How we make chocolate

In case you don’t know, chocolate comes from the cacao plant. A few years ago we planted some plants that are doing very well and producing some good cacao pods.

Cacao pods on the plant.

Once the pods ripen on the plant they are harvested and the seeds removed. The seeds are covered in a slick film that has a fruit like taste to it. Without removing the film, the seeds then need to sit on the counter, stirring daily for around five days to ferment.

Cacao pods and the seeds inside them.

Once the seeds are done fermenting they then sit drying in the sun for up to a week. After they are dried they can then be vacuum sealed until we are ready to process them.

Drying in the sun.

The next step would be to roast them. We have a roasting basket that goes on the rotisserie on our grill. As they start to roast they will make a popping sound. Once they stop popping then they are done.

Roasting them on the grill.

After roasting there is a thin shell on them that needs to be removed before they go into a food processor to be ground up. You need a good quality food processor as it needs to run for about a half-hour.

The first stage of grinding.

They will first all grind down to a powder and then the natural oils will start to come out. This is when it goes from a powder to a thick fudge and then to a pourable chocolate. At that point, we add some sugar for the desired sweetness.

After the natural oils have been released and the sugar has been added.

It is then ready to melt and put in molds and such or stored in the fridge for later use. We have a few different molds we use for making the chocolate. Things we have done with it are chocolate with coffee beans, dipped frozen bananas, almond joy bars, and a couple other things.

The finished products.

It is a lot of work and a long process, but what it comes down to is that we are growing chocolate and we think that is really cool!




4 thoughts on “How we make chocolate”

  1. Great post! Most Americans have no idea; I certainly did not. Great pics and details of the process. It does appear to be a lot of work. I’m currently experimenting with roasting nuts, both savory and sweet. Thanks for the update! Chris in Phoenix, AZ.

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