National Chocolate Day is observed annually on October 28. While there are many specific chocolate related holidays throughout the year, National Chocolate Day celebrates all things chocolate. As America’s favorite flavor, chocolate is well deserving of it’s own day of honor and celebration. ( Some sources designate July 7 or December 28 as “Chocolate Day” or “International Chocolate Day”)
Chocolate comes from the seed of the tropical Theobroma cacao tree. Cacao, which has been cultivated for at least three millennia, is grown in Mexico, Central America and Northern South America. The earliest known documentation of using cacao seeds is from around 1100 BC. The cacao tree seeds have a very intense, bitter taste that must be fermented to develop the flavor.
Once the seeds have been fermented, the beans are dried, cleaned and roasted. After roasting, the shell is removed to produce cacao nibs. The cacao nibs are then ground into cocoa mass, which is pure chocolate in rough form. The cocoa mass is usually liquefied then molded with or without other ingredients. At this point of the process it is called chocolate liquor. The chocolate liquor may then be processed into two components: cocoa solids and cocoa butter.
Research has found that chocolate, when eaten in moderation, can lower blood pressure.
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