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Category Archives: Learning about chocolate

Its all about chocolate and cocoa with a conscience.

It’s a long journey from cocoa tree to chocolate.

It’s a long journey from cocoa tree to chocolate, but one always worth taking! Here are all the most crucial steps that see raw cocoa beans turning into shining chocolate bars:

HARVESTING. When the cocoa trees that grow in tropical climates start showing the first ripe cocoa pods, these are picked by farmers with a machete and collected right on the field. The cocoa pods are opened and their inside (cocoa beans + white mucilage) is collected inside big buckets and brought to the fermentation center.
FERMENTING. Together with the white mucilage that surrounds them, the beans are placed into large wooden boxes, and they are turned regularly throughout the following 3-5 days. The temperature inside the box raises naturally to 40-50°, enabling all the bacterial and yeast activities to take place.
DRYING. After some days in the fermentation box, the cocoa beans still contain a high level of moisture that needs to be removed to avoid molding. The beans are moved to outdoor patios or movable carros to dry outside under the sun for a few more days. Once dried, the beans are sorted, bagged and shipped.
ROASTING. When they receive their precious cacao, chocolate makers roast it for two main reasons: flavor development and sanitization. Times and temperatures will vary depending on the bean type and specific goal of each chocolate maker.
CRACKING & WINNOWING. After roasting, the outer shell of the beans becomes thin and brittle. The beans can then be cracked and the shells be winnowed from the cocoa nibs that will be used for the production of chocolate.
GRINDING & CONCHING. These two processes are often combined in one single machine, the melangeur. First, the nibs are ground into a thick paste known as cocoa mass. While the cocoa mass keeps being refined inside the melangeur, chocolate makers add all the other ingredients like sugar, milk or vanilla. This step will be completed when the desired texture and flavor are achieved.
TEMPERING. During this process, the temperature of the chocolate is raised and lowered to achieve the right consistency and the stabilization of the crystals. This is what gives the chocolate its traditional shine and sharp snap.
MOULDING. Once tempered, the melted chocolate is poured into the stylish molds and either tapped against a hard surface or put on vibrating platforms to remove air bubbles.
WRAPPING. When the chocolate has completely cooled down, the final bar is carefully inspected to meet quality standards, and then wrapped in foil or paper packaging to keep it fresh.
The chocolate is finally ready to be savoured and enjoyed. What a journey!

Original post by DENNIS VAN ESSEN

 

KERST EN NIEUWJAAR 2020/21

GREEP UIT HET ASSORTIMENT VOOR KERST EN NIEUWJAAR 2020/21

ZOALS ELK JAAR 4 BUCHES VERKRIJGBAAR IN 3/4/5 MAX 6 PERSONEN

1/ VOOR DE ECHTE CHOCOLADE-LIEFHEBBERS
twee soorten chocolademousse”Colombia” Original Beans en Ecuador*

2/ ALS HET IETS ZACHTER MAG…
gianduja hazelnoot/amandel en chocolademousse”Chuncho” Original Beans*

3/ WE GAAN VOOR IETS ANDERS…
Amandelmelk, vanille en exotische aromas…**

4/ WE KUNNEN NIET KIEZEN…
Chocolademousse “Chuncho” Peru 65% en frambozen-mango*

*vanilleanglaise **coulis framboos

VOOR HET OVERIGE ZIJN ER WEL NOG WAT KEUZES TE MAKEN IN WINKEL
BELANGRIJK VOOR DE VIENNOISERIE: het is beter te bestellen, want een glazenbol heb ik niet 😉

VOOR ZOWEL KERST EN NIEUWJAAR HANTEREN WE DEZELFDE OPENINGSUREN

DONDERDAG 24 DEC (KERSTAVOND) : 8 uur tot 18 uur
VRIJDAG KERSTDAG : 8 uur tot 14 uur
ZATERDAG 26 DEC : 8 uur tot 16 uur
ZONDAG 27 DEC : 7 uur tot 15 uur

 

Nieuw onderzoek toont aan dat cacao ons slimmer kan maken!

Bijna 60% van de totale inname van flavonoïden is afkomstig van fruit en cacao

Flavanolen, een bestanddeel dat aanwezig is in dit voedsel, verhogen de zuurstofvoorziening van de hersenen en verbeteren de mentale behendigheid bij zeer moeilijke cognitieve taken.

