Chocolate Factory Lesson No.1 – Don’t eat a raw cacoa bean!

As another excursion effort, we went to see how chocolate was made. Gaz being the good boyfriend he is, was happy to whisk me up a mountain to see my favourite thing in life, I’m sure there was an ulterior motive there somewhere. So we cracked opened a cacao pod fresh off the tree (with a machete of course) and had a little taste. The white goo on the inside it nice and sweet but biting into the raw bean was so sour and bitty it was pretty awful and I also discovered it’s bright purple – not that I spat it out or anything!

The chocolate factory is run by a family who still practice ancient Indian methods for cooking, medicine and other general tasks, they swear by the cocoa bean for energy. With the men still working in the fields all day this is their source of … well, everything. Running through the entire process of roasting, sweating, fermenting we finally got to taste it, being wary of how sour chocolate can be before Cadbury’s gets their hand on it, I was pleasantly surprised with how well they flavoured it, as we tasted samples with mint, vanilla, coffee, toffee, sugar, milk, cinnamon, etc etc. We were even shown how they use the rest of the fruit to make coco butter, so eat your heart out Body Shop, I’ve got your secret recipe.

I won’t be bulk buying chocolate produced like this anytime soon but it’s always good to make you realise how much work can go into something you take for granted. That was until I had to go without Cadbury’s for six months of course!

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