Chocolate Facts

Some chocolate facts for you to contemplate!

Nine out of ten people like chocolate. The tenth person always lies. --John Q. Tullius, artist/cartoonist

Chocolate most commonly comes in dark, milk, and white varieties, with cocoa solids contributing to the brown coloration.

Chocolate comprises a number of raw and processed foods produced from the seed of the tropical Theobroma tree.

A lot of these chocolate facts have been taken from Wikipedia

History of Chocolate

Cacao has been cultivated for at least three millennia in Mexico, Central and South America, with its earliest documented use around 1100 BC.

How to Make Chocolate

The seeds of the cacao tree have an intense bitter taste, and must be fermented to develop the flavor.

After fermentation, the beans are dried, cleaned, and roasted, and the shell is removed to produce cacao nibs.

The nibs are then ground to cocoa mass, pure chocolate in rough form.

This cocoa mass is usually liquefied then molded with or without other ingredients, it is called chocolate liquor.

The liquor also may be processed into two components: cocoa solids and cocoa butter.

Unsweetened baking chocolate (bitter chocolate) contains primarily cocoa solids and cocoa butter in varying proportions.

Unsweetened chocolate is pure chocolate liquor, also known as bitter or baking chocolate.

It is unadulterated chocolate: the pure, ground, roasted chocolate beans impart a strong, deep chocolate flavor.

Types of Chocolate

Much of the chocolate consumed today is in the form of sweet chocolate, combining cocoa solids, cocoa butter or other fat, and sugar.

This is another reason why sweet chocolate should NOT be eaten when on a candida diet.

    Milk chocolate is sweet chocolate that additionally contains milk powder or condensed milk.

    Much of the chocolate consumed today is in the form of sweet chocolate, combining chocolate with sugar.

    White chocolate contains cocoa butter, sugar, and milk but no cocoa solids.

    Semisweet chocolate is a dark chocolate with a low sugar content.

Need I say more!

Health Benefits of Dark Chocolate

Cocoa solids contain alkaloids such as theobromine and phenethylamine, which have physiological effects on the body. It has been linked to serotonin levels in the brain.

Some research found that chocolate, eaten in moderation, can lower blood pressure.

Dark chocolate has also been said to reduce the possibility of a heart attack when consumed regularly in small amounts.

More chocolate facts - that you might like to hear about.

Chocolate is a good source of antioxidants. It is rich in a type of antioxidant called polyphenols. Polyphenols are also found in red wine and tea.

According to researchers at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, the same antioxidant properties found in red wine are also found in chocolate. These protect against heart disease and possibly cancer.

Doctors ask their patients with heart problems to take a baby aspirin a day. The reason for this is to thin the blood and reduce the likelihood of clots forming. Research at the department of nutrition at the University of California, Davis, found that chocolate also thins the blood and works the same way as the aspirin to perform the anti-clotting activity.

Bittersweet chocolate is chocolate liquor to which some sugar (typically a third),more cocoa butter, vanilla and sometimes lecithin have been added.

It has less sugar and more liquor than semisweet chocolate, but the two are interchangeable in baking.

More Interesting Chocolate Facts


Yes, there are calories in chocolate!

Nearly all the calories in a typical chocolate bar are sugar and fat.

The fat that is used is a saturated vegetable fat, called stearic acid. Stearic acid acts in the body much like the monounsaturated fat in olive oil.

This fat has a neutral effect on cholesterol.

Remember that milk chocolate contains added butterfat, which raises cholesterol. It also has less of the antioxidants.

Keep in mind, the low quality, inferior chocolate and high quality, superior dark chocolate are two different things.

The low quality chocolate must be regarded as junk food, while the superior dark chocolate can be considered nutritious.

In spite of all the hype about chocolate not being good for us, chocolate has become one of the most popular food types and flavors in the world.

For you chocolate lovers, I will add some chocolate recipes and more chocolate facts.

Dogs and Chocolate

One very important chocolate fact to remember is that chocolate is toxic to some animals, especially dogs and cats.

Some Chocolate Recipes for Chocolate Lovers

I found this All American Chocolate Pudding in the same book. I have to share it with you. This book is packed full of interesting chocolate facts and beautiful colored pictures.

A combination of unsweetened chocolate and bittersweet chocolate is used in this recipe.

Ingredients

    1 cup sugar

    1/3 cup cornstarch

    pinch of salt

    3 large egg yolks, lightly beaten

    4 cups whole milk

    6 oz. bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped

    2 oz. unsweetened chocolate, finely chopped

    2 tsp. vanilla extract

Directions

Stir together the sugar, cornstarch, and salt in a heavy large saucepan. Gradually whisk in the egg yolks until combined, then gradually whisk in the milk.

Cook the mixture over medium heat, stirring constantly with the whisk for about 10 minutes. The mixture will thicken as it comes to a boil.

Remove the pan from the heat and whisk in the bittersweet and unsweetened chocolate and vanilla until smooth.

Quickly pour the mixture through a strainer into a large bowl.

Cover the surface of the pudding with a piece of plastic wrap to prevent a skin from forming on the top.

Refrigerate until chilled.

Makes 6 large servings.

ENJOY!

Another interesting chocolate fact is about Nutella. For those of you who have not heard of Nutella, it is a chocolate hazelnut spread that outsells all peanut butter brands combined.

It was created in Italy in the 1940's by Pietro Ferrero, a pastry maker and founder of the Fererro Company. It's delicious!

Did you know that chocolate melts in your hand, so you have some left for later?

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