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Dutch processing
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deb
Calgary, Canada
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May 30, 2007 - 4:30 am
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When cocoa is alkalyzed or dutch processed what is the exact procedure? I read all about the term but I have yet to find out how it is dutch processed. Can someone explain the whole process to me?
Thanks.

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Sebastian
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May 30, 2007 - 11:26 am
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Either the nibs or the liquor are exposed to an alkalizing solution (there's a number of solutions that are approved for use, see 21 CFR 163 for a list that's more or less accepted throughout the world). A number of variables are then controlled - temperature, time, oxygen levels, concentration of the alkalizing solution, etc until the desired color/flavor are achieved. sometimes a neutralizing solution is used at the end of the process.

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ellie
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May 30, 2007 - 2:12 pm
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For those of us less advanced in food chemistry, what could be in the alkalizing and neutralizing solutions?

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Sebastian
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May 30, 2007 - 7:09 pm
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most commonly used are sodium hydroxide (or potassium) and citric acid

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ellie
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May 30, 2007 - 9:15 pm
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Any other substances? all completely harmless? How the difference in colour appears?

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Hans-Peter Rot
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May 31, 2007 - 4:22 am
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Dutched cocoa looks much darker, often blackish or just very, very, very dark brown. Natural cocoa has a lighter, more "natural" color, more along the lines of reds and oranges.

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ellie
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May 31, 2007 - 1:02 pm
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I also thought so, till I stumbled on info on huge range of possible colours as a result of dutching, including all the reds and orange tint one wishes. Seemed like with salmon - "whatever your order, Sir". Still looking for confirmation. Sebastian, whats lurking in there? 😉

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Sebastian
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May 31, 2007 - 6:20 pm
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Well, there's a lot of things going on. Playing around with the variables i mentioned earlier can produce a pretty large range of color - then there's the blending, where blend 1-4 different types of powders with one another to yield an almost infinate range of color variations (ok, so not infinate, but thousands). If you blend a heavily alkalized powder with a natural powder, you're gonna get something pretty unique..

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Gracie
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July 5, 2007 - 8:43 am
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Picking up on this again,(indulge me, I'm a newbie!) why is Dutching used at all...is it purely cosmetic (maybe to do with the public perception that a darker brown colour is bound to be more "chocolatey"?)or are there gustative advantages also? I noticed in some of the chocolate reviews, people mention a "Dutched" flavour, which they find unpleasant....what are the characteristics of Dutched as opposed to non-dutched?

Gracie

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Chrissie
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July 5, 2007 - 10:35 am
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I believe one of the reasons for using dutched cocoa is that it dissolves more readily in liquids. The dutching process also allows more cocoa butter to be extracted resulting in a lower fat powder, which probably contributes to it being more soluble.

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ChemicalMachine
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July 5, 2007 - 10:35 am
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quote:


Originally posted by Gracie

Picking up on this again,(indulge me, I'm a newbie!) why is Dutching used at all...is it purely cosmetic (maybe to do with the public perception that a darker brown colour is bound to be more "chocolatey"?)or are there gustative advantages also? I noticed in some of the chocolate reviews, people mention a "Dutched" flavour, which they find unpleasant....what are the characteristics of Dutched as opposed to non-dutched?

Gracie


Advantages that I know of are reduced astringency and increased water solubilty.

The dutched flavor is not necessarily bad, but the dutching process destroys some of the natural flavors and reduces complexity.

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Sebastian
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July 5, 2007 - 12:10 pm
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it's done purely to alter flavor and color.

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