The Two Categories of Chocolate
Chocolate can always be divided into two very different categories. The difference is the fat type or oil that was used to produce the product. Real chocolate also has three categories of its own. Also real chocolate must be tempered with. Compound chocolate is ordinary chocolate.
Real chocolate is made of cocoa butter. Real chocolate needs to go through a special melting process called tempering. Tempering reforms the chocolate’s crystals of cocoa butter. Then when it has cooled it will have the right amount of shine, great taste, and snap. Tempering also prevents bloom. When chocolate blooms it is when the cocoa butter removes itself from the cocoa solid. The cocoa butter comes to the surface, which makes the chocolate’s color whitish and grayish. Real chocolate also has categories. The categories are based on the quality of the end product that depends on the cocoa beans. The categories are regular couverture, and ultra-couverture.
Regular chocolate is usually in chocolate chip form, and it is sweetened with sugar. It is made of ordinary cocoa beans and is very low in cocoa butter use. It has a lot of thickness when melted. It is used for baking and not molding because it holds it shape. For regular chocolate tempering is not required. Couverture chocolate is the best kind of chocolate for professional purposes. It is made of the finest cocoa beans and lots of cocoa butter. This chocolate’s texture is very smooth when melted. For this chocolate to have an elegant and glossy finish it must be tempered then cooled. Ultra-couverture is the same quality as couverture, although it utilizes more cocoa butter than couverture. This chocolate is the ideal chocolate for enrobing and dipping. When it is cooled after it has been tempered it has the same glossy finish as the couverture but this one is thin.
Compound chocolate is made of vegetable oil rather than cocoa butter. It does not have to be tempered. Many people like compound chocolate because it is cheap and easy to work with.
Other Elements of Chocolate
A chocolate’s taste also depends on other elements. It is affected by the type of cocoa powder you use. There are regular, Dutch-processed, and alkalized cocoa powder. There is a type of chocolate that is called Gianduja chocolate and it is European. It contains a nut paste.
The most popular ones are the ones that contain a hazelnut paste. For example, one that contains hazelnut is Nutella. Also almond is popular. Gianduja chocolate is either milk or dark.
Chocolate also contains chocolate liquor, ground chocolate, chocolate extract, and cocoa butter. Chocolate liquor is the base of all chocolates. Ground chocolate is not the same as cocoa powder. A great way to add the flavor of chocolate is by using chocolate extract. Cocoa butter is the fat from chocolate liquor.
Chocolate liquor is the base of all chocolates. Chocolate liquor is ground cacao nibs that become a liquid paste that is smooth. It contains no additives. Chocolate is non-alcoholic. It is also 53% cocoa butter (fat).
Ground chocolate is not the same as cocoa powder, there is a distinction. It is the same as regular chocolate, but ground. Cocoa powder is not chocolate yet, ground chocolate is. It is often used in drinks. It does not replace cocoa powder in a recipe.
Chocolate extract is also important. It is a great way to add the flavor of chocolate to your cooking. It does not add fat, so it is healthy. The flavor of it often tends to be a little strong. Vanilla extract and chocolate extract are made using the same process. It is made by soaking cacao beans in alcohol.