Friday, April 15, 2011

History of Chocolate Manufacturing

A French person consumes an average of 4.8 kg of chocolate per year. How this has happened to delight us? What are the processes of its manufacture?

The history of chocolate begins in Central America, specifically in the area of ​​present-day Mexico. Legend has it that Quetzalcoatl, the Feathered Serpent god, rewarded the heroic act of an Aztec princess by giving its people the cocoa. This princess was killed for refusing to reveal where the treasure was hidden in his empire.

Native to Central America
The Mayans and Aztecs cultivated cacao trees are they harvested the fruit into a drink, the "coattail" they consumed hot. To prepare, they were roasting the cocoa beans and then ground on hot rocks. The resulting paste was heated and mixed with water, chili ... and transformed into a drink.

This drink, nourishing, invigorating aphrodisiac and was reserved, it seems, to men.

Cocoa beans were also used as bargaining chips for taxes, the purchase of slaves ... For example, a turkey was worth 100 beans when fresh avocado was worth 3.

The arrival of cocoa in Europe
In 1519, the conquistador Hernan Cortes landed in Mexico, where he was welcomed by Moctezuma, the Aztec emperor, who thinks he has before him the god Quetzalcoatl who, as promised, returns after a long journey. Montezuma offers him the famous drink made ​​from cocoa. It is assessed at its fair value by the Spaniard, in 1524, sent a shipment of beans to Charles Quint.

Cocoa made its entry into Europe via the Spanish court, where he is popular, although seen as bitter. To suit the tastes of new consumers, we add the vanilla and sugar.

Chocolate spreads gradually on the European continent: he arrived in Italy in 1594, France in 1615 (by the marriage of Louis XIII with Anne of Austria, daughter of Philip III of Spain) and Germany in 1641.

At that time, chocolate is expensive and is only consumed by the nobles, and in South America by Church people.

The chocolate in the industrial era
With the advent of the industrial era, making chocolate is changing and access to its consumption is becoming more democratic. The development of competition on the one hand and manufacturing automation on the other hand, can sell the precious commodity cheaper.

In 1815 the Dutchman Van Houten installs the first chocolate factory, soon followed by five Swiss. Among them, Cailler (1819), Suchard (1824) and Lindt.

In 1819, Cailler manufactured the first chocolate bar.

In 1821, the chewable chocolate was invented by Britain's Cadbury.

In 1822 to meet growing demand, we proceed to the first cocoa plantations in Africa.

In 1824, the French Antoine Menier installs Noisiel-sur-Marne (94) the first chocolate industrial world.

Making Chocolate
The beginning of the string course begins with the harvesting of cocoa pods. Each one contains between 20 and 40 beans to be extracted from their envelope. They are then left to ferment for a few days, which allows them to lose some of their bitterness. They are then exported.

Arrivals in the factory, they are crushed. It remains to remove the shells and roasting.

Cocoa is then milled to obtain the liquefaction of cocoa butter and the production of cocoa paste.

To reduce the butter content of cocoa, a portion of the dough is pressed again. We are then faced with three different ingredients: cocoa liquor, cocoa butter and cocoa fat (or cake).

To get the chocolate as we eat, dark or milk, mix the dough, butter and sugar and vanilla (and milk in the second case). The result of this mixture is conched, that is to say refined by stirring at 80 ° C, which melts the chocolate and gives it flavor and texture.

No comments:

Post a Comment