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Monarch Update
Monarch Update

Raw chocolate

While looking at an independent health food store I came across a product called Raw Chocolate (it was also no added sugar and sweetened with Xyitol).  I wondered what made chocolate raw.   Is it just part of the pattern of food buzz phrases like "clean eating" or "Paleo diet"?  I have seen raw cacao beans and they don't look very enticing! 

It seems there is no formal definition.  Cacao beans have to be roasted before they are made into chocolate but most raw chocolate producers try to reduce the temperature used to below 42C.  Normally cocoa beans are roasted at 130C to develop the aromatic flavours.  So Raw Chocolate isn't strictly speaking "raw" at all. 

Many makers of Raw Chocolate are "Bean to Bar" producers.  This means that they make the chocolate from the cocoa bean themselves, as opposed to those chocolate makers that buy in bulk chocolate and process it to make bars and other chocolate Delicacies. 

The reason given for limiting the heat is that heat can destroy the natural nutrients in food.  An example of this is Vitamin C that is destroyed during a  cooking process.  Also heat denatures (changes the properties) of the enzymes in food and the Raw food movement believes this affects the nutritional value of the food.

 Raw chocolate is unlikely to be sweetened with Refined sugar but instead will use natural alternatives such as coconut or palm sugar.   

Most raw chocolate is Vegan and be made to the highest ethical standards in terms of fair trade and sustainability.

I think the most important thing about chocolate is the taste.  If you fancy trying some raw chocolate, this site does have some that is no added sugar.



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