Afgelopen juli werd in een studie uitgevoerd door de Universiteit van Barcelona en het Idibell (Bellvitge Biomedical Research Institute) de oorsprong onderzocht van flavonoïden , natuurlijke pigmenten die het lichaam beschermen: ze toonden aan dat bijna 60% van de totale inname van flavonoïden komt uit fruit en cacao .

Deze plantaardige pigmenten hebben antioxiderende en ontstekingsremmende eigenschappen. Tot nu toe hebben eerdere studies kunnen bevestigen dat diëten die rijk zijn aan flavanolen beschermen tegen cognitieve veroudering en gekoppeld zijn aan een lager risico op dementie, maar nieuw onderzoek door professoren aan de Universiteit van Birmingham heeft een stap verder kunnen gaan.

Eerdere studies
Ze hadden bevestigd dat flavanolen beschermen tegen cognitieve veroudering en verband houden met een lager risico op dementie.

Flavanolen, een bestanddeel dat aanwezig is in cacao, verhogen de zuurstofvoorziening van de hersenen en verbeteren de mentale behendigheid bij zeer moeilijke cognitieve taken
 

Door het effect van cacaoconsumptie bij gezonde jonge volwassenen te analyseren, heeft de studie gepubliceerd in Scientific Reports aangetoond dat het leidt tot snellere hersenoxygenatiereacties en verbetert de mentale prestaties in het licht van hoge cognitieve eisen .

Het onderzoek werd uitgevoerd dankzij de deelname van 18 vrijwilligers tussen 18 en 40 jaar oud. Sommigen van hen kregen een placebo – een cacaodrank met een laag gehalte aan flavanolen – en anderen slikten de drank in met een extra aanvulling van deze pigmenten . De respons op complexe cognitieve taken en oxygenatie van de hersenen varieerde tussen de twee groepen.

Studiegebieden
Oxygenatie en mentale behendigheid bij complexe taken

De vrijwilligers werden blootgesteld aan een atmosfeer met 100 keer hogere kooldioxideconcentraties dan normaal, om het risico op natuurlijke wijze te verhogen en om de veranderingen in oxygenatie te kunnen analyseren. Later werd de nabij-infraroodspectroscopietechniek gebruikt , waarmee de veranderingen in het zuurstofniveau in het bloed zichtbaar werden.

Degenen die de cacaodrank met het flavanolsupplement hadden ingenomen, vertoonden een betere en intensievere zuurstofvoorziening in de frontale laterale gebieden van de hersenen . De respons in die gevallen was een minuut sneller dan die van degenen die een placebo hadden ingenomen.

Gebruikers die de drank met flavanolen hebben geconsumeerd
Ze vertoonden een betere en intensere oxygenatie in de frontale laterale hersengebieden

Ten slotte liet het onderzoek ook zien hoe een hogere inname van flavanolen direct verband hield met de nauwkeurigheid en snelheid waarmee gebruikers complexe taken konden voltooien. Aan de andere kant kon in de eenvoudige middagen geen verandering worden gewaardeerd.

De auteurs van de studie hebben opgemerkt dat deze componenten grotendeels worden aangetroffen in fruit en groenten, en dat het belangrijk is om bewust te zijn van de voordelen die ze opleveren voor onze gezondheid, om te laten zien dat we eerder geneigd zijn ze permanent in onze voeding op te nemen.

BRON: https://www.lavanguardia.com/comer/al-dia/20201201/6062439/estudio-demuestra-cacao-hacernos-inteligentes.amp.html

 

Fermentation & Flavor Development

In the chocolate industry, fermentation is considered one of the crucial steps for the development of all the amazing flavors we experience in fine chocolate. The harvested beans, still covered in their white pulp, are loaded into buckets and transported to a central fermentation area for processing, often mixed in with beans from neighboring farms. Farmers then transfer the cocoa beans to specialized fermenting “sweatboxes”, usually covering them with banana leaves. Here is where the magic happens, or rather where science and nature join forces to develop the precursors of all the chocolatey flavors we so adore.

The process works something like this: the sugars inside the white pulp – glucose, fructose and sucrose – are transformed into alcohol. The alcohol then turns into acetic acid that diffuses into the beans themselves. The chemical reactions involved in fermentation produce a significant amount of heat, making the pile of beans reach temperatures up to 55°C after a few days. The germ within the bean dies and this triggers the release of enzymes. These enzymes are important for the development of chocolate flavors. We can say that these naturally occurring microorganism kick-start the fermentation process, changing the sugars in the pulp to organic acids, and giving the beans their flavor.

