The Chocolate Life

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Watching the video of cocoa shell tea made me wonder about some of the other out of the ordinary drinks that are made from cocoa. I'd love to hear some recipes and get some insight from others. I know that is how it all started but the art appears to have been lost after the first chocolate bar.

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I don't think that I'd say the art has been lost. It simply isn't very popular in "developed" countries to make chocolate drinks, when compared with the popularity of solid chocolate. Take a trip to Mexico, Belize, or elsewhere in Central America, and it is a very different story. Anyway, your question is pretty timely, as I just published this blog post a few days ago:

That should give you some ideas.
You have mention there of a brewed chocolate drink. Who makes this? I'd like to try that as well as several of the other things. Thanks for your insight.
Eric:

I think you may be looking for Cabaret Brewed Chocolate.

One interesting side not here is that one of the co-founders of Cabaret (before they made brewed chocolate they were making confections) is now one of the co-founders of Tcho - Timothy Childs.
I watched the video also, but since I didn't have cocoa shells, I used nibs to brew some chocolate tea. I steeped it for 6 minutes, and added just a smidgen of sugar but no milk. (Being a milk chocolate lover, that was a bold move for me!) It had a pure chocolate flavor with little bitterness. I liked it and want to play with different spices, such as cinnamon, or chili powder. Time to explore.
I have been working on a brewed product for the past year and I am just now getting it worked out. What I do is very different from what you mentioned Alan. Hopefully I'll get it all worked out. I just had something called Cocoa Samoa. They cook beans in water for a long time then add stuff like cinnamon and vanilla. It was really good.
If you are really interested in a chocolate drink that is out of the ordinary, try macerating (soaking, infusing) roasted nibs in a really good silver rum. About 1/2 cup in a 750ml bottle, soak for at least three days (to taste), shaking daily. Then strain through cheesecloth. Do not skimp on the rum - it won't turn out right.

A variation on this is to use vodka instead of rum and use the result as the base to make chocolate martinis.
Here are a couple of drink recipes that we enjoy. I hope you like them too.
First recipe
Chocolate Margarita
Chocolate Chipotle Powder, recipe follows
1½ ounces dark chocolate liqueur
1½ ounces chocolate vodka
1½ ounces tequila
1½ coffee flavor liqueur

Chocolate Chipotle Powder*
2 tablespoons Mexican Chocolate ground into powder
1 tablespoon ground chipotle powder (or red chile powder if you prefer)

Mix completely and set aside.

Spread the Chocolate Chipotle Powder out on a large plate. Rim 2 (8-ounce) martini glasses by rolling the edge of each glass on a clean wet sponge, then rolling the edge over the powder. Tap the glass gently to knock off the extra powder. Pour the rest of the ingredients into a cocktail shaker filled with ice and shake vigorously until the outside of the shaker is frosty. Strain immediately into the glasses and serve.

Second recipe:
Chocolate Martini
¾ cup half-and-half or light cream
8 ounces dark chocolate liqueur (1 cup)
2 ounces vodka (1/4 cup)
Ice cubes
2 tablespoons ground Mexican Chocolate
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon

Mix ground Mexican Chocolate and cinnamon. Spread on a plate. Moisten rim of martini glasses with a wet sponge and dip into the chocolate-cinnamon mixture.

In a pitcher, stir together the half-and-half or light cream, chocolate liqueur, and vodka.
Place ice cubes in a martini shaker. Add liqueur mixture; shake. Strain mixture into four to six chilled martini glasses.
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