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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Recipes/Ingredients > What you need to know about chocolate for brewing
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Old 02-24-2009, 02:29 PM   #11
Edcculus
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Keep me posted on the cocoa nibs. I'm interested to see the results. Obviously, the nibs contain much more fat than powder. In theory, more fat in beer=bad. The thing is, I see so many people say they have good results with nibs. If fat is so bad in beer, why are nibs working?

My guess:
-You don't grind the nibs, so you get minimal fat extraction.
-Nibs people buy are probably higher quality than the nibs most mega-mart cocoa powder is derived from. Better beans mean better flavor. If you doubt this, try a Hershey's Special Dark bar next to a high quality bar, preferably from Trinitario beans that is at least 50% cocoa. You will notice that the Hersheys tastes like wax while the higher quality bar (from higher quality beans) tastes tangy/bitter with an underlying sweetness that melts pleasantly in your mouth.

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Old 02-24-2009, 11:59 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Edcculus View Post
You will notice that the Hersheys tastes like wax while the higher quality bar (from higher quality beans) tastes tangy/bitter with an underlying sweetness that melts pleasantly in your mouth.
I heard once, and mind it could be urban legend... Chocolate in the U.S. (especially companies like Hershey) are actually allowed a certain amount of food grade wax in their chocolate. I may be crazy but I have noticed that plain chocolate in Canada (Quebec) actually tastes better than in the U.S. apparently for that reason. Allegedly they are not allowed to use such ingredients in Canada...
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Old 02-25-2009, 12:32 AM   #13
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Great chocolate lesson! I would love more tips from others on brewing with chocolate. Do you add cocoa powder during the boil? Mash? Add an liquid infusion at secondary? I think most of the 'chocolate' beers I have had were actually made with chocalate malted barley and not cocoa.

Maybe just reading Edcculus' recipe for Macadamia Nut Chocolate Stout would satisfy me?!

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Old 02-25-2009, 01:12 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by reanime View Post
I heard once, and mind it could be urban legend... Chocolate in the U.S. (especially companies like Hershey) are actually allowed a certain amount of food grade wax in their chocolate. I may be crazy but I have noticed that plain chocolate in Canada (Quebec) actually tastes better than in the U.S. apparently for that reason. Allegedly they are not allowed to use such ingredients in Canada...
I wouldn't doubt it. I never noticed until recently. We did a chocolate tasting in the class I learned all this in. It was a class I took for fun last semester before I graduated called Vines, Wines and Brews. All about the production, manufacture, making and tasting of coffee, tea, beer, wine and chocolate. Our chocolate tasting consisted of chocolates that were 75% cocoa, 60% ,45%, the Hershey's Special Dark (which I believe is 30%), and a milk chocolate. To properly do a tasting, you start with the highest cocoa % and work your way down. That way, you aren't getting noticeable bitter each time. The first three were amazing. Then the Hersheys. It was hard, did not shine, dull snap, and did not melt the way the others did.

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Originally Posted by CreeDakota View Post
Great chocolate lesson! I would love more tips from others on brewing with chocolate. Do you add cocoa powder during the boil? Mash? Add an liquid infusion at secondary? I think most of the 'chocolate' beers I have had were actually made with chocalate malted barley and not cocoa.

Maybe just reading Edcculus' recipe for Macadamia Nut Chocolate Stout would satisfy me?!
Most "chocolate" beer contains chocolate malt. A lot of people have been adding actual chocolate. I think a good consensus has been to mix it with a small amount of water and bring it just shy of a boil in a saucepan. Whisk to make sure the cocoa breaks up and gets incorporated. Add this at flameout.

Funny thing about that stout. It was VERY good. Until my roomate decided to add 4 oz of macadamia nut extract. Now it tastes like ****. I dont want to post a recipe that isn't tried and true.
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Old 02-25-2009, 01:27 AM   #15
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Roomates! He prolly ate your leftover pizza with the beer, left the dishes in the sink and then used your towel after his shower....

Seriously though, thanks for the Cocoa tips.

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Old 09-14-2009, 01:39 AM   #16
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Hello beer lovers and guzzlers. I've got a jar of cacao seeds my friend and I picked, fermented and roasted while in Trinidad. I just need to crack the shells off of them and grind them up. I was going to use them to make some sort of a chocolate stout but would seriously hate to have the chocolate go to waste if it ruins the batch. I definitely want to find the best way to bring out the flavor of the chocolate. I don't have the equipment to press the cocoa and separate the oil. It sounds like though nibs are fine and maybe I could grind them up fairly fine to bring out the flavor some more.

Any comments or suggestions would be helpful.

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Old 09-14-2009, 01:55 AM   #17
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Ive recently heard a lot of people using cocoa nibs with great success. I believe they are either using them whole, or just cracking them a bit. Nobody is complaining about head retention either. My theory is that in the un-ground nib form, most of the fat is not able to get into the beer. I've also begun to think that a little of the fat is necessary for that real chocolate flavor.

JippZ:

My suggestion would be to break them up a bit then "dry hop" with them. Taste it every once and a while to test for the level of chocolateyness you want.

Do you know what variety the cacao you have is? I'm assuming Trinitario since you got them from Trinidad? That should make a mighty fine chocolate beer! Its a rather rare variety, but tastes soooo much better than Forestaro.

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Old 09-19-2009, 06:49 AM   #18
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Thanks for the suggestion! I didn't think of dryhopping them but I'll definitely give that a try now.

I'm pretty sure they are Trinitario. We've used the beans to make chocolate sauces and even brownies and they've come out absolutely delicious. Beer will be the next venture.

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Old 10-10-2009, 04:05 PM   #19
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I have 8 oz of pure cocoa beans... I thought I was purchasing nibs... But now I am confident I have raw beans....

What is the best way to add these little basterds to my secondary? Should I roast them and them crack them and add them? Or so I consider not using them at all since they aren't processed?

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Old 10-10-2009, 04:45 PM   #20
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well, you might as well take a shot at roasting them. I'm not too sure the best way to go about it though. Maybe a cast iron skillet? I know thats how some people roast coffee.

Some health food stores will sell the nibs. Brewmasters Warehouse also sells them now

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