Shopping for Chocolate


As the top-selling dessert flavor, chocolate is on every pastry chef's shopping list.


But chocolate purchasing has taken a sophisticated and complex turn with the influx of more producers, upgraded product lines and premium brands.


Labels listing cacao content and the origin of the beans are further complicating the process. However, the basics are the same: operators can buy chocolate in many forms; powdered cocoa, pistoles (buttons), chips, chunks, pellets, bars and blocks. Each is categorized by its percentage of chocolate liquor (ground nibs or heart of the cacao bean).

Unsweetened chocolate is 99% chocolate liquor. This variety has no sugar added, making it very dark and bitter. It is used only in baking and cooking.

Milk chocolate replaces some of the chocolate liquor with milk or milk solids; it contains about 20% cocoa solids. Its sweeter flavor and smooth texture make it a favorite of the candy industry.

White chocolate is made from cocoa butter mixed with sugar, milk solids and vanilla. It contains no chocolate liquor.

Bittersweet is unsweetened chocolate with sugar, cocoa butter and vanilla added; it is 35% to over 70% chocolate liquor.

Semisweet chocolate is similar in its content of sugar, chocolate liquor and cocoa solids to bittersweet; it can be used interchangeably in recipes.

Cocoa is pulverized from cocoa solids that have had the cocoa butter removed.

Sweet or dark chocolate contains between 15 and 35 percent chocolate liquor; it's lighter in flavor than bittersweet and semisweet but has a similar dark color.


Couverture
is bittersweet, milk or white chocolate that has a higher percentage of cocoa butter. It's used in doughs and batters to add moisture and creaminess and has excellent coating qualities for candies and cake icings.

More From FoodService Director

Sponsored Content
ballpark stadium food trends

From Bush’s Best ® .

Whether it’s at a college or university, a minor league game or a major league game, sports stadiums offer an array of delicious foods that sports fans love. A look at what’s happening in stadiums’ food offerings spotlights a few trends that foodservice directors should keep an eye on and adapt for their own menus.

1. More pork options

According to Technomic’s MenuMonitor, powered by Ignite, instances of pork on stadium menus have increased 33% year-over-year. Going ultra-indulgent with pork is trending, too—Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City, Mo., serves...

Sponsored Content
blended burger mushrooms

From The James Beard Foundation.

Blending meat and mushrooms in burgers and other iconic foods is a major trend heralded by a number of trendsetters and publications.

As many know, this trend was started by college and university chefs and dining directors because they could create better burgers (and meatballs, tacos and meatloaf) by blending at least 25% ground mushrooms in with beef. These operators knew that “the blend” was better-tasting, better for the environment, better nutritionally and better for holding because of the juicier texture.

In return for being...

Sponsored Content
college student meals

From WinCup.

Campus dining halls have come a long way in the past several years. Nowadays, students, staff and visitors alike have seemingly endless options to choose from—even more so at some colleges and universities, where food-hall concept dining is gaining momentum. This movement mirrors the food halls that are now established in major cities, offering consumers the variety they crave with several, or even dozens of, restaurants in one convenient space.

On college campuses, food-hall concept dining has staying power thanks to its ability to maximize both selection and...

Sponsored Content
Mushroom Council blended burgers

From The James Beard Foundation.

At the same time the James Beard Foundation announced the first annual Blended Burger Project™ Campus Edition, they concluded the third annual Blended Burger Project™ with a bang!

The Blended Burger Project™ contest concluded with 414 restaurants* in 45 states participating, and more than 400,000 consumer votes. Over the last nine weeks, the competition created a buzz on social media with more than 4,700 unique posts on Instagram and Twitter using the #BlendedBurgerProject hashtag.

“The Blended Burger Project™ is a phenomenal...

FSD Resources