Every year on July 7th, World Chocolate Day allows chocolate lovers around the world to indulge in their favorite treat without any guilt. The day also celebrates all kinds of goodies made from chocolate, including chocolate milk, hot chocolate, chocolate candy bar, chocolate cake, brownies, or anything covered in chocolate.
Chocolate comes from the seed of the tropical Theobroma cacao tree. Cacao has been cultivated for at least three millennia and grows in Mexico, Central America, and Northern South America. The earliest known documentation of using cacao seeds is from around 1100 BC.
Since cacao tree seeds have a very intense, bitter taste, they must be fermented to develop the flavor. Once fermented, processors dry, clean and roast the beans. After roasting, the shell is removed to produce cacao nibs.
The cacao nibs are then ground into cocoa mass, which is pure chocolate in rough form. The cocoa mass is usually liquefied, then molded with or without other ingredients. At this point in the process, it is called chocolate liquor. The chocolate liquor gets processed into two components: cocoa solids and cocoa butter.
Most Common Types of Chocolate
- Unsweetened baking chocolate – cocoa solids and cocoa butter in varying proportions.
- Sweet chocolate – cocoa solids, cocoa butter or other fat and sugar.
- Milk chocolate – sweet chocolate with milk powder or condensed milk.
- White chocolate – cocoa butter, sugar, and milk but no cocoa solids.
Most people love chocolate. In fact, nine out of ten people love chocolate. About 1 billion people eat chocolate every day. Besides the fact it tastes so good, there are some health benefits of chocolate. Chocolate increases serotonin and dopamine levels, which helps to boost the mood. Dark chocolate can also be especially good for you. Dark chocolate is a powerful source of antioxidants, plus it helps to improve blood flow, lower blood pressure, and reduce the risk of heart disease.
HOW TO OBSERVE #WorldChocolateDay
Celebrate by eating chocolate! Other ways to participate include:
- Visit your favorite restaurant and indulge in a delicious chocolate dessert.
- Host a chocolate tasting party and invite friends to bring their best chocolate recipes to share.
- Learn about chocolates from around the world.
- Read your kids a book about chocolate, like Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Candy’s Chocolate Kingdom, or The Chocolate Touch.
Be sure to post photos of your favorite chocolate treat on social media using #WorldChocolateDay.
WORLD CHOCOLATE DAY HISTORY
It’s unclear who came up with this yummy food day. However, the day is celebrated on July 7th because it was on this date in 1550 that chocolate was first brought to Europe. The first World Chocolate Day was celebrated in 2009.