I have been doing research and reading on chocolate tastings. It started with a post I read with the recipe for cold brewed cacao. I purchased Theo cacao nibs, got out my mortar and pestle and ground them as the instructions suggested. It was a rather meditative process, taking around fifteen minutes. I cold brewed the ground ground nibs for 16 hours-OMG! It was so delicious, sophisticated, tasty and non sweet. My daughter suggestedadding vanilla vodka in it over ice. I thought maybe Kahlua. It would also be good 1/2 coffee, 1/2 cacao. Many variations!
Theobromine is the stimulant in cacao. Like caffeine, the cacao bean contains a stimulant and affects the heart rate. Unlike caffeine, though, and more like Viagra, Theobromine dilates blood vessels. Win-win!
From this adventure I moved onto chocolate tasting. When I was in Missoula last week, I picked up several 'bean to bars' and mixed country of origin bars. My two brothers, hubby, myself and sister in law sampled several different chocolates from the makers. Water was our palate cleanser. (Check out our wine bottle! ha!) Hands down the Stevensville chocolate bar was the winner! Any coincidence it had the highest sugar content? Burnt Fork Bend is the brandname. We are headed back to Missoula for the marathon in 2 weeks and have made arrangements to visit this local chocolate maker in Stevi.
It was very interesting discerning the differences in the cacaos. Taste, smell, texture all played a role. I have plans to continue with these fun tastings!
As a working artist/retired art educator, I've always lived the artful life. Let's share!