Pana Barbounis
0 recipes
Published by
Hardie Grant Books
Armelle Habib, Chris Middleton

Most of our recipes can be made using the basic utensils and equipment found in the average kitchen. However, here’s a list of the main items that we use frequently. While these items will make life in the kitchen a little easier, don’t worry if you don’t have everything. We’ll suggest alternatives where possible.


We use a bain-marie (also known as a double boiler) to heat and melt ingredients, as it works slowly. When used with a thermometer, this means you can ensure your ingredients don’t overheat. The hot water is housed in the bain-marie and kept at a temperature required for raw food production. We then place a metal pan over the water, allowing us to melt ingredients or bring them up to the desired temperature.

If you don’t have a bain-marie, don’t worry. You can create a similar effect with a bowl sitting over another bowl of hot water.

To ensure your ingredients and recipes remain raw, the temperature of the mixture should never go over 42°C. This applies to all the recipes in this book.

Chocolate moulds/cake frames

These come in different materials, such as stainless steel, and give a professional finish to your cakes and chocolates. You can even use ice-cube moulds – that’s how we started at Pana Chocolate while perfecting the flavour!

The right size cake frame can make life easy. It’s a support for your cake and provides beautiful edges. Using a cake frame or the right size cake tin when portioning also helps minimise waste. If you don’t have a cake frame at home, a square brownie tin will work just as well.


A food dehydrator uses a heat source and air flow to reduce the water content of foods. Removing moisture from food keeps various bacteria from growing and spoiling food. The dehydrator is usually set to 40°C, which means the food remains raw, and retains its nutritional content.

A dehydrator is a great way to achieve different textures for raw desserts. You can make biscuits and crackers, tart shells, etc. Although dehydrating is quite a slow process, given the low temperatures involved, this is a key piece of equipment if you’re serious about raw food.

Dehydrating fruit for garnishes is also a great way to leave the fruit vibrant in colour, while making it suitable to garnish a cake for a cabinet.

Some recipes call for a standard mesh tray in the dehydrator, and some need a non-stick sheet. If you don’t have a non-stick sheet, a sheet of baking paper will work, too.

Many of our recipes call for a mixture to be dehydrated overnight. It doesn’t actually have to be night-time – just make sure you dehydrate for around 8–10 hours!

No dehydrator? No worries! Just turn your oven to the lowest temperature setting and place your mixture in the oven on a lined tray for approximately 1 hour. When using the oven, use the suggested times as a guide only, as each oven varies in its lowest temperature.

Nut milk bag

Nut milk bags are used when making your own nut milk, to strain the liquid from the pulp. If you don’t have one at home, a piece of muslin (cheesecloth) will work just as well.

High-powered food processor

High-powered food processors are used to make cake bases and nut butters, and for chopping nuts and more heavy-duty items. The food processor won’t achieve a smooth result like a blender, but it will be your best friend if you’re after a fine crumb.

High-speed blender

High-speed blenders are used to blend soaked nuts to achieve a smooth result. These are generally used for raw cakes, smoothies and liquid components.


Rulers, spatulas, palette knives, paring knives and serrated knives are commonly used at Pana Chocolate, and they’ll help you to get the finish you’re after.

A ruler plays a key part in getting a perfectly portioned slice and ensuring a consistent product.

A spatula is used mainly for scraping things out of bowls and blenders. Its rubber surface ensures less waste, compared with using a metal or wooden spoon. A spatula is also good for folding in ingredients.

A palette knife can be used to scrape excess chocolate off a mould. It’s also good for pushing down the base of a raw cake or getting an even surface when compacting a base, brownie or slice. A small palette knife can help lift something delicate onto a plate to avoid fingerprints and damages to the finish.

A paring knife is good for slicing fruit, trimming the sides of a slice or cake and marking out garnishes on chocolate (for example, ruling a square or triangle shape). It’s easy to handle and control.

A serrated knife is great to cut cakes and slices. It’s especially handy if you need to cut a cake that has chunks of nuts inside.

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