Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Trinidad to Pennsylvania: Chocolate!

"When I die," I said to my friend, "I'm not going to be embalmed. I'm going to be dipped." Milk chocolate or bittersweet was [the] immediate concern. ~Adrianne Marcus~

Apparently I am a chocolate genius since I got 8 out of 10 questions correct. Anyone out there actually surprised by that?



*image from www.digitalarthawaii.org


Chocolate Trivia: (taken from hersheypa.com and corsinet.com)

-The botanical name of the chocolate plant is Theobramba cacao, which means "Food of the Gods."
-One plain milk chocolate candy bar has more protein than a banana.
-Ten percent of U.S. Recommended Daily Allowance of iron is found in one ounce of baking chocolate or cocoa. Chocolate also contains Vitamins A1, B1, B2, C, D and E as well as calcium, potassium, sodium and iron.
-Cultivation of cacao trees can occur only in tropical climates, 20 degrees north or south of the equator. Principal growing areas include West Africa, Brazil, Ecuador and the Indies. Generally, it takes five years before trees begin bearing fruit in the form of pods that grow from the tree trunk. Each pod contains an average of 20 to 40 cream-colored cocoa beans. Nearly 400 beans are required to make a pound of chocolate liquor, the semi-liquid mass produced by grinding the beans. A non-alcoholic substance, chocolate liquor is the basis of all chocolate and cocoa products.
-The earliest cocoa plantations were established in 600 AD, in the Yucatan, by the Mayans.
-Drinking cocoa became popular in the USA after the Boston Tea Party, partly as a means of protest because it was not taxed in the way tea was.



*image from hersheypa.com


Chocolate in Pennsylvania:

-Pennsylvania is second only to California in its number of chocolate and cocoa processing establishments.
-Hershey, PA is named for Milton Hershey who was the first American to experiment with creating milk chocolate. He came up with his own formula after visiting Swiss chocolatiers who would not share the process they had invented.
-He founded the town as a company town for his employees but felt strongly it should not be a faceless company town with merely utilitarian rows of identical structures. He envisioned and created a family friendly town with parks, recreational opportunities, and good public transportation. The quality of his product and the well-being of his workers were always placed above mere profit.
-Unable to have children, he and his wife established a school for orphan boys which continues today to serve over 1100 financially needy boys and girls today. Three years after his wife's death Hershey endowed the school with is entire fortune. He himself only completed the 4th grade. His philanthropy was motivated by a deep sense of obligation to use his wealth for the good of others.




*image from http://www.flickr.com/photos/sgmccook/57608910/

Chocolate in Trinidad:

-Trinidad is 11 degrees north of the equator so it falls within the 20 degree north/south range where cacao can be grown.
-Hershey uses cacao from Trinidad.
-As strong as the smell of chocolate in Hershey, PA is, the smell of driving through a cacao plantation is 100 times more. It was the most intoxicating aroma I have ever encountered. I wanted to get out of the car and re-enact the poppy field scene from The Wizard of Oz.

23 comments:

furiousBall said...

I drove by Hershey this past weekend and snuffled out my car window like a golden retriever. it was glorious

SignGurl said...

I have been watching Chocolate week on the Food Network and I'm all in a dither. I need chocolate!!

Fortress Guinness said...

did i ever tell you that my dad worked for Cadbury's for years and that we have (what used to be) a Cadbury's factory right here in my own little home town...??? yes Lime, i am a Cadbury's kid...!!! and i have the teeth to prove it...!!! sometimes when the wind blows from the north-west here, all you can smell is chocolate...!!! god it's wonderful...!!! (^_^) xxx

airplanejayne said...

I am in chocolate heaven after reading this.

Tommy said...

Only 8 out of 10? Slacker! And you call yourself a cacao fiend? Pfffffft! ;))

(Oh, and thanks for the award, sugar. I guess I can give you a break on missing the 2 questions for that.)

S said...

Yum chocolate.
That would be such a trip smelling that lovely chocy smell while wandering around in the country!

Seamus said...

100 times more intoxicating???? Must be plumb orgasmic! ;)

Blither said...

I'm slightly chocolate-challenged. 4/10. I rarely eat chocolate. I'm more of a tangy and tart gal.

:)

jillie said...

I took the test THEN read your article. I could just lick that chocolate right now. I have none in the house too!! Whaaaaa!!!!!

I feel a chocolate run coming on ;o)

Maddy said...

I didn't know much about Hershey's but I was o.k. with the rest of the facts......apart from the dates......and the geography.....
Cheers

Cooper said...

6 out of 10 - I picked a bunch of the wise-ass answers, surprise, surprise...

Suldog said...

We actually spent part of our honeymoon in Hershey. We travelled down the east coast, the greater part being spent in Washington, but we did two nights at the Hotel Hershey. Great old drafty grand hotel, waited on hand and foot, it was off-season so the staff had little to do other than pamper the two of us. It was great!

Breazy said...

I would love to visit the Hershey plant one day. I don't understand how people work there without getting fired because if it were me I would get fired for eating more than working...mmmmmm!

I can visualize you in a field of cacao except I want to know if you would be dressed as Dorothy was? LOL!

have a great day!

sorry but my word for word verification is actually NYLON.

G-Man said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
G-Man said...

That was me.....

OK...

I hope you Don't have to take the Hershey Highway, to get to the Hershey Factory...
hehehehehe
G.....xox

S said...

Ooh hey! I didnt know that I also got the sassy mama blog award! Hurray hurray!
You do know you are showing a link to my 45 pounds larger ass you ratfink! LOL

Its ok ...LOL...thank you thank you, I accept the award and bow gratefully!

And, I dont know how I missed that post, I think it was because there was no school yesterday.....

Dorky Dad said...

Yeah, I'll be eating plenty of that this week. Can't say I'm an expert, however. All I know is that it tastes GOOOOD ...

Zombieslayer said...

The quality of his product and the well-being of his workers were always placed above mere profit.

Why can't we have more people like this today?

As for the iron, I'm convinced women crave chocolate because their bodies tell them they need the iron and chocolate is the quickest fix for iron that tastes good (spinach is another and if you had the choice between the two, I think I know which one you'd pick)

BBC said...

I love chocolate but for some reason I don't eat much of it.

Jocelyn said...

Um, saying a milk chocolate bar has more protein than a banana is kind of like saying a piece of bread has more sodium than a bell pepper.

Or something.

Moosekahl said...

Running through the cacao fields sounds fun :)

tsduff said...

Well, I got them all wrong (chocolate trivia) except for 2 questions. Guess I'm washed up in the chocolate field. Now my Sweetie on the other hand would have gotten a perfect score, as his veins are pumping pure chocolate through them.

ed said...

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