Paris’ Salon Du Chocolat comes to Cairo

Egypt has bid farewell to the Salon Du Chocolat international chocolate exhibition, held for the first time in the Middle East at the Intercontinental City Stars Hotel last Sunday. A Parisian chocolate extravaganza, the event is the world’s premiere festival for chocolate lovers and manufacturers.

The exhibition highlighted the latest technologies in the chocolate industry from all over the world. It was attended by more than 200 representatives from countries including Egypt, France, the US, China, Russia, Taiwan, Japan, Spain, Switzerland, the Netherlands, Italy, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, South Korea and India.

The Salon Du Chocolat wrapped up on Sunday night with a fashion show featuring dresses made entirely of chocolate by internationally-acclaimed designer Hany el-Behairy.

The event also included an artistic chocolate showpiece competition held between the chefs of four of Egypt’s best-known hotels, namely, the Ramses Hilton, Le Meridien, Conrad and Movenpick. Each hotel entered the competition with its own chocolate statue: a chocolate Eiffel Tower by Le Meridien, chocolate Pyramids by Movenpick and a chocolate orchestra by the Ramses Hilton. The Conrad, for its part, entered two statues: a dark chocolate bust of Nefertiti and a mermaid made of white chocolate.

The Movenpick won the Salon du Chocolat prize–consisting of a medal and a trophy–for best showpiece. Conrad and the Ramsis Hilton, meanwhile, won the best pastries prizes.

Chocolate producer Galaxy hosted a number of international chocolate connoisseurs, all of whom presented viewers with a variety of chocolate-themed programs and competitions. “This fair is the first of its kind in the region," said Galaxy Marketing Manager Fadi Abi-Nader. "So we wanted to make the Galaxy area look enticing to the audience in order to lure them to the mystique of chocolate-making.”

Jin Caldwell, a world-class chef–ranked in the top 10 chefs worldwide, according to Salon du Chocolat–demonstrated a number of creative recipes using Galaxy chocolate. Galaxy also hosted renowned Indian chocolate sculptor Karthi, who sculpted chocolate live for the audience. Chef Hassan, a local celebrity chef who has participated in a number of international competitions, also created chocolate dishes for the audience.

As for the "chocolate sushi" mentioned in Salon Du Chocolat radio advertisements, Galaxy, in cooperation with Mori Sushi restaurant, offered free samples of maki rolls with chocolate. While the notion of raw fish mixed with chocolate may sound dubious, Mori Sushi Area Manager Moustafa Saber raved, “We wanted to attract people to try something new–and it really succeeded.”

For those who missed the event, the following are two chocolate recipes courtesy of Mori Sushi:

Spring roll salmon with chocolate sauce

300 grams spring rolls sheets
Half teaspoon Philadelphia cheese
Thinly-sliced smoked salmon
2 Chocolate bars
Chocolate sauce
Vegetable oil for frying spring rolls

1) Spread out spring roll sheet on a large plate
2) Place half teaspoon Philadelphia cheese
3) Flake salmon at natural breaks
4) Place 2 chocolate bars, then mix all on right side of spring roll sheet
5) Roll up ingredients tightly by hand
6) Use bamboo mat (if you have one) to tighten roll
7) Fold ends over filling to form cylinder
8) Fry spring rolls in hot oil on low heat until crisp and golden brown, then drain it
9) Place chocolate sauce on top of spring roll

California chocolate roll

Nori sheet (seaweed wrap)
1 cup sushi rice with rice vinegar
Plain chocolate bars cut lengthwise
Half cup ground salmon
Half cup grated Philadelphia cheese
Chocolate sauce
1) Spread out halved nori sheet, shiny side down, on large plate
2) Spread a handful of sushi rice on right side of nori sheet, then flatten down slightly
3) Place chocolate bars on rice
4) Roll up ingredients tightly by hand
5) Use a bamboo mat (if you have one) to tighten roll
6) Use sharp, wet knife to slice off pieces from roll (8 pieces per roll is perfect thickness)
7) Place on top of each one piece ground salmon, grated Philadelphia cheese and chocolate sauce

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