With dozens of Truffles and other chocolate creations to choose from, it seems impossible to have just one. (Ashley Finethy) (click for larger version)
March 07, 2012CAMPTON — Joan Clay, owner of Clay's Chocolate Shop, is beginning to gear up for spring and the Easter holiday at her shop in Campton by preparing her seasonal sweet treats.
"Eater is coming up, and this year, we still have all of our ducks, bunnies, eggs and panoramic eggs—the whole nine yards," said Clay. "We also do specialty cakes, but they need to be ordered ahead of time, and we're going to be making fudge eggs and truffle eggs this year."
The traditional chocolate bunnies at Clay's Chocolate Shop range in size, and may also weigh as much as a real bunny.
"Our biggest chocolate rabbits we make are over three pounds of solid chocolate, but we only do those special order," said Clay. "Even the eight ounce hallow ones are a good size. It's a lot of chocolate."
Chocolate eggs are also made in a variety of different sizes, and come with a variety of different fillings.
"We make dinosaur eggs all the way down to the four inch sized eggs," said Clay. "We make about ten different types of truffle eggs, but we can make others, too."
For adults looking to turn Easter into another occasion to consume adult beverages, Clay's also makes alcoholic eggs, making the holiday fun for adults, too.
"It's basically an alcohol truffle in the shape of an egg," explained Clay. "It's a chocolate truffle, and we add pretty much any type of alcohol to it. I like rum for alcohol truffles. But we sell a lot of them. We put them in the case because they do make a nice gift. We put a lot of them in our adult Easter baskets."
Clay makes a variety of baskets for Easter, including adult baskets, but is willing to customize her baskets to make them special.
"We make baskets for people, and sometimes, they'll bring in what they want in it, and they'll pick out a rabbit or a few other things and we'll make it up for them," said Clay.
If you're not a chocolate fan, Clay has other alternatives for spring that are sure to satisfy your sweet tooth, including their own version of cake pops.
"We are going to be putting our own spin on cake pops," said Clay. "They have become very popular, but our twist is that they are going to be filled or dipped in caramel and rolled. We've been brainstorming because I don't want to do the same thing everybody else is doing."
Also, Clay will be baking a wide variety of cookies for spring to satisfy a craving for sweets.
"We are bringing back Easter cookies this year," said Clay. "We do sugar cookies, we do almond ones, chocolate cookies and we do a variety of chocolate chip, chocolate chip and walnut, oatmeal raisin cinnamon. We make a lot of cookies."
The shop has been open since 1994, and Clay never gets tired of constantly making and creating new treats.
"The nice thing about this business is that every three or four months, it changes," Clay pointed out. "We are going from seasonal winter things into spring and summer stuff."
Not only does Clay enjoy the ever changing world of chocolate, but she has a deep passion for baking, cooking and chocolate in general that she hopes she can find in future chocolatiers.
"It is a passion, and it's a great thing to do," said Clay. "If I could find someone with the same fire, that would be absolutely fabulous because this isn't just coming in and making candy; it's not just something you come in and do. It takes finesse and attention to detail, and most of these are formulas, and not really recipes. You can't really deviate from the formula because if you do, fudge turns to sludge, and you now have an ice cream topping."
Clay's Chocolate Shop also takes pride in the fact that their chocolate is homemade, and only uses the essential ingredients to make the purest and most natural treats.
"There should be five ingredients in your chocolate; if there is more than that… run," Clay said jokingly. "The base chocolate should have chocolate liquor, coco butter, salt, milk solid or cream, and a trace of lecithin, which is a stabilizer. That's all that's in mine."
Clay's Chocolate Shop is located at 25 Wintinner Rd. in Campton. They can be reached at 726-7744, or at their Web site, www.clayschocolates.com.