how to make cocoa powder (from cacao beans)

how to make cocoa powder from cacao beans

how to make cocoa powder from cacao beans

There are all sorts of things that I never really thought I’d make from scratch. Like cocoa powder (or raw cacao powder). Or a daily batch of coconut milk. Or our own coconut flour. And here I am, making all of those things. Oh, Saipan.

how to make cocoa powderI had an inkling that chocolate making was in our future when we stumbled upon cacao pods at the public market. Add in a visit from my parents and a ton of very precise research (aka- hours of watching chocolate making on YouTube) and my back porch was transformed into a small batch chocolaterie. And by chocolaterie, I mostly mean we made cocoa powder and chocolates to eat and share with friends.

Just in case you find a pile of cacao pods and want to make cocoa powder, I took pictures along the way (also because I want to remember how to do this if we attempt it again). Also, you can totally skip the first few steps and use cacao beans- just pick up after the first couple of steps. Let’s make some chocolate, shall we?

how to make cocoa powder from cacao beansFirst, you open all of the cacao pods and remove the cacao beans. Place in a bucket lined with banana leaves and cover. Leave for three days to ferment.

how to make cocoa powder from cacao beansThen, dry the fermented beans in the sun for a few days (are you following this timeline by the way? Yep, we’re a week in at this point).

how to make cocoa powder from cacao beansNext, spread the cacao beans on a cookie sheet and oven roast at 250 degrees for 25 minutes. Let cool.

how to make cocoa powder from cacao beansSeparate the cacao nibs from the shells (we tried several different methods- shelling with our fingers, twisting the bean and then shelling, pressing a rolling pin on the beans to crack the shells first- all of those worked).

how to make cocoa powder from cacao beanshow to make cocoa powder from cacao beansGrind the cacao beans. We did a round in the food processor and then small batches in the coffee grinder (we actually ran it through the coffee grinder twice to ensure a find grind).

how to make cocoa powderhow to make cocoa powderCocoa powder (or raw cacao powder, more accurately) = finished! Use this yumminess to mix up a batch of your very own chocolates or  skinny chocolate coconut bites or even homemade hot cocoa (if you don’t live on a tropical island). Seriously, friends- so good. SO much work, but so good!

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