When the sacks of beans arrive at us, they are sorted once more and then roasted. Roasting is a stage that largely affects the taste of the chocolate. Because we are interested in highlighting the character of the cocoa beans, we roast the cocoa lightly and carefully. The roasted cocoa beans are crushed and their thin, paper-like husks are sorted away. The cocoa pieces, also called cocoa nibs , are then coarsely ground into a thick paste. The pasta is then finely ground together with the other ingredients.
To make a 70% dark chocolate, two ingredients are needed – cocoa beans and sugar. When everything is finished grinding, the chocolate is conchased to finalize properties such as taste and fluidity. This can take anywhere from 10 to 70 hours. When the chocolate is ready, it can either be molded into chocolate bars to be enjoyed plain or used to make pralines, for example. In order for the chocolate to keep its shape at room temperature and to have a beautiful, glossy surface, we need to carefully lower and raise the temperature of the melted chocolate before it is used. This step is called tempering.
Photo: Ulrika Andersson @thelittlegreeencastle