Who doesn’t like chocolate? That creamy goodness with its wonderful texture and amazing taste is really hard to resist. Well, I don’t think there are too many people who can resist it and if you’re one of them you definitely belong to a minority!
I can honestly say that chocolate is my favorite sweet and before writing this article, I always felt guilty when I ate chocolate because I thought it was bad for me.
A little bit of history…
Chocolate comes from a plant called Theobroma cacao, which means “food of the gods” and has been around for over 4,000 years. It was first used to make a spicy drink and was believed to have aphrodisiac, medicinal as well as magical powers.
It was also believed to give strength to those who drank it. Moreover, the Aztecs thought that cacao seeds were a gift from the God of wisdom and they were also used as a form of currency. At first, this drink was really bitter and it was only in the 16th century, in Spain, that sugar was added to it.
But it was in 1828 that a Dutch chemist called Coenraad Van Houten succeeded in creating a press that would produce chocolate powder by removing about half of the fat (cacao butter) from chocolate liquor and by reducing the bitterness with alkaline salts.
Actually, Mr. Van Houten’s innovation launched the modern era of chocolate. From that moment on, this powder was known as “Dutch cocoa” and led to the apparition of solid chocolate.
The awesome journey from cacao beans to solid chocolate
The process to obtain the perfect chocolate bar is a long and meticulous one. Peter Higgins, a chocolate scientist and the president of Purdys Chocolatier, has created a very interesting video that explains thoroughly the awesome journey from cacao beans to solid chocolate.
Mr. Higgins starts at the very beginning when the cocoa tree grows and he teaches us everything we need to know about this.
In the video, he explains the different steps: drying, blending, and shelling which will help the release of cocoa nibs required to transform the cocoa beans into a powder. Cocoa nibs are actually chocolate in its raw form.
You will also learn the difference between milk, dark and white chocolate and finally, couching and tempering which will allow to shaping the liquid chocolate into solid to become the chocolate that you know and love so much. You can check it out all in detail below:
Which parts of your body are affected by chocolate
Surprisingly, it appears that dark chocolate isn’t that bad for you after all, but could be filled with lots of stuff that are good for your body as well as your soul.
This infographic below, created by the folks at Chocolate Guru, explains how those health benefits can contribute to achieving exactly that. Check out the parts of your body that are affected when eating a small piece of dark chocolate on a regular basis:
- Brain booster
- Mood maestro
- Sweets for the sweet
- Dental dynamite
- Mighty muscles
- Levitated libido
- Cancer crusher
- Softer skin
- Vibrant vision
- Stroke stopper
- Pucker power
- Healthier heart
- Belly buster
- Better blood
- Caped crusader
Health benefits of chocolate
So the next time you indulge in a piece of dark chocolate, don’t feel bad! It seems that by adding dark chocolate to your diet, you are actually contributing to staying healthy.
From now on, we can definitely say that chocolate is not only good for the soul, it is also good for the body. Now that’s the best news I heard all year!
Click on infographic to enlarge
|An infographic by the team at Chocolate Guru|