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Cocoa and Coconuts Tips

Melting

Visit the techniques section for a selection of information about melting baking chips and baking chocolate.

Storage

Chocolate products will stay fresh for well over a year if stored in a cool, dry place (65-70 degrees F.) It's a good idea to keep an eye on the temperature and humidity. Bloom, the gray-white film that sometimes appears on chocolate bars and chips, occurs when chocolate is exposed to varying temperatures. It does not affect the taste or quality of the chocolate.

Cocoa

Dutch Processed Cocoa

Dutching is a process in which unsweetened cocoa powder is processed with an alkalizing agent to neutralize the natural acidity of cocoa. This process gives Dutch processed cocoa a milder, mellower flavor and a darker, richer color than traditional cocoa.

For those reasons, the flavor and color of "Dutched" cocoa is often desired in gourmet recipes.

Use Dutch processed cocoa in any recipe calling for Dutch-processed cocoa or European cocoa.

Substitutions

Cocoa can be used as an easy substitute for most forms of baking chocolate and even baking chips called for in recipes. Use the following chart as a guideline for your needs:

Storage

Cocoa keeps very well when stored at room temperature in the original container. It retains its freshness and quality without refrigeration.

When storing cocoa, avoid contact with moisture and/or high heat. Both can cause clumping and gray discoloration, while neither affect cocoa flavor or quality.

Coconut

Toasting Coconut

Heat oven to 350-degrees F. Spread sweetened coconut flakes in a thin layer in a shallow baking pan. Bake 5 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until light golden brown.

Tinting Coconut

Combine 1/2-teaspoon water and a few drops of food color in a small bowl, small covered jar or re-sealable plastic bag.

Add 1 cup sweetened coconut flakes.

Toss with a fork or shake closed jar until coconut is evenly coated; store in airtight container.

Storage

To store a bag of coconut after opening, tightly close the bag and place it in the refrigerator. You can also place the opened bag inside a heavy re-sealable plastic bