The History Of Chocolate
History Of Chocolate – How Chocolate Became Such A Popular Flavor
The chocolate is such a world wide super commodity that it deserves some research into its background and history. Well, to start with, the history of chocolate began with the domestic plantation of coco plants by the Olmec Indians way back in 1500 BC. Not that they made a handful of chocolate bars, packed in beautiful cartons for sale in the open market. Their traditional method of consuming this wonder commodity was by drying it first and then making a brew of it, not unlike the way we brew coffee now. This delicacy was meant only for the elite and not for the common man. History, however, took a back seat here when a shipload of coco beans was intercepted by Columbus who had reportedly ordered the cargo destroyed on the presumption that it was nothing but “sheep’s droppings”.
How Europe first got the taste of chocolate
Christopher Columbus, nevertheless, amended his mistake and brought the first consignment of coco beans to Spain after returning from America. But nothing much about coco or chocolate could be heard for quite sometime until some Spanish monks discovered the taste of crushed coco beans in a the form of a hot beverage. Soon Chocolate Houses opened all over Europe that served the beverage to a clientel that was stinking rich. Grinding the roasted coco bean was an expensive labor oriented affair. During the 1700, mechanized coco grinders appeared in the market that led to a formidable drop in the price of ground coco, the mother of all chocolates.
Chocolate’s trip across the Atlantic
During the end of 1700 chocolate was sold in the form of cakes, rolls and sundry chocolate-coated pastries and desserts. These tasty treats were available in Chocolate Houses and in wealthier homes across Europe. The company that initiated the process of making chocolates in America in a big way was named Bakers Chocolate Company. This happened about 10 years before the American Revolutionary War broke out.
Chocolate gains popularity through its own history
No other condiment in recent history had been as popular as the chocolate. Some even thought that it contained medicinal values and one of the reasons for the Baker’s Chocolate Company in America to flourish were its products were believed to be linked with therapeutic properties. In Amsterdam a process known as “Dutching” was invented, in which the coco butter is removed from the chocolate resulting in a smoother texture in the still popular beverage form of the chocolate.
The chocolate candy
It was not until the middle of the 1800’s when chocolate could be produced in the molded form and thus was born the chocolate candy. It was found that if the “Dutched” chocolate was sweetened then added back into the coco butter it made a delicious sweet and moldable treat. And so what we know today as a chocolate bar was born. Candies in both milk and Swiss chocolates followed it. Valentines Day has been a favorite occasion and when Cadbury’s came out with a heart shaped box of chocolates it became a great success. Today we know how important an occasion that was in the history of chocolate.
Chocolate and the modern day America
Ever since the day the chocolate set its foot on American soil, people fell for it, making thousands of variations where chocolate is often the main theme. The first published recipe for the beloved Brownies appeared in the Sears Roebuck Catalogue during the end of the 19th century. The renowned Hershey Company has minted millions by selling chocolates only and so has the Nestlé Company. Enthusiasm soared so high that a Belgian confectioner opened Godiva Chocolate Company in the year 1926 and may God bless them all, they are all still doing fine.