The Chocolate Life

Discover Chocolate and Live La Vida Cocoa!

February 2010 Blog Posts (14)

The Making of Chocolate - Cacao beans to???

Two days ago, I attempted to make chocolate from home grown beans.

I live in the tropics - Trinidad - where some of the world's best cocoa beans allegedly come from and have quite a bit of cacao trees on the land left from a time that Cadbury owned the entire area. My husband and I decided that it was time to rehabilitate the existing trees and replant new ones and we ended up with quite a bit of cocoa pods. the seeds were picked, fermented and sun-dried in our good, HOT and dry weather… Continue

Added by Camille Harripersad on February 26, 2010 at 11:30am — 5 Comments

Ecuadorian Cacao Analysis Project. CyD, INIAP

I am working on a project for Conservacion y Desarollo (CyD) here in Ecuador. The project is related to physical, chemical and organoleptic analysis of Ecuadorian cacao. There are 11 growers associations from various regions of Ecuador participating in the project. INIAP (instituto nacional de investigaciones agro-pecuarios) is also involved in the project and we are using their cacao laboratory in Quevedo. INIAP is akin to the dept. of agriculture.

My first assignment was to…


Added by Eric G on February 17, 2010 at 3:00pm — 1 Comment

Getting away this weekend to Europe...sort of

I made impish chocolate cupcakes with a black current balsalmic ganache and since, I’ve kind of had it with the snow and decided to get away for the weekend…sort of…I’m going to be at TheStockton Market. Featured on…


Added by Gretchen Tartakoff on February 13, 2010 at 6:00am — No Comments

The Most Unusual Cacao Pod I Have Ever Seen

At The Chocolate Experience in Mexico City I was presented what has to be the most unusual cacao pod I have ever seen. This pod was on the stand of CACEP, a co-operative in the Tabasco area of Chiapas and was described to me as "cacao prehispanico." Or, a type of cacao pod that existed before the Spanish arrived in Mesoamerica. The person who showed this to me is the manager of… Continue

Added by Clay Gordon on February 12, 2010 at 9:30am — 2 Comments

Describing Flavors

So, I was reading a little about how to describe flavors of chocolate. It makes a lot of sense. I think I could do pretty well with chocolate if I tried. (Well, for a beginner, anyway.)

But it got me to thinking about flavors that I have trouble describing. They're not usually in chocolate, but I thought maybe you might know something about it. No one ever knows what I'm talking about and they deny these flavors exist, but I'll give it a shot anyway.…


Added by Dee on February 10, 2010 at 11:00pm — 2 Comments

Speaking of Blizzards...

All this snow and these blizzards have me wondering...

What's the best chocolate ice cream?

One of my favorites (though not too fancy) is Bryers Vanilla Fudge Swirl. But I haven't been able to find it lately.

How about the best hot chocolate?

Added by Dee on February 9, 2010 at 4:21pm — 5 Comments

Eco Friendly Valentine's Day Gifts - Change the World With Your Change!

You can make a difference with your pocket book. I recommend choosing Valentine's Day gifts that are made responsibly and sustainably. Of course I am going to offer up our delicious Rich Rainforest Dark Gourmet Fudge from Earth's Sweet Pleasures, but I would also like to add two gift companies that carry all natural, organic and fair-trade products: It's Only Natural Gifts and… Continue

Added by Reonne (aka Choco Mama) on February 8, 2010 at 5:00pm — 2 Comments

Transparency and Original Beans

I am wondering if any of you can shed some light on this new company:

I recently purchased a few bars to taste and consider using at chocolate tastings that we host and I am unable to determine basic things about the bars, like where they are made?! Very surprisingly this information is nowhere to be found on their packaging.

I am hoping some of you might be able to shed some light on this… Continue

Added by Sunita de Tourreil on February 8, 2010 at 2:29am — 15 Comments

My Vancouver chocolate tour

I was visiting families and friends this past holiday season and I had the chance to check out several chocolate shops in town. The chocolate scene in Vancouver is definitely booming. New stores and more convenient branch locations for some famous names are blooming to the excitement of the coming Winter Olympics/ Valentine’s Day combo. Although I wouldn’t advise anyone to go for a Vancouver chocolate tour during the Games unless that’s what they are also there for, the huge infrastructure… Continue

Added by Gary Shieh on February 6, 2010 at 3:30pm — 1 Comment

Brownies are my Valentine!

I love brownies, but they must be perfect! I do not like cake-like brownies (does anyone?). The gooier the better! In order to get perfect brownies, you need to do 2 things. Stop stirring when *most* of the dry ingredients are mixed in (using a spoon, never a beater). And undercook them. Don't take them out when they're absolutely still uncooked (when wet batter comes off on your fork or toothpick). But take them out when some sticky crumbs come off on the fork. If the fork…


Added by Dee on February 5, 2010 at 4:51pm — 3 Comments


Desmond says: There has been a demand for luxury chocolates for centuries, "From the foamy drink of the Aztecs to the rich confections of Europe, chocolate has long been celebrated as an indulgence fit for Kings, Desmond says ;

"We feel that other than celebrating the wondrous cocoa plant, International Chocolate Day brings the opportunity to celebrate everything chocolaty," he says. "A little bit of decadence never hurt anyone, so we are encouraging people to celebrate this day by joining… Continue

Added by Des Mullahy on February 4, 2010 at 6:00pm — No Comments

Foot Print Lollipop mold

I need a foot print lollipop mold about 2" to 3" long ASAP.


Added by Stan Phillips on February 4, 2010 at 3:20pm — 1 Comment

geodesic mold

Does anyone have the geodesic chocolate mold from jbprince? Does anyone know the candy weight of it. I know other websites like has them but with less cavities. I tried contacting their customer service 4 TIMES but no responces yet.

Added by julia arcuri-mullan on February 3, 2010 at 3:30pm — 1 Comment

Next show in San Francisco?

This is the dumbest question on this blog but I can't find the answer anywhere here.

Date of next large trade(?) show in San Francisco?

Added by Stan Phillips on February 3, 2010 at 2:36am — 1 Comment

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