Instead of roaming drug store shelves for discounted Valentine’s candy (I’m not the only one, right?), I asked our resident dessert goddess, Deb Wise, for some tips on making simple, beautiful chocolate treats at home.

First off, why do you love chocolate?

What I love most about working with chocolate is a successful outcome. Chocolate can be rewarding and humbling, depending on so many factors. Time (meaning patience), temperature, agitation, weather conditions, all of these contribute to success with chocolate.

What’s your go-to chocolate for making confections?

I think that if you are going to indulge yourself with chocolate, you should always use the best available.  Most grocery stores carry upscale brands, such as Scharffenberger and Ghirardelli. My personal favorite is Valhrona, but it’s not easy to find in mainstream stores.  My favorite website to order chocolate from is  

How can a first-time chocolate maker get started with chocolate?

The easiest way to enjoy a chocolate treat is a very simple ganache. Mixing cream, a tiny bit of light corn syrup and your favorite liquor to melted chocolate makes for one decadent treat (like our Chocolate Triple Hazelnut Truffles). Serve the ganache warm as an ice cream topping, or chill and shape it into truffles as you desire. Coat the truffles with toasted chopped nuts or a light dusting of cocoa powder to enhance the experience.

How do you get your chocolate fix? Check out our favorite 100-calorie chocolate treats to satisfy your sweet tooth.