Archive for the ‘Health’ Category

The DNA of chocolate has been unlocked

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The Food Network has been brilliant at showcasing the most incredible James Beard award winners for excellence. However, their latest attempt at showcasing desserts on their show “Top Chef Just Desserts” , left me a bit wary. Understanding the complexities of developing recipes on the fly for desserts, can be daunting.

For example, it has taken us almost two years to perfect our entremets, and we’ve been developing and perfecting our Spring desserts for over 6 months. Some are more difficult to develop than others, but my point is that creating dessert recipes is a fine science. It’s not just about matching flavor profiles, but understand the science behind the ingredients.

I saw this blog article and had the share the latest science behind chocolate by Jonathan Bender, Thu., Dec. 30 2010 @ 8:30AM Categories: News


Great chocolatiers have always been a bit like mad scientists, and now they might just have the science to begin creating the perfect chocolate bar.

Fast Company reports that a team of French scientists has unlocked the genetic code of chocolate. And not just any chocolate, but the DNA of Theobroma cacao, a species of cacao used primarily to make gourmet dark chocolate.

By sequencing the genome of a cacao tree, the scientists should be able to create bio-engineered fine cocoa that is resistant to disease. The price of cocoa would then theoretically go down. And since cocoa is one of the main ingredients used to make chocolate, we’d be looking at cheaper fine chocolate bars. That’s the reason this study was underwritten by Hershey’s Corp. and Valrhona.

An interesting question is whether there would be a differentiation between genetically engineered cocoa and naturally occurring cocoa. The chocolate market is like the coffee market, with plenty of fair-trade and small-batch companies attempting to provide a tree to chocolate store approach.

But in a world where pest-resistant and frost-resistant crops are commonly accepted, is disease-resistent cacao really such a foreign concept? Do you care if your chocolate bar is genetically engineered if it tastes exactly the same?

[Image via Flickr: EverJean]

Can Healthy Dark Chocolate Improve Your Mood?

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Saw this article in Health and Fitness and thought I needed to share.

08.10.2010 | Author: Natasha Ochs | Posted in Health-and-Fitness

You may want to start looking at the GOOD side effects of a natural mood enhancer, instead of the long list of BAD side effects of a ” happy pill” Chocolate could be you answer, however not all chocolates are created equal. Xocai Healthy Chocolate Dark Chocolate has several components in it that promote positive mood changes in the brain.

Antioxidants that are plant based are called Flavanols, which are found cacao. Free radicals in your body are the leading cause to ageing, sleep deprivation, inflammation and fatigue. Science studies are showing that our modern day diets are far from having enough antioxidants in it, and that cacao has the highest amount of antioxidants that we need to help battle some of these common problems. The flavanols in the healthy chocolate boosts blood flow to certain areas of the brain in about 2-3 hours after consuming it, which not only help your body resist cell damage but also optimize performance in certain tasks due to the increased alertness by digesting more of these flavanols.