Making chocolate: an experiment

A few weeks back Julia at ‘A Slice of Cherry Pie‘ was offering 5 Mayan Magic Chocolate kits to food bloggers who promised to blog the experience. Sounded like fun and as I love chocolate I rushed in and bagged one. It arrived a few days later but it sat untouched for a while – I was busy and wanted to do it justice and also blog as much of each step as I could… here is what you get and do:

1. The kit:

2. What’s inside:

3. The butters:

4. The powders:

5. My chosen flavours (lavender, cardamom, lemon zest). I hardly used any of each:
6. The butter ready to melt in a bain marie (i.e. over hot water):

7. The powders after sieving (they needed it they had gone quite solid):

8. The melted butters:

9. Whisking in the powders (I added a little of the agave at the end for some sweetness but it didn’t need much):

10. Then I spilt it into 4 lots and added the flavours and kept one lot plain. I learnt here that you need to keep each lot warm else it cools so quickly you can’t pour it into the moulds properly and it becomes all mis-shapen (see later)

11. I poured (and pushed!) it into ice cube trays and got 4 ‘cubes’ per flavour so 16 cubes in total. Then it went into the fridge to set for 1.5 hours (or in my case overnight).

12. Next morning at coffee time so we popped the cubes from the trays.

13. Some worked:

14. Some looked a bit mangled:

And the taste:

The flavours were nice but over-powered any chocolatey-ness (and I only used a teeny bit of each), the plain version was okay but not brilliant.

The texture:

Very grainy/gritty and not smooth at all, disappointing. Alex over at ‘A Brit’s Dish a Day‘ had the same problem so I’m guessing that’s how it is rather than us getting it wrong.


A bit. But the instructions aren’t clear that it will cool so quickly and become difficult to pour into moulds. I made it hard for myself by doing 4 flavours with one kit – the instructions anticipate one flavour being added to the melted butters before the powder.

Would I buy one?

Having looked up the price (£14.25 plus shipping, as far as I can tell, for 150g of chocolate) I had to lie down. I can get 3 different flavored Rococo bars (70g each) for this money or about 14 Divine plain bars (100g each). I’m sorry to have to say that I wouldn’t buy this either for myself or as a gift. It wasn’t enough fun, its pricey and the taste/texture wasn’t the tops. 

Not currently a winner – it needs some re thinking I feel.

6 thoughts on “Making chocolate: an experiment”

  1. Oh it sounds so disappointing!
    At least you gave it a go, think I’ll stick to buying mine!

  2. Great post and well done for giving it a try. Worth knowing too that you don’t need to add much flavour when making chocolate, makes me want to experiment with other chocolates and flavours.

  3. Oh no – I’m sorry that yours didn’t turn out great either (although I am a bit relieved that it wasn’t just me that had a problem!)

  4. Stephen said (I’m doing it this way since annonymous is the only way I can get a comment posted for some reason):
    Being a geologist I’m curious about how chocolate becomes smooth (or not in your case). Crystal size is based on cooling rate in rocks, so maybe it is in chocolate as well. To get it smooth the crystals need to be very small. small crystals are created by fast cooling……i.e. very warm molten chocolate into supercooled moulds. Any knowledgeable choco experts out there ?

  5. Thanks for all the comments – it was disappointing especially considering the price (thankfully i got it free!). i learnt something about flavouring chocolate tho so I’ll give that a go with good cooking chocolate sometime.

    As for the issue of graininess I don’t know enough about either geology of how chocolate is made but I’m going to see what I can find out when I get chance.

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