Best Chocolate to Eat with Coffee: A Classic Pairing
When God created mornings, he felt pity for people and decided to alleviate their struggles and gave them coffee. Coffee is the best thing that could ever happen to humans. Everyone loves coffee; some people prefer to drink it just like that, some with sweets, especially chocolate. So, what is the best chocolate to eat with coffee?
You can’t really go wrong with combining chocolate with coffee. Our ideal pairings are espresso and dark chocolate and black coffee with milk chocolate. These two pairings balance the sweetness of the chocolate with the bitterness of the coffee.
There are thousands of other flavors of coffee and chocolate that are worth mentioning. Coffee enhances the chocolate flavors, making it a perfect addition to every recipe where you want the taste of chocolate to shine. Coffee and chocolate each have distinct flavors, but they can produce delicious combos when combined.
So let’s dive deep and see what’s the best chocolate to eat with coffee.
What is Coffee?
Let’s start with learning what coffee is before diving into the best chocolate to eat with coffee. The answer is not as simple as you may think. The drink, coffee, is the product of brewing coffee beans that are roasted and ground. Coffee beans are the fruit pits of the coffee tree. The coffee tree (Coffea) is an evergreen, a small tree, or a shrub in the tropical climate zone. The beans are not really beans, but pits taken out of the coffee cherries.
Coffee is a natural stimulant that causes a mild tolerance and has many health benefits associated with it. However, many health issues may result from the abuse of coffee.
This beverage is one of the most common globally produced drinks and makes up a large proportion of many countries’ exports.
Caffeine is a coffee derivative, and in the pharmaceutical industry, it is used very often.
A Brief History of Coffee
Like any great discovery on earth, coffee is also the subject of many legends. Let’s see some of them.
The Ethiopian Legend
The Ethiopian highlands gave birth to coffee. The legend says that, after consuming berries from a specific tree, 9th-century goat herder Kaldi realized how “spirited” his goats were, so he ran to the nearby monastery to let the people there know. A monk made a brew from the berries and was able to stay up praying much longer.
The Arabian Peninsula
The news of this new brew gradually spread to Egypt and the Arabian peninsula, where coffee migrated east and west and finally landed in Southeast Asia and the Americas. And ever since, it’s been famous.
By the 15th century, coffee was grown in Arabia’s Yemen region, and it was recognized in Persia, Egypt, Syria, and Turkey by the 16th century. People enjoyed coffee in homes and in the many “qahveh khaneh” or public coffee houses that began to appear in the Near East towns. The popularity of coffee houses was unequaled, and for all sorts of social activity, people frequented them.
The patrons not only drank coffee and engaged in conversation but also listened to music, watched musicians, played chess, and kept the news up to date.
Arrival to Europe
Tales of an unusual dark black drink were brought back by European travelers to the Middle East. Coffee then came to Europe in the 17th century and was becoming popular across the continent.
Some people reacted with suspicion or fear to this new beverage, calling it the “bitter invention of Satan.” When coffee came to Venice in 1615, the local clergy condemned it. The controversy was so considerable that they asked Pope Clement VIII to intervene. Before making a decision, he decided to taste the beverage for himself, and the drink was so gratifying that he gave it papal approval.
Despite much controversy, coffee houses in many European countries’ significant cities quickly became social activity centers and communication centers. “Penny universities” emerged in England, called so because one could buy a cup of coffee and engage in stimulating conversation for the price of a penny.
Coffee began to replace beer and wine as the ordinary breakfast drink of the time. People who drank coffee instead of alcohol started the day alert and energized, and the quality of their work was greatly improved, not surprisingly.
We know that London had over 300 coffee houses by the mid-17th century, many of which attracted like-minded patrons, including traders, shippers, brokers, and artists.
From these specialized coffee houses, many businesses grew. For instance, at Edward Lloyd’s Coffee House, Lloyd’s of London came into being.
Arrival in the Americas
In 1714, Amsterdam’s mayor presented King Louis XIV of France with a young coffee plant’s gift. In the Royal Botanical Garden in Paris, the King ordered it to be planted. Then, Gabriel de Clieu, a young naval officer, got a seedling from the King’s plant. He managed to transport it safely.
Once planted, not only did the seedlings thrive, but they are credited with spreading almost 18 million coffee trees during the next 50 years on the island of Martinique. This seedling was the parent of all coffee trees throughout the Caribbean, South and Central America is even more incredible.
Francisco de Mello Palheta, sent by the emperor to French Guiana to get coffee seedlings, owes his existence to the famed Brazilian coffee. The French were unwilling to share, but the wife of the French Governor, captivated by his good looks, gave him a large bouquet before he left. Farmers buried enough coffee seeds inside to start what is now a billion-dollar industry.
What is Chocolate?
Chocolate begins with cacao beans that are fermented, dried, roasted, and ground up. It is then melted into “chocolate liquor,” which is broken down into two parts.
Non-fat cocoa solids, which are the foundation for our chocolate bars, along with sugar, maybe some milk, and probably some soy lecithin to keep it all together, and fatty cocoa butter, which may also find its way into your chocolate bar (and your chapstick).
How is Chocolate Made?
Chocolate is made of cocoa seeds. Farmers collect cocoa seeds with their hands because otherwise, they may be damaged. When they are mature, workers cut the orange pods and open them with a machete.
The seeds are placed, stacked, and covered with banana leaves in large fermentation trays and left for two to seven days. The chocolate taste and aroma are created by fermentation. It also kills the seed’s embryo, preventing unnecessary germination and allowing the seeds to fall away from the white pulp.
Next, chocolate makers take the beans to the chocolate factory to clean them and remove debris.The beans are roasted in big, rotating ovens. The roasting draws flavor out of their hulls and cans the beans. Then they place roasted beans in a winnowing machine that breaks the beans and removes the hulls. The remaining portion of the bean is called the nib. Then, the beaks turn into chocolate.
Beneath a series of rollers, the nibs are ground down. A thick paste called chocolate liquor results in this process. Alcohol is not present in this chocolate liquor. It is the primary source of chocolate for unsweetened baking.
The type of chocolate being produced is determined at this stage. Ingredients separate fine chocolate from the average quality, according to the FCIA. Only cacao liquor, cacao butter (optional), sugar, lecithin, vanilla (optional), and possibly milk fats and solids are found in ‘Fine chocolate,’ as designated by the FCIA. It is possible to add additional flavors or ingredients like nuts later.
Types of Chocolate
Three main kinds of chocolate are available: white chocolate, milk chocolate, and dark chocolate. Let’s see what makes them different.
The second most popular type of chocolate is dark chocolate, with its unique deep brown color. It is sometimes referred to as black or semi-sweet and is significantly less sweet than milk chocolate. Recently chocolate makers started to add some sugar to dark chocolate because doctors began to state health benefits.
Dark chocolate is relatively straightforward in composition. Typically, chocolate liquor and sugar are the two ingredients. Small quantities of vanilla and soy lecithin (an emulsifier) are sometimes added. FDA definitions state that dark chocolate must contain at least 15 percent chocolate liquor but typically includes close to about 50 percent.
The majority of high-quality dark chocolate does not have added milk and can be a vegan-friendly bar of great chocolate. The lack of milk and less sugar gives a firmer feel to dark chocolate than milk or white varieties. That’s why, when cut in half, a well-tempered slice of dark chocolate should have a good snap.
Milk chocolate is a classic that has been known and enjoyed by all since childhood. It is widely known as the most common form of chocolate, with its light brown color, creamy texture, and sweet taste. It is formed by mixing sugar with chocolate liquor (cocoa solids and cocoa butter) and milk.
To boost its smoothness, often an emulsifier is applied, such as soy lecithin. Milk chocolate should have at least 10 percent chocolate liquor and 12 percent milk, depending on the FDA description.
Milk chocolate also has a soft and chocolatey flavor profile, with cooked milk and caramelized sugar and a vanilla aftertaste.
It is considered a bar of excellent middle-of-the-road chocolate. It is characteristically sweeter with a milder texture than dark chocolate but not quite as sweet and smooth as white chocolate. Milk chocolate has a shelf-life of approximately 16 months when correctly stored.
Milk chocolate is a perfect alternative when you want a chocolate treat or gift everyone will enjoy. If you want a milder chocolate flavor, we recommend that you try it in recipes like chocolate waffles.
Most people wonder, “Is it white chocolate? Is it chocolate?” The response is yes since there are cacao bean ingredients in it. Cocoa butter is costly because the cosmetics industry is in high demand for its use in lotions and other beauty products.
Therefore, companies also produce a compound in place of cocoa butter that replaces other vegetable fats. These white chocolate-like alternatives can not be legally referred to as white chocolate because they also do not fulfill the 20% cocoa butter requirement.
As white chocolate has a cream or ivory color, it is easy to recognize. These bars contain sugar, cocoa butter, milk, vanilla, and lecithin is made from (an emulsifier that helps the ingredients blend). The ingredients give their sweet vanilla aroma to white chocolate.
Along with striking notes of sweetened condensed milk and vanilla, white chocolate often has a primarily sweet flavor profile․ The cocoa butter base and high sugar milk ingredients help a good quality white chocolate have a thick, smooth, and creamy texture.
These bars are unique since no cocoa solids are present in it. What gives chocolate its dark brown color and the chocolate flavor are the cocoa solids we all know and love. According to the FDA definition, it must contain at least 20 percent cocoa butter and 14 percent milk, and not more than 55 percent sugar, for anything to be called white chocolate.
Coffee and Chocolate
Keep those gorgeous pairs in mind next time you have a coffee break!
Try Full City Espresso with night-dark chocolate from Middle Fork Roaster. With spices such as cinnamon and nutmeg or caramel chocolates, his smooth, rich roast also works well with chocolates.
Lifeboost Dark Roast Coffee goes well with dark chocolate but with some additions alongside. Some berries and nuts in the chocolate would do the best taste explosion in your mouth.
This combo is for sweet-tooths and the ones who don’t skip the dairy. It is all milk and sweet to make your coffee break time sweeter than ever. Try cappuccino with pure milk chocolate. This is a great choice for the best chocolate to eat with coffee.
Coffee is heavenly dark water that only does good (if you drink correctly), and chocolate makes it even better. We hope this article on the best chocolate to eat with coffee was a good guide for you.
Stay caffeinated, friends!