The Essence of Chocolate, written by America's premiere chocolate makers Robert Steinberg and John Scharffenberger, features more than 100 spectacular--and often simple--recipes drawn from the Scharffen Berger files and two dozen top pastry chefs. It is divided into three sections: "Intensely Chocolate," which includes such decadent treats as That Chocolate Cake, in which the sumptuous flavor of chocolate is the star; "Essentially Chocolate," with lighter chocolate desserts such as Black and White Creme Brulee, and Brown Butter Blondies; and "A Hint of Chocolate," with recipes such as Three-Bean Chili and John's Cocoa Rub, which use chocolate's spicier qualities to their best effect. In addition, Robert and John describe how they started their business, the trial and error process of making their own chocolate from cacao, and a fascinating chapter on the farmers who grow cacao in Venezuela and the Dominican Republic. Hard cover. 383 pages.