Sunday, April 28, 2013

Making Chocolate!

One of my favorite things to do in Antigua is to visit the Choco Museo (yes, a Chocolate Museum)!  My first visit was with my friend Brian who was in town for a few days, but I didn't have my camera that time.  So, my next time taking the tour and making chocolate, I had to document it.  The cool thing is that there are three locations of the Choco Museo and one other one is in Cusco, which I have also visited.  The "tour" in Antigua is far superior, because you get to make your own chocolate at the end!  Just another amazing part of living in Guatemala - delicious coffee and chocolate!  Now if someone just made good beer, I'd be set for life!

Alex (who happens to study English at my school) led the tour both times I took it.  The two-hour tour starts with a history of cocoa bean growing and how chocolate has evolved over time.

We happened to do this tour with a bunch of kids - perfect for all of us "adult kids"

The way the Mayans ground the cocoa beans

Making a paste to then make chocolate out of - at this stage it smells amazing but is very, very bitter

One of my favorite signs in the museum - talking about how the Spaniards invented hot chocolate as we know it today

The chocolate storage bins behind the counter where you make chocolate - yum!!!

Now the fun begins - the cocoa beans ready to make chocolate!

First step - roasting the beans

Once roasted - you can peel them and then grind them to make chocolate out of the paste

Dani and Sam are excellent cocoa bean peelers

Amy's ready to grind the beans like the Mayans did

Ground cocoa beans - just like the Mayans first did it with a mortar and pestle - its tough work!

Alex making hot chocolate like the Mayans made it - they even added blood!  But instead, he added some red food coloring ;)

Mayan hot chocolate - not very sweet, but tasty!

Learning how machines helped streamline (and simplify) the chocolate making process - everyone had a go at grinding the beans.

My favorite - hot chocolate like European royalty: cocoa, sugar, milk, cinnamon, cardamom, and black pepper!

After learning all about the changes in chocolate production, each person was given a bowl of dark chocolate and forms and allowed to create their own chocolates.  This is the best part!

Alex ends with a chocolate facial!  Cocoa butter is good for the skin afterall!

Of course after Alex did it, the kids did too.  What fun we had!

1 comment:

  1. Mmmm. Chocolate. One of my favorite subjects...

    Thanks! Fun pictures.