After 2-3 days, farmers turn the pile over. This helps to ensure an even fermentation and introduces air into the fermentation process which, depending on the cacao variety, can last up to 7 days.

Fermentation has such a big impact on the cocoa beans that, even by using the same exact cocoa beans, results can vary widely when tiny changes are made during the fermentation process (how long the beans stay inside the boxes, how many times they are turned, etc). Some craft chocolate makers have fun experimenting with cacao that has been subjected to different fermentation protocols. The results are chocolate bars with completely different aromatic profiles, even if they are made with the exact same beans!

thanks to DENNIS VAN ESSEN

 

Dick Taylor Madagascar Sambirano Dark Chocolate

Koko Buzz

Dick Taylor Open Bar 406 If you think this intricate molding is hard to achieve, it’s even more difficult without soy lecithin.   What a beautiful presentation!

I’ve found myself in a rut this year somehow eating only simple chocolates including some quasi-mass-market brands.  It’s what’s been lying around the kitchen and it has done a fine job at satisfying my impulse cravings, but has not been all that interesting.  That all changed when I found myself in Harvard Square this weekend where I stepped into the landmark gourmet shop – Cardullo’s.  Like other shops around the country, I’ve seen their selection of artisan chocolates slowly dwindle in recent years, but I knew I could rely upon them to have something beyond the average confection.

There I found Bonnat – too delicate, Dolfin – over refined, Antidote – fun, but I was not in the mood, and then Dick Taylor – perfect, reliably excellent.  And…

View original post 250 more words

 

What’s the REAL expiration date of chocolate bars?

When you buy a chocolate bar, you are inclined to check the expiration date written on the packaging to figure out how long the chocolate will be edible for (in case this is even an issue). Or in other cases, you will find a chocolate bar hidden somewhere in your house and look at the expiration date to see if it’s still safe to eat.

You might be surprised to know that, despite the expiration date, chocolate stays edible and safe to eat for longer than what’s indicated on the packaging.

Chocolate bars last longer than other foods because there is no water activity in them, which means that there is no environment for bacterial growth. Also the amount of cocoa butter in it has a stabilizing effect on the chocolate. This is why you will rarely find a proper Expiration Date on chocolate bars, but most likely a Best Before Date, to indicate that the chocolate will maintain its best aromatic and textural properties until that period of time.

However, chocolate makers, whether artisanal or industrial, are very cautious with best before dates. They’d rather indicate a shorter time-frame than a longer one.

Chocolate bars are best eaten as fresh as possible, but they can still be considered edible a few months after the best before date printed on the packaging. Depending on the type of chocolate, the integrity of the package and the kind of storage, there are some general indications to follow.

Dark chocolate is known for lasting longer than milk and white chocolate.The absence of dairy content makes it less perishable. If unopened and stored properly, dark chocolate lasts 2 years (from the day it was made). If opened, but still stored properly, the rule of thumb is one year.
As for milk and white chocolate bars, the time available is cut in half. One year if unopened and stored properly, and 6-8 months if opened and stored properly.

Some chocolate professionals also believe that chocolate becomes better as time goes by. Like wine, some new flavors may develop in the chocolate bar with aging.

22 SEPTEMBER 2020 BY DENNIS VAN ESSEN

 

Moves to clean up chocolate industry are racing ahead.

Moves to clean up chocolate industry are racing ahead | World news | The Guardian
Photograph: fitopardo.com/Getty Images
 

Chocolate gets its origin and domestication story rewritten

Long believed to have been domesticated in Central America some 4,000 years ago, cacao has a more interesting story than previously thought #WorldChocolateDay
https://www.nationalgeographic.com/culture/2018/10/chocolate-domestication-cocoa-ecuador/?cmpid=org=ngp::mc=social::src=twitter::cmp=editorial::add=tw20200707hist-resurfcocoahistory::rid=&sf235736518=1
 

tomesaveur item op Instagram: “『カントゥ』『オリジナルビーンズ』 オンラインショップにて全品10%オフ! ◆◆QANTU/カントゥ◆◆…”

Bron: tomesaveur item op Instagram: “『カントゥ』『オリジナルビーンズ』 オンラインショップにて全品10%オフ! ◆◆QANTU/カントゥ◆◆…”

 

For those who think white chocolate isn’t ‘real’ chocolate, have we got bars for you – The Washington Post

White chocolate with almond. Black base, chocolate in the background.
Available in our shop.

for-those-who-think-white-chocolate-isnt-real-chocolate

 

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