chocolates

rose petal clusters

gold wrapped coins

violet creams

chocolate cherries

almond rolls

spun caramel nests

caramelized apple

Foie gras: made of the liver of a duck or goose that has been fattened


fresh chanterelles (type of mushroom): An yellow-orange funnel shaped mushroom, that has a fruity apricot-like smell and mild pepper taste {for more information http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chanterelle }

Plateaux de fruits de mer: A seafood platter

liqueur cherries

Rocher noir: Translates to black rock. It’s a hazelnut praline coated in dark chocolate and topped with crushed hazelnuts. A popular brand is ferrero rocher.

Brandade truffee. Cod poached in a herb infused milk, with a side of black truffle mashed potatoes.

Vol au vents aux trois champignons : Puff pastry with mushrooms. A vol-au-vent is a small hollow case of puff pastry, usually made by cutting two circles. One has a hole cut out in the middle, and is then stacked on top of the other and baked.

cooked in wine and cream with wild chanterelles

grilled langoustines (prawns) with arugula salad

strawberry sorbet

sponge cake


salted pine nuts

tiny biscuits

boeuf en daube: a beef stew

champignons farcis a la greque: mushrooms stuffed in a dressing of tomatoes, fresh herbs, lemon juice and olive oil.

Escalopes a la reine: A dish called “The Queen Scallops” {A link to the translated version of the recipe on cuisineregionale.fr}

Crème caramel: a custard dish with a layer of soft caramel on top

Schokoladentorte- A German multilayered chocolate cake

Tiramisu: ladyfingers dipped in coffee, and layered with a egg, sugar and mascarpone cheese mixture, and dusted with cocoa.

Soupe de tomates a la gasconne, served with fresh basil and a slice of tartelette meridonale, made on biscuit-thin pate brisee and lush with the flavours of olive oil and anchovy and the rich local tomatoes, garnished with olives and roasted slowly to produce a concentration of flavours which seems almost impossible.

elderflower sorbet

Plateau de fruits de mer ( a seafood platter) with grilled langoustines, gray shrimps, prawns, oysters, berniques (a type of sea snail), spider crabs, tourteaux (crab), winkles, palourdes (clams), black lobster

gateau de savoie: sponge cake

dark and white chocolate roulade bicolore: sponge roll

I find that I am trembling. I eat dry bread to give myself courage. The coffee is hot and bitter. When I have accomplished my task I promise myself a good meal; eggs, ham, sugar rolls from Poitou ‘s.

apricot marzipan roll

cerisette russe : a dried cherry

white rum truffle

Manon blanc: Then a manon blanc, fluffy with fresh cream and almond.

Chocolat a croquer: plain chocolate

crème de cassis: sweet, dark red liqueur made from blackcurrants

three nut cluster

“I select a dark nugget from a tray marked Eastern journey. Crystallized ginger in a hard sugar shell, releasing a mouthful of liqueur like a concentration of spices, a breath of aromatic air where sandalwood and cinnamon and lime vie for attention with cedar and allspice.”


I take another, from a tray marked Peche au miel millefleurs. A slice of peach steeped in honey and eau-de-vie, a crystallized peach sliver on the chocolate lid.

Amandine: a Romanian chocolate sponge cake filled with chocolate or almond cream

caramel fondant

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One Comment

  1. This is a wonderful list, yum! I always loved the food descriptions in the book. 🙂 One correction on a German dish: it’s not ‘Eisbrei’ but ‘Eisbein’ as a pickled and cooked ham hock. It is a main course traditionally eaten with potato salad/mash and Sauerkraut.

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