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Why Cacao?

So there is Cacao and Cocoa what is the difference you ask. Well they sound awfully similar but in fact here are some facts about each.

Cacao is in fact the purest form of chocolate you can have. This means it is raw and less processed that chocolate bars of cocoa. Cacao is thought to have the highest source of antioxidants of all foods and the highest source of magnesium of all foods. It has been used throughout many cultures for years for health purposes and even used as a high trade commodity.

The Cacao fruit trees produces pods and these cracked open reveal cacao beans.

Cacao Butter is taken from the fattiest part of the fruit and makes up the outer lining of the inside of a single cacao bean. It is white in colour and has a rich, buttery texture that resembles white chocolate in taste and appearance. Cacao butter is removed from the bean during production and the remaining part of the fruit is used to produce raw cacao powder.

There are cacao nibs which are simply bits of the bean all chopped into bite size pieces just like chocolate chips but they are without the fat and sugar. Cacao nibs contain all of the fibre, fat, and nutrients that the cacao bean does.

Cacao paste comes from the cacao nibs and they have been slowly heated to preserve the nutrients and are melted into a bark known that is a less-processed form of dark chocolate bars. Cacao paste can be used to make raw vegan desserts or you can just eat it as an indulgent snack by itself!

Cacao powder contains more fibre and calories that cocoa powder. This is because the Cacao bean is more intact. Cacao is a wonderful source of monounsaturated fats, cholesterol-free saturated fats, vitamins, minerals, fibre, natural carbohydrates, and protein that make it an excellent source of nutrients.

Now lets talk about Cocoa

This is a powder form that you are probably used to buying in the store is the heated version of the Cacao bean, although isn't in the raw form It is very good for you and also a lot less expensive. Cocoa powder is produced similarly to cacao except cocoa undergoes a higher temperature of heat during processing. Surprisingly, it still retains a large number of antioxidants in the process. It’s excellent for your heart, skin, blood pressure, and even your stress levels. If you are buying Cocoa powder make sure that you are buying the plain version Cocoa mixes often contain extra sugar. Look for regular Cocoa powder or the Dutch processed version which is also know as the dark chocolate version. dark cocoa) is cocoa powder that has been processed with an alkalized solution. Which makes it less acidic and much richer in taste. Regular cocoa powder retains a more acidic nature and bitter taste and is used in baking recipes with baking soda where Dutch-processed cocoa powder is not since it has already been alkalized. Cocoa powder is a rich source of fibre, has little fat, and has a bit of protein in it as well.

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