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A lot of people love chocolate, but I really love chocolate. Every day I consume a substantial amount of dark chocolate with each cup of tea and coffee. I prefer my chocolate in rectangular prism form (bar), not in fancy little cubes or spheres. Flavored bars are acceptable, but it has to be a simple flavor like ginger, cocoa nib, almond or sea salt. But dark chocolate bars are already pretty expensive and the fancy flavors are even more expensive. For Christmas I got a 16oz bag of cocoa nibs but didn’t know what to do with them – I love them in chocolate bars but they’re a little too bitter by themselves. So I did what any self-respecting chocolate fiend would do – make his own chocolate! Using Trader Joe’s bargain-priced but high-quality Pound Plus chooclate bar, this batch of fancy chocolate turned out to be incredibly cheap and better tasting than any brand I’ve had.

Ingredients:Print

Directions:

1. Break up the dark chocolate into chunks and place in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave the chocolate on MEDIUM heat (e.g. power level 5 out of 10) for 5 minutes. Stir the chocolate when there are 3 minutes remaining, then again when there are 2 minutes remaining, then every 30 seconds until the chocolate is just melted. Don’t overheat the chocolate or it will burn. If there are only a few solid chunks left, just keep stirring and the chocolate will melt on its own.

2. Add the cocoa nibs to the bowl and stir well. Pour the chocolate onto a rimmed baking sheet.

Note: The larger the baking sheet, the thinner the chocolate will be. I used a 12″x16″ baking sheet and didn’t fill the entire sheet, but the cocoa nibs prevented the chocolate from spreading too much anyways.

3. Let the chocolate cool at room temperature for 20 minutes then sprinkle the sea salt on top, as little or as much as you like. Now let the chocolate cool completely. I found that it’s best to let the chocolate set at a temperature between 50 and 60 degrees. If you’re house is too warm, it will take forever to cool (but it will set nicely). If you put it in the fridge it will set quickly but not as well (more dried out, tan-colored marks on the chocolate).

4. Break up into random sized chunks.

Before shot:

Filed in Dessert, Gluten Free, Peanut Butterless, Snack, Vegetarian

4 Responses / Leave a comment »

  1. Jude says:

    Looks divine. When I lived in Costa Rica a few years back, I actually made chocolate nibs from the cocoa beans. Pretty labor intensive work. I liked putting them in my coffee for mocha. There’s not much processed chocolate actually sold in Costa Rica because most stores are not air-conditioned. Always love your posts.

    • Nick says:

      Wow, that sounds like a lot of work!

      You just drop cocoa nibs in a cup of coffee or add them to coffee grounds while brewing?

      Thanks Jude!

      • Jude says:

        I tried both ways, but the best was to roast the nibs a bit and add them to the coffee grounds. They are still a bit bitter, but I like bitter coffee (I drink Cafe du Monde with chicory) from Louisiana. I did occasionally add sweetener to the coffee to enhance the taste of the chocolate. I also drink my coffee with half and half and that cuts the bitterness as well. Bitter chocolate is an acquired taste I think since so many of us grew up on milk chocolate. The younger generation is being conditioned to like dark, bitter chocolate due to it’s availability.

        • Nick says:

          That sounds great in coffee. I have espresso or cappuccino every day, I wonder if I can work some ground cocoa nibs into there…

          Agreed – I love bitter chocolate. The cocoa nibs make the 72% dark chocolate bar even better.

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