How is chocolate made is very interesting, from the origination to those chocolate dessert recipes. The cocoa trees growing cocoa beans are native to the Americas and have been there for thousands of years.
If ever visiting around the Amazon it is worth taking the time to see the plantations where the trees are being grown. Wild cacao also is still being found there. Each country has its own unique flavor in the cacao bean but that is not the complete story of the chocolate flavor you experience. Many facts affect the final products.
The pods of the cacao tree are harvested when they become ripe. The pods are opened and the pulp and seeds are removed. The seeds and pulp undergo “sweating” and the thick pulp liquidizes as it ferments. The beans are dried on huge trays in the sun and then are shipped to the processing plants in various countries and this is the beginning of our education.
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Chocolate Facts like where it is grown, how is chocolate made and its importance through the years with recipes.
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There are many chocolate facts to learn. How is chocolate made starts in the processing plant where the beans are washed and then roasted. They are then cracked and the hulls are removed. The remaining pieces of the bean are called nibs and are ground to make a paste which is a rough form of pure chocolate. This paste is usually liquefied into a liquor and then processed into cocoa solids or cocoa butter.
Depending on the amount of fat or cocoa butter in the content, various types of chocolate are made. When you learn how is chocolate made you know it takes about 500 beans to make one pound of chocolate. It has become the most popular flavor for people around the world to eat for this reason we decided to have a chocolate contest. Today thousands of pounds of it are used in the baking in our kitchens. Many people also enjoy the chocolate touch by way of ornamental designs or facials and massages.
How is chocolate made determines the types of chocolate in the finished product. Unsweetened or sometimes called bittersweet is a dark chocolate. It is used a lot in baking and has a small portion of sugar but more liquor; according to FDA it must have at least 35 per cent either cacao solids or butter from the cacao beans. This can be used in many chocolate dessert recipes such as chocolate layer cakes, gourmet cupcake recipes, no bake dessert recipes, soufflé, a cookie recipe or a tart recipe.
Semi sweet is also used quite often in baking, especially in the form of semi sweet chips for chocolate chip cookie recipes. This is also the kind used for yummy chocolate doughnuts. It is a dark chocolate and has half as much sugar as cocoa. Other uses for this are a chocolate frosting recipe, chocolate cheesecake, chocolate fudge cake recipe or a gourmet cupcake recipe. German chocolate is considered a dark chocolate and also falls into this category which I use for my Best cake recipe.
You will find milk chocolate more commonly in the form of candy bars or candy pieces for eating. When you know how is chocolate made you realize it is made with milk in the form of milk powder, liquid milk or condensed milk. Easy chocolate recipes can be made from the milk like dipping fruits or dipping pretzels. A chocolate fudge recipe is delicious no matter how is chocolate made.
When knowing how is chocolate made, some consider white chocolate not to be a chocolate at all, because of the lack of cocoa solids. It is a confection based on sugar, milk and according to FDA must have a minimum of 20 per cent cocoa butter to be a chocolate. This product is used a lot in candy making. This is not to be confused with white confection coating which is also used in candy making but is not chocolate.
Cocoa powder can be purchased with or without sugar. I prefer the unsweetened Hersheys cocoa powder. When you know how is chocolate made you realize it is so versatile in cooking and baking is the least expensive and has the longest shelf life. The powdered cocoa is great for use in many chocolate recipes such as a chocolate pie recipe, a chocolate icing recipe, flourless chocolate cake recipe, chocolate fudge or a chocolate pudding recipe. It is also used in many of the cake mix recipes which are in boxes at the grocery.
When storing chocolate for your cooking, the ideal temperature should be between 59 to 63 F degrees with humidity of less than 50 per cent. It is very sensitive to temperature changes. Store it away from other foods as it can absorb other flavors and odors.
EASY CREAM CHEESE SQUARES
Pat one roll of cookie dough in bottom of greased 9 X 13 inch baking pan.
Cream together the cheese, eggs, sugar and vanilla; spread over top of dough.
Crumble second roll of cookie dough on top of cream cheese mixture.
Bake at 350F degrees for about 30 minutes; dough will be soft in center.
Cool and cut into bars.
NO BAKE BARS CALLED CHOCOLATE DELIGHTS
Melt ½ cup butter in large saucepan; add cocoa, sugar, eggs and vanilla.
Cook over medium heat until thickened; remove from heat.
Stir in cracker crumbs and nuts; mix until blended.
Press mixture in bottom of 8 inch square pan; chill until set.
Cream 3 tablespoons softened butter with pudding mix.
Blend in powdered sugar and spread over chilled crust.
Melt remaining 1 ½ tablespoons butter with chocolate; spread over pudding layer.
Chill and cut into bars.