Does anyone have information about how washing pre-fermented cocoa beans before drying affects bean flavor?
The only information I have, from a document written by Smilja Lambert of Mars, Inc. about Vietnam cocoa, states that soaking is supposed to reduce acidity, increase brown beans and improve chocolate flavor.
I’m working with a farmer who is trying to improve the flavor of his beans. He currently soaks the pre-fermented beans (approx. 10kg at a time) in water for 15 minutes before gently washing the pulp off with his hands and spreading out to dry. The document recommends 2 hours soaking time (volume not specified), but he’s concerned the long soak time will add too much moisture back into his beans. He’d like to know how soaking/washing improves flavor, so he can quality control his beans more efficiently.
Any information will be helpful.
Hi Teresa, I don't know the answer to your question but would like to refer you to Alexis or Emily at Maya Mountain Cacao in Belize, they are on the ground level and may be able to answer or point you in the right direction.
Excellent, thanks Arcelia, I hear great things about Maya Mountain Cacao.
I found out if beans are too acidic that washing them would help reduce acidity, but to be careful of contaminating them with dirty water.