Sub unsweetened for bitter-sweet chocolate chunks

Making a chocolate pavlova. Have a recipe that (Nigella Lawson) that requires to add some chopped chocolate through the (what looks to be) super sugary meringue. Because the high sugar content in meringue, I wanted to replace the normal bitter-sweet chocolate chunks with unsweetened chocolate chunks (ghirardelli 100% cocoa unsweetened baking bar - chopped). Seems the bitter chunks will be great with the heavy sweetness? Any thoughts whether this should work or not?

  • Posted by: radhaks
  • February 13, 2014


Kels M. February 16, 2014
Looks absolutely gorgeous!
radhaks February 16, 2014
So, I went for using the 100% ghirardelli bar - chopped finely - in the meringue. Then topped with vanilla whipped cream/mascarpone (unsweetened) and red wine poached cherries. I also shaved some of the bitter chocolate over the top. Was a huge hit with all - except me…cause the meringue was too sweet! I will make this again for others, but for me, this type of dessert is just not necessary - due to the heavy sweetness. I couldn't even taste the chocolate! Everyone raved! Huge hit - thanks for all the responses & I'm glad I used bitter chocolate after all. See image attached.
Kels M. February 14, 2014
Sounds like you like that bitter bite, so go for it!
Maedl February 14, 2014
Report back!
radhaks February 14, 2014
Thanks for all your responses! I was hoping that the 100% chocolate would work in a way that cocoa nibs are used - which are also bittery - but without the super crunch. I usually snack on cocoa nibs w dry cherries & almonds & I love it. I might try this recipe w the 100% chocolate, but if a pre-taste seems horrible, I can also get the lindt 90% here, so will have that as a backup plan. Thanks again for the feedback.
Maedl February 13, 2014
Lindt's makes a 90% chocolate, which is widely available in my area.
LeBec F. February 13, 2014
well, i think your idea is excellent,rad. But then I have never met a pavlova i liked because they are all so toothachingly sweet. Airiness cuts the sweetness?! Air is like the concept of Zero. Take away Air from the sugar and all you're left with is sugar. blech.
Try your idea. If it needs to be sweeter, add sugar. (and while you could make your own 90% chocolate by mixing different percentages, i have never seen 90% at my vendors.....)
Maedl February 13, 2014
Unsweetened chocolate puckers your mouth. I would use a 90% chocolate rather than the unsweetened.
nashama February 13, 2014
I haven't made this recipe, but unsweetened chocolate is beyond bitter. I would think bittersweet chocolate is enough to cut the sweetness of the meringue. That said, I don't find most meringues cloyingly sweet - the sugar helps to provide structure, but the final product is airy enough to cut its own sweetness a bit once baked.
Recommended by Food52