Make Your Own Chocolate Bar From Scratch
Making raw chocolate bars is a relatively simple process, it just requires a bit of melting and stirring. I have made a few versions of this type of chocolate, but I’d never thought about trying to make my own “real chocolate” – until now.
Browsing through a library copy of the very interesting Groundnut Cookbook recently, I came across a recipe for a Dark Chocolate Bar: cue double take, *ding*, really? Wow! I’d kind of assumed one needed all sorts of complicated equipment to make bean to bar chocolate at home, but it seems not. This I just had to try.
Of course I went my own way as usual. The method used in the book required a lot of “conching” by hand in a pestle and mortar. I wanted to see if my trusty Optimum 9200A Next Generation blender was up to the job. Turned out it was. Getting it to grind and meld the chocolate required a bit of experimentation. This super fast blender can get hot very quickly and I didn’t want to burn the chocolate. The main difficulty I experienced was only having fifty grams of cocoa nibs in the house. This meant adapting the quantities given in the recipe and more importantly, it wasn’t quite enough for the blades to reach properly; I had to do several quick bursts of blending, followed by scraping out the chocolate mixture from the bottom. A hundred grams or more would have worked much better. It also wasn’t enough to fill my chocolate mould, so I ended up with a three quarters bars rather than a full one.
Okay, the end result wasn’t the most sophisticated chocolate I’ve ever eaten, the texture was in fact quite grainy, but hey, I’d made my very own chocolate bar from scratch. I couldn’t resist doing a few jigs around the house; I was, just a little bit excited. It had a nice shine to it, a really good snap and it tasted really rather nice. It was so good in fact, I had a hard time not demolishing the whole thing immediately. I did manage to save some for CT’s return later in the day, however; he gave it the thumbs up, broadly hinting I should devote myself to this latest pastime.
The fabulous golden ticket chocolate mould came from the lovely Celia over at Fig Jam and Lime Cordial a few years ago and it’s my absolute favourite. The Groundnut Cookbook by Duval Timothy, Jacob Fodio Todd and Folayemi Brown is full of intriguing recipes from all over Africa. To find out more on the wonders of the Optimum 9200A Next Generation, do read my original review.
- 50g cocoa nibs
- 15g demerara sugar
- pinch Himalayan pink rock salt (or salt of choice)
- 10g cocoa butter
- Place the cocoa nibs, sugar and salt in a powerful blender (I used my Froothie Optimum 9200A Next Generation) and pulse until a fine powder has formed.
- Add the cocoa butter and blend on medium for 30 second bursts, being careful to not overheat the chocolate, which can get easily burnt. You may need to scrape the mixture up from the bottom in between bursts.
- Keep going until the mixture has formed a smooth and shiny paste. Ideally you want a pourable liquid, but I didn't get that.
- Scrape out (or pour) into a chocolate mould, or suitable sized tin. Press with a back of a spoon to ensure an even layer.
- Leave for an hour or so in a cool place to set. Unmould and dance a little jib of joy.
- Makes one 75g bar.
- Would suggest doubling the quantities would make the process easier.
- You may want to add a little more sugar if you like your chocolate sweet.
I use the Optimum 9200A for smoothies, spreads, sauces and even chocolate making. All links to the blender are affiliate ones. If you buy one through one of the links, it will not cost you any more, but I will get a small commission. This is not a paid post and as always, all opinions are my own.