The cocoa bean and its delectable products have been embraced for centuries. Originally consumed as a bitter beverage, it was claimed to alleviate fatigue and increase virility. Cocoa was thought to have magical qualities and became an integral part of Aztec and Mayan’s rituals and celebrations.
Legend says that Emperor Montezuma welcomed the Spanish Conquistador Don Hernán Cortés (believing him to be a deity) to a feast that included the chocolate drink. Seeing its commercial viability (after it was sweetened to adjust to the Spanish palate), Cortés brought cocoa back to Spain where it was adopted as a luxury beverage.
In fact, Giacomo Casanova believed chocolate to have aphrodisiac qualities, and was known to consume a cup of this rich beverage before each of his romantic interludes. Today, chocolate continues to be praised for both its aphrodisiac qualities and its endorphins.
The next time you have a cup of tea, why not give it an added boost with a bit of chocolate? Tea with chocolate just seems to be a natural marriage, as the nuances of chocolate can bring out the notes in tea.
“There are many factors to consider but in the end, my mantra when blending is balance,” says Linda Villano, Founder, SerendipiTea. Villano emphasizes that the chocolate should be used to enhance, coax or agitate the flavors that exist within the tea.
Raelene Gannon, Founder, Tea and All Its Splendour, told me her personal favorite for blending is milk chocolate, choosing to use it in any tea she would add milk to. She finds that dark chocolate, with more than 60% cocoa, has a very strong flavor and can overwhelm the tea. Villano prefers pairings where the natural floral, nutty, toasty or chocolaty notes of the tea are unveiled
If you’re looking to add chocolate to your own tea, Gannon recommends using cacao nibs or ground cocoa. Chocolate chips or smaller pieces of chocolate melt extremely easily but can create a bit of a mess in the cup.
For both Gannon and Villano, dessert is often a source of inspiration for their chocolate inspired teas, replicating a decadent treat in a low calorie beverage. It’s always a bit of trial and error, playing with the notes of both to unveil that perfect blend. When blending at home, don’t be afraid to experiment. Take your time, have fun with the flavors and discover the magic of adding chocolate to a cup of tea.
Chai: Smooth out the spicier notes of chai with chocolate
Raspberry Tisane: Replicate a raspberry chocolate cake by adding cocoa to your raspberry brew
Earl Grey: Try bringing out the bergamot notes of Earl Grey with a hint of chocolate
The post Elevate the Flavor of Your Favorite Tea with Chocolate appeared first on The Daily Tea.
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