Sunday, July 1, 2012

Chocolate : A Jamaican adventure

Cocoa pod

Last week I took a trip to Point Hill, a district in the cool hills of St Catherine. On this trip is discovered many cool things. I'll eventually get to all of these discoveries but I'll begin with my discovery of the Cocoa Tree.
After a long journey, we arrived at the 'family yard' and decided that we wanted to get Otaheiti Apples, this is where the real journey began.  As we walked through the property I noticed these trees with colorful leaves and weird looking pods, it was the cocoa tree. Of course I wanted to take a close look, however all the pods had holes in them that was apparently from rats feeding on them (eew, I know!), so to my disappointment we were not able to use pick and examine those. 
As we continued our journey to find Apples, we came upon a second cluster of cocoa trees, that had pods that were undisturbed. I was very surprised when I was offered the pod to taste, and immediately declined. After everyone else tasted it I decided to give it a try and it was so yummy. The seeds inside the pod are sweet, with a rosy aroma, I couldn't stop  and soon I was the designated cocoa pod holder. 
Inside the Cocoa Pod
We eventually got our apples and went to the pepper farm. More on that in coming posts.
On the original run I did not take any pictures so before we decided to head home I went back to the tree to get a pod so I could share with you all.

Inside the Cocoa seeds
I also received the finished product after the cocoa beans are dried and made into chocolate. The stone like things are used to make chocolate tea. I was told to grate them into boiling water, add spices such as nutmeg, add my milk and sugar and I'll be good to go. I haven't yet tried it but i'll let you know how it turns out.
I would absolutely love to visit when they are making the actual chocolate. Consider it a future assignment. 
In the meantime you can visit these sites  to find out more about making chocolate. How to make chocolate

Raw Chocolate, the end result