1. Separate eggs when they are cold.  This prevents the yolks - which add flavor, color, texture and binding quality - from breaking.

2. Beat egg whites at room temperature.  This allows more air to get into them and thus brings more lightness to your cakes.

3. When a recipe calls for stiffly beaten egg whites, the surest way to know whether they are fully beaten is to tilt the bowl.  If the egg whites stay in the bowl, even when it's turned, they are ready.  If they start to slide around the bowl, they are not ready.  

4. I use best-quality imported chocolate in all of my recipes.  For fine-grinding small amounts of chocolate, I use a Mouli grater.  For larger amounts and for coarse grinding, I recommend a food processor.  Be sure to break the chocolate into small pieces first and grind it in batches, removing one before adding the next.

5. It is easier to beat heavy cream in a chilled metal bowl rather than a glass bowl.  Keep the bowl in the freezer for a short time until it is cold.