Level: Novice

Reading time: 3 min

It is another of the short and sweet speed rounds of Ask the Alchemist.

What is your favorite chocolate?


Who is your favorite chocolate maker?

Myself.  Love has to start at home.

Can I make chocolate from unfermented cocoa beans?

You can but I don’t recommend it.  I’ve yet to taste any that have tasted of chocolate.  Many of the compounds that associate with chocolate are created in the fermentation process.

Do you offer of plan to offer unfermented cocoa?

I did many years ago but no longer do and have no plans to again.  I don’t find them suitable for making chocolate.

i don't have neither the Chocolate beans nor the cocoa butter to make the chocolate. So, what can i use instead of those ingredients, and how can i let my chocolate bar stay harder at room temperature. And one last thing could you help me please, i want to start a chocolate making business and i want to make the best quality chocolate.

Um….I can see no way you can make quality chocolate without using cocoa beans.  I guess you could use cocoa liquor but you are then only adding sugar and where that might be an ok start, it is hardly you making it. Someone else has done all the work.  Likewise you could use cocoa powder but without cocoa butter you can’t do that either.

I have pressed the oil out of my nibs with the press you sell.  How do I make the left over cocoa into super fine powder. 

I don’t know.  Everything I have tried on the small scale is either not fine enough or creates too much heat and makes the residual cocoa butter melt and clog everything up.  I’ve heard ball mills can do it but I’ve not experimented there since stainless steel shot is so expensive and I know of no small affordable ones.  The best I can suggest is chilling your powder as cold as you can get it, grinding it in a blade grinder, and then filtering it through 1 or more fine sieves.

And since I am keeping these anonymous I have to share some questions.  These continue to come in.  I understand ignorance is not a sin, but not doing a little basic research is.  The search function isn’t half bad.  And sometimes I’m just at a loss for how to respond.

Can I sweeten my chocolate with agave syrup?


I mixed honey into my chocolate and now it is too thick to temper. What did I do wrong?

You didn't read the Water FAQ.

Want to just stir cocoa powder and butter and sugar together to make chocolate but it’s gritty.  I saw someone do it on a video and he said it was so good but it isn’t.

There is no question there.  And people lie.  I’m not sure what else to say.

Can I use a blender to make chocolate instead of a melanger?


My chocolate doesn’t taste good.

I’m sorry.

Where can I buy cocoa beans?

Um…………..I sell them

What is the perfect chocolate recipe?

There isn’t one. It is like asking what the perfect piece of artwork is.  Everyone has their own vision and version of perfect.

I want to make chocolate but don’t want to buy machines.


And I’ll leave you with this one.

I am going to open a chocolate making business making the best chocolate.  What do I have to do?  I don’t know how to make chocolate.


There will be no Ask the Alchemist next week as I finish up preparations for our first Profile Roasting Seminar.