I have been addressing a number of these questions lately, so I thought it might beneficial to start answer them here, and soon make them a permanent link. If you have more questions, please let me know and I will try to address them.
Q: How do I purchase cocoa beans? I don’t see how to place an order.
A: From the main page go to Cocoa Beans. Prices and ordering information is there. In general, decide what and how much you want. E-mail me at alchemist at pcinw dot com with your shipping address and tentative order. I will email you back with an exact shipping and handling amount. You can then e-mail me back officially with your order.
Q: Why are you beans so much less expensive than what other companies are selling cocoa beans for?
A: I can not speak for others. All I can tell you is that I believe we all purchase them for approximately the same price. I have marked mine up to a level that I find fair, appropriate and sustainable.
Q: I have heard that cocoa beans have health benefit and that I can eat them raw.
A: I too have seen these studies and information about eating them raw. I also have seen documentation that raw cocoa beans (even organic) can be contaminated with molds, bacteria and other organisms. I would really recommended roasting to help minimize and potential problems. If you do decide to eat them raw, I would suggest pealing them of their husk, as this is where the contamination can reside. I do not suggest, or support eating raw cocoa beans. Please do your research and make an informed decision.
Q: Why don’t you sell Criollo?
A: So far I have not found a reliable source that I like. I presently have three leads that I hope will work.
Q: Do I have to use a Champion Juicer to make chocolate? I have seen that other people say I can use a mortar and pestle, blender or coffee grinder.
A: It all depends what you want your finished chocolate product to be like. I am trying to give you the information needed to make good chocolate, indistinguishable from commercial. I don’t want you to have to reinvent the wheel. That is why I am here. When you give someone a piece of your homemade chocolate, I want the comment to be “WOW, that’s great”, not “that’s good FOR homemade”. Know what I mean? Through MANY tests, I have found that the Champion Juicer is the only readily available product on the market that will give you the very smooth cocoa liquer needed for making chocolate. All of those other pieces of equipment did not give me the product I wanted. If you find another piece of equipment that works, please tell me.
Q: I don’t see my question here. How can I get answers?
A: Either write me at the above e-mail address, or better yet, leave a question in the comments section on the main page (here). That way other people can see and learn also. The only dumb question is an unasked one!