Re: (...)
Okay. Now that I have everyone's attention, let me be honest and say that I don't actually HAVE any chocolate...


Also, I'm not going to be eating the chocolate, but drinking it.

No. I'm not talking about Hershey's, Swiss Miss nor even Callebaut nor Lindt.

Instead, I'm talking about...

[Image: wholed.png]

CACAO!!! The real thing, ripe and straight from the tree!

Unfortunately, it wasn't picked today, so the mucilaginous pulp was almost completely dried out, with just traces of it remaining around the seeds:

[Image: halves.png]

Of course, I did have to try what little pulp there was, but it was DELICIOUS - tasting somewhat like a mixture of lychee, pear and citrus with the smoothness of a peach.

The next things to do are to spread those seeds out in the sun:

[Image: seeds.png]

until they are dried, roast them in a low-temperature oven until they audibly crack twice, grind them up along with some dried out bread (for Mexico) or dried corn (for Honduras), add them to some boiling milk with sugar and cinnamon and enjoy!

I can't wait, but I must.
If blueberry muffins have blueberries in them, what do vegan muffins have?
  Re: CHOCOLATE!!!!! by labradors (Okay. Now that I ha...)
That is VERY cool! I can't wait for your review....but I must...LOL!
Keep your mind wide open.
  Re: Re: CHOCOLATE!!!!! by Gourmet_Mom (That is VERY cool! ...)
Oh man, how interesting, Labs!! I do envy the things you have available to you there - I know, you don't get a lot of what you're used to, but still to try all these things from where they come from. How neat is that.
Retired and having fun writing cookbooks, tasting wine and sharing recipes with all my friends.
  Re: CHOCOLATE!!!!! by labradors (Okay. Now that I ha...)

  Re: Re: CHOCOLATE!!!!! by pjcooks ([img]/ubbthreads/ima...)
I will be anxiously awaiting your review along with the rest! How fascinating!

"Drink your tea slowly and reverently..."
  Re: Re: CHOCOLATE!!!!! by Mare749 (I will be anxiously ...)
One of the things that I've read mentioned that some people boil the pulp down with a bunch of sugar to make a jam. If I start getting more of these, I'd love to try that, especially if the taste of the raw pulp is any indication.
If blueberry muffins have blueberries in them, what do vegan muffins have?
  Re: Re: CHOCOLATE!!!!! by labradors (One of the things th...)
A jam with the flavors of lychee, pear, and citrus-- I hope that you get enough to make jam for us all!

my cooking adventures
  Re: CHOCOLATE!!!!! by labradors (Okay. Now that I ha...)
That looks like such an incredible treat!
You only live once . . . but if you do it right once should be enough!
  Re: Re: CHOCOLATE!!!!! by Harborwitch (That looks like such...)
I can't wait to hear more about your experiments!
  Re: Re: CHOCOLATE!!!!! by karyn (I can't wait to hear...)
YUM! Hot chocolate milk!

Finally roasted, peeled and ground the cacao seeds, today and it went very well. Of course, it smelled wonderful in here while they were roasting. When they were done, they looked like this:

[Image: roasted.jpg]

The shells were easy to remove and, since the beans were not as hard as rocks, I decided to grind them in my spice grinder, which worked perfectly, yielding about 1/4 cup of powder:

[Image: groundu.jpg]

After heating two cups of milk, I added some sugar, some of the cocoa powder and a little cinnamon. Even though many Mexican recipes call for the addition of grated, dried-out bread and the Hondurans add cornmeal, I decided not to add either for my initial test (which IS one of the variations in some parts of Mexico - many even use water, instead of milk). Since some of the solids still floated in the milk, I strained it through a coffee filter.

It was chocolatey and delicious and I still have enough left (the picture, above, was taken AFTER having used some of it) to try it with the bread or cornmeal. What an interesting (and yummy) experiment!
If blueberry muffins have blueberries in them, what do vegan muffins have?

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