What is 'raw' chocolate?
There has been a lot of debate in the craft chocolate world recently about the term 'raw' to describe chocolate made from unroasted cacao beans at low temperatures. This stems from the undeniable fact that after the cacao pods have been harvested the cacao beans are extracted and then fermented in wooden crates or 'sweatboxes' for up to a week. The temperature reached during the fermentation process exceeds 43C, reaching as high as 50C. Once this happens the cacao bean is no longer considered 'raw'.
The fermentation process is a crucial step in the development of fine chocolate as it helps remove the tannin's from the bean. Tannin's bring an astringent flavour to the chocolate and needs to be removed.
Unlike mass produced chocolate, our 'raw' chocolate is handcrafted from organic unroasted cacao beans using low temperatures . At Aztec Gold Chocolate our process never exceeds 43°C, whereas conventional chocolate is roasted to temperatures often exceeding 150°C. Our low temperature processing maintains the unique flavours of the beans while preserving their natural goodness.
We want to be a little different and preserve and explore the unique flavours of unroasted cacao beans, while at the same time maintaining all their natural goodness. Aztec Gold has created a selection of exceptional handcrafted, bean-to-bar, organic, single origin, dark chocolate bars for you to enjoy. We have chosen the Criolla, meaning heirloom, cacao bean from Peru to craft our bars. Ethically sourced from a co-op that supports small scale cacao farmers and teaches them organic, sustainable practices.
We do not use refined sugar, artificial flavourings or emulsifiers. We use only natural ingredients and fresh spices to flavour all our bars.
Why do we make raw/unroasted chocolate?
Because we love the gentle fruity flavours of the unroasted cacao bean and are passionate about creating delicious dark chocolate.
Aztec Gold Chocolate is excited to be part of the new chocolate movement of single origin, small batch, bean-to-bar chocolate makers. While we are using only the finest criollo cacao beans from small scale sustainable farmers in Peru, we hope soon to be able to bring you carefully sourced single origin beans from other parts of the world so you can further experience the bold exotic flavours of cacao.