- Food and Cooking
Little-Known Facts about Chocolate
Chocolate is a delicious treat that is both delicious and inexpensive. But, there are some facts about chocolate that can really help your chocolate experience. As a baker, I have learned a lot about chocolate and the process of making chocolate. I am a big fan of the delicious treat and I would like to share with you what I know.
Cocoa Content Isn't Everything!
There has been a myth going around that states:
The higher the cocoa content, the better quality of chocolate.
This is false. Cocoa content is how much cocoa in a bar of chocolate. The higher the cocoa content, the more bitter the bar will be. You see, cocoa comes from the cacao tree. Cocoa itself is very bitter but, when mixed in with other ingredients, it becomes sweeter.
So, if you have a chocolate bar with 100% cocoa content, you will have a very bitter tasting chocolate bar. About 60% cocoa is considered dark chocolate. 60%-70% is considered the best tasting chocolate.
Cocoa Comes from Trees!
Did you know that cocoa comes from trees? It's true! In fact, cocoa comes from three different types of trees. The three trees are Forastero,Trinitario, and Criollo.
The Forastero is the most commercially available. It is cheaper than the Criollo thus making it desirable to use in chocolate making. Companies like Hershey's uses Forastero cocoa in their chocolate.
Criollo is the original cacao tree, If you get a chocolate bar from this tree, you are getting the real deal. It has a very fruity yet bitter taste to it. Good quality chocolate will be made from this.
Lastly, the Trinitario. The Trinitario is the "baby" of the Forastero and the Criollo. This cocoa will give you the aroma of the Criollo but the hardiness of the Forastero.
Are you a chocoholic?
Chocolate is GOOD for You!
Before you stop reading and run to the store to grab all the chocolate ever, let me specify that dark chocolate is good for you.
If you eat a square of chocolate with at least 60% cocoa content, your body will benefit;
- It will lower your blood pressure.
- It will improve cognitive function.
- It will make you happier.
- It will help control your blood sugar.
- It will reduce your risk of cavities.