The History of Chocolate, the Origin of the Worlds Favorite Flavor
Ancient Chocolate History
The first records of Chocolate’s history begin with the domestication of the coco plants in 1500 BC, when the Olmec Indians began to grow them. The traditional method of enjoying chocolate at this time was to dry it and grind it, and then steeps it in water, much the same as we brew coffee today. This was such a delicacy that only the social elite were able to afford such luxury by the time of the Mayans. When Columbus first began to explore the new world he was introduced to the coco bean as cargo a Mayan trader was carrying.
The First European Chocolate
Columbus brought the first coco beans to Spain when he returned from America; however they didn’t gain much popularity. Until the history of chocolate gained footing in Europe as Spanish monks thought to serve the drink hot; this gained much popularity all over Spain, resulting in Chocolate Houses opening throughout Europe. In the 1700’s the first steam mechanized coco grinders which lead to a price drop in coco production that made chocolate available for all.
The next evolutionary step, in the history of chocolate, was made by eating solid chocolate in the form of cakes, rolls, and other chocolaty deserts. These tasty treats were available in Chocolate Houses and in wealthier homes across Europe. In the decade before the American Revolutionary War, the first American chocolate producing company began manufacturing chocolate on a massive scale; this company was called Bakers Chocolate Company.
Chocolate Historically Gains Popularity
Historically, chocolate is so loved by so many peoples that they come up with all sorts of ways enjoying it; it was thought to have medicinal purposes, which led to the opening of the Bakers Chocolate Company in America. In Amsterdam a process known as “Dutching” was invented, in which the coco butter is removed from the chocolate resulting in a smoother texture in the still popular beverage form of the chocolate.
The history of chocolate candies begins close to the middle of the 1800’s, when the marvelous invention of chocolate candies were born; it was discovered if the “Dutched” chocolate was sweetened then added back into the coco butter it made a delicious sweet and moldable treat. This was the birth of the modern chocolate bar; shortly later both milk and Swiss chocolate candies were invented. Chocolate’s history as the traditional gift of Valentines day began with the Cadbury company as the owners were the first to produce heart shaped boxes of their chocolates especially for this purpose.
The history of chocolate in America features a rich diversity of baked goods and candies. One of the baked goods beloved by Americans are brownies, the first published recipe for this now classic treat was published in the Sears Roebuck Catalogue back at the end of the 19th century. The Hershey Company and the Nestle Company were making so much money in the United States, that a Belgian confection maker opened Godiva Chocolate Company in 1926; all three companies are still popular chocolate manufacturers today.