Mexico: The History of Chocolate
At la Soledad y Chocolat, I persuaded factory workers to spill the beans on how traditional Oaxacan chocolate is made. The state of Oaxaca is one of the country’s largest producers of chocolate and the people in this state consume more chocolate than anywhere else in Mexico.
In Oaxaca, cacao beans are typically ground with sugar and spices. At the shop, I was handed a bowl of roasted beans, almonds, and cinnamon. Machines with sharp, rotating blades are used to grind the chocolate. It took only 10 minutes to transform these ingredients into a chocolate paste that is traditionally used in drinks and mole sauce.
I’m surprised that this simple process results in such sophisticated tasting chocolate – rich, earthy, and with a hint of spice.