RAW chocolate is typically defined by the heat at which cocoa beans are roasted and in some cases the beans are un roasted.
RAW chocolate cocao beans can be roasted up to a temperature of 42 degrees, the cocao beans are not chemically treated or processed in anyway.
RAW chocolate is made by cold-pressing the gently roasted or un roasted cacao beans. The process maintains the living enzymes in the cocoa and removes the fat (cacao butter).
RAW cocoa beans are kept as close to their purest form as possible, the final bar of chocolate will contain only four ingredients.
Cacao powder, Cacao butter, palm sugar or other unrefined sugar and any other added ingredients; such as raw fruit, seeds or nuts.
Due to the lack of processing and PURE ingredients, it is believed RAW chocolate contains more natural nutrients and antioxidants.
Many large commercial chocolate makers will roast cocoa beans anywhere between 120 – 140 degrees AND the cocoa beans would have gone through a chemical treatment.
The chemical treatment is carried out prior to roasting and is referred to as ‘alkalisation’ or ‘dutching’.
The ‘dutching’ process is believed to improve the colour and flavour of the cocoa bean and is widely used in mass produced chocolate.
Dutching is not a process to be frowned upon, it can open the cocao beans to a deeper depth of flavour offering a smoother and tastier chocolate bar.
Taste Benefits of RAW chocolate
I have had the pleasure of reviewing a range of delicious RAW chocolates and they certainly offer amazing taste, quality and uniqueness the larger chocolate makers cannot replicate.
PS If you had not noticed I have a need to write RAW chocolate with capital letters, it just feels right!!