It All Starts at the Cacao Tree
Cocoa pods on the cacao tree get picked when they are a burgundy brown colour–this is when they are ripe.
Did You Know? Some Cocoa pods are as big as a rugby ball.
Inside the cocoa pod are between 20-50 seeds–this is what we know as cocoa beans, although they taste pretty sour when first picked and nothing like chocolate.
The cocoa beans then go into a box to ferment. Then they are laid out in large trays to dry out in the sun. Then they are sent off to the factories.
Once the beans arrive at the factory, they are sifted to get rid of bits that aren’t wanted (grit, dirt, etc) and are then roasted at a low temperature to bring out the chocolate flavour. The outer shells are now cracked open to leave the cocoa nibs that are inside.
The cocoa nibs are crushed up and ground into a paste. This paste is called cocoa mass. You could melt the paste at this stage and make a chocolate bar, but it would taste really bitter. Melted cocoa mass is called cocoa liquor.
Cocoa Mass & Cocoa Butter
Now, some of our cocoa mass is kept for later, the rest is pressed by a machine which squeezes out the cocoa butter in it. What’s left behind is a pressed powder cake. This is ground up and becomes cocoa powder.
The cocoa mass we kept is now mixed with the cocoa butter and sugar is added. Sometimes other ingredients are added too, such as vanilla flavour and milk.
The blended chocolate then goes through rollers to improve the texture and make it more smooth.
The final process is called tempering, where chocolate is heated and then cooled. This makes sure the crystal structure in chocolate behaves itself and that chocolate looks nice and shiny when you open the wrapper to your chocolate bar.
Using the text above and what you have learnt in the lesson, explain how chocolate is made. You must use your OWN words. Try to include time words like ‘first’, ‘then’, ‘after that’.