The Learning Chef is proud to bring you the February 2021 Contest “Chocolate”.
The aromatic combination of the roasted and ground cacao seeds is made in the form of a liquid, paste or block. Chocolate has built empires, tracing back to its revered Mesoamerican origins, chocolate has become a staple commodity to the global diet. Make chocolate a star and take home a Learning Chef’s Winner’s Pack!
Chocolate has been prepared as a drink for nearly all of its history. Cacao, pronounced by the Olmecs as “kakawa” dates to 1000 BC or earlier. One vessel found at an Olmec archaeological site dates chocolate’s preparation by pre-Olmec peoples as early as 1750 BC. Mayans were drinking chocolate around 400 AD. Mayan hieroglyphs stated chocolate was used for ceremonial purposes, in addition to everyday life. The Maya grew cacao trees in their backyards and used the cacao seeds the trees produced to make a frothy, bitter drink. By the 15th century, the Aztecs gained control of a large part of Mesoamerica and adopted cacao into their culture. The Aztecs even used cocoa beans as currency. After the Spanish conquest of the Aztecs, chocolate was imported to Europe and became a favorite drink of the royal court.
The seeds of the cacao tree have an intense bitter taste and must be fermented to develop their signature flavor. After fermentation, the beans are dried, cleaned, and roasted. The shell is removed to produce cacao nibs, which are then ground to cocoa mass, unadulterated chocolate in rough form. Once the cocoa mass is liquefied by heating, it is called chocolate liquor. The liquor may also be cooled and processed into its two components: cocoa solids and cocoa butter.
Much of the chocolate consumed today is in the form of sweet chocolate, a combination of cocoa solids, cocoa butter or added vegetable oils, and sugar. Milk chocolate is sweet chocolate that additionally contains milk powder or condensed milk. White chocolate contains cocoa butter, sugar, and milk, but no cocoa solids.
Although cocoa originated in the Americas, West African countries, particularly Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana, are the leading producers of cocoa in the 21st century, accounting for some 60% of the world cocoa supply.
Chocolate consumption continues to grow around the world year after year. In 2019, total consumption reached 7.7 million metric tons.
The Learning Chef Winner’s Pack Includes:
TLC Water Bottle: Double Walled, Foam Insulated, & Vacuum Seal Cap.
TLC T-shirt: Tri-blend Material ensuring a comfortable, durable shirt that can stretch and breathe as needed for activewear clothing.
TLC Vinyl Stickers: The Learning Chef is proud to offer our very first series of die-cut stickers. Sourcing only the best quality; they are dishwasher safe because a thick, durable vinyl laminate protects your stickers from scratches, water & sunlight. Ensuring that sticker remains as beautiful as the day it came to you. Dimensions 3″×2.25″
Details of entry —
All entries must be entered into The Learning Chef’s photo album February 2021
One (1) entry per contestant.
All entries must be plated or plattered.
All entries must have a description.
Voting will take place on the 23rd of February 2021 at 12:00 AM PST
Semi-finals will be voted on the 25th of February 2021 at 12:00 AM PST