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Has anyone made chocolate from raw, frozen cacao beans. My situation is that I never have enough cacao pods on my 10 trees to make a decent batch of chocloate. I am now freezing and accumulating the beans until I have about 400 beans for fermentation and processing. Any idea if this will work?

Bob

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interesting idea, i'd love to hear if anyone has leads on this
Samantha,

Thanks for your informative and encouraging reply. I'll be sure to let you know the result of my experiment with frozen beans.

Bob
You may need more than 400 beans for fermentation. On the plantation, cocoa beans are fermented in wooden boxes that are approximately one meter square. During fermentation, the temperatures will climb to approximately 120 degrees F. where the microbes really thrive. With small amounts of beans, it is hard to get enough beans fermenting to get the temperature up.

You'll probably need to build a temperature controlled environment so that it is easier for the temperatures to climb to where they need to be.

Hope this helps,

-Art
Art,

I use a temperature controlled incubator for the fermentation and this is how I get away with small batches of beans. I got the decimal pint wrong in the posting. Actually, I normally use 1600 beans collected from 40 pods. This is why I am trying freezing to accumulate enough beans.

Bob
Samantha,

I have fermented batches as small as 40 beans from a single pod and did it in the pod with added bread yeast. The problem is that the temperature does not rise enough owing to the low mass unless one uses an incubator oven for the small batches. This is especially true at night. Thanks for the tip on optimum temperature for fermentation bacteria. Are both the yeast and the acetobacter fermentations aerobic?

Bob

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