Regardless of our age, we all love chocolate. It is the key ingredient for various food items like candy bars, milkshakes, cookies and many more. Despite its huge popularity, most of us are oblivious of the procedure of making these treats. The basic procedure of harvesting coca, refining it to cocoa and transportation to the candy and chocolate plant is followed by several other mechanised processes.
The following are the procedure of chocolate making:
1. Harvesting Cocoa and Cocoa processing
It starts with harvesting the coca from the evergreen cocoa tree. It is harvested manually and is a labour intensive work.
Step 1: plucking and opening the coca pods- the cocoa beans sprout of the tree and are normally a size of a football.
Step 2: fermenting the seeds- they are placed in large, heated and shallow trays usually covered with banana leaves. The beans turn brown during this process.
Step 3: drying the cocoa seeds- it takes around a week to dry when the seeds become half of their actual weight.
2. Manufacturing processes at the candy and chocolate plant
The fermented and dried cocoa beans are refined to a roasted nib by roasting and winnowing. Then they are heated into chocolate liquor. Lastly sugar and milk are added to produce the flavour.
Step 1: roasting and winnowing- they are firstly roasted and then broken into smaller pieces which are called cocoa nibs. They straining and passing through the series of sieves is known as winnowing.
Step 2: grinding the nibs- this process produces the cocoa liquor. It is the also known as the cocoa mass.
Step 3: blending cocoa liquor and moulding chocolate- the cocoa mass or powder is then blended with butter and liquor of various kinds at varying proportions to produce the different kinds of chocolates.
Milk chocolates, white chocolates and plain dark chocolates are the basic flavours available. They are further enhanced by adding dry fruits and various other flavours. The candy and chocolate plants then package and deliver these delicacies to the distributors to reach the stores to be sold to the customers.