December 22, 2006

“Love many things, for therein lies the true strength, and whosoever loves much performs much, and can accomplish much, and what is done in love is well done.” – Vincent Van Gogh

Chocolate Morsel of the Day

A little longer today, and probably the last until the holidays are over.

There are general types of cocoa beans. Criollo, Forastero, and the hybrid of the two, Trinatario. Many people consider Criollo to be the “holy grail” of cocoa due to it’s delicate flavor and rarity, but a name does not make a chocolate good. Criollo has the oportunity to be great (sublime, delicate and fruity), but a bad fermintation can ruin it (flat, pasty, bitter and tasteless), and that appears to happen quite often. Choose your cocoa based on what it tastes like, not what it is called. Likewise, Forastero is common, but that doesn’t mean it is not good. Good Forastero is wonderful, deep and rich – everything we love in chocolate. Unfortunately, when it is bad, it is really bad (think bitter, astringent, mouth puckering, unsweetened baker’s chocolate that I KNOW you tasted as a child).

So enter into chocolate making with an open mind. Ignore the labels, read the discriptions, taste it yourself and go from there.