Who Invented Chocolate?
No one person can claim the credit as the inventor of chocolate
The inventor of chocolate as we know it today is not a single person. The Olmec, Mayan and Aztec civilizations of early Mesoamerica can claim the credit for discovering cocoa beans, which are the main ingredient of chocolate. They ground the beans and mixed them with chile and water to make the world's first chocolate drink.
Then along came Christopher Columbus several hundred years later. He brought cocoa beans back to Europe in the early 1500s. Chocolate drinks soon became popular across Spain, but the rest of Europe wouldn't get to enjoy this treat until nearly 100 years later.
Even then, not everyone could afford chocolate. The first chocolate house in London, The Coffee Mill and Tobacco Roll, opened in 1657, but the price of the chocolate drinks meant that only the upper class could enjoy this new beverage.
However, chocolate was becoming popular in other ways, too. By 1674, it had become an ingredient used in cakes and rolls.
Then in 1732, Monsieur Dubuisson invented a table mill to grind chocolate, which made This was followed by the invention of a steam engine to
The spread and production of chocolate reached another milestone in 1732, when Monsieur Dubuisson of France invented a table mill that could grind chocolate. This was followed in 1795 by Josephy Fry's invention of a steam engine for grinding the beans, which allowed chocolate to be manufactured on a much larger scale.
In addition to inventing the steam engine, Fry also later became the inventor of the world's first chocolate bar in 1847. His company, Fry & Sons, would later merge with chocolate giant Cadbury, which says on their website, "by today's standards, these original chocolate bars would not be considered very palatable."
Other individuals who helped chocolate along its way to worldwide popularity included:
- Conrad van Houten, who invented a hydraulic press in 1829 that extracted the fat from the cacao beans to create powder in a process that is known today as "Dutching."
- Daniel Peters of Switzerland, who produced the first milk chocolate bar in 1875
- Rudolphe Lindt, who invented a process in 1878 called "conching," which improved chocolate by making it more blendable
Thanks to all these inventors of chocolate, this delicious treat is now found all over the world in a variety of flavors, shapes and sizes, and celebrated in movies, books and TV.
Chocolate - it's an invention we can all love!
The History of Hot Chocolate
Do You Learn Something About the History of Chocolate? 27 comments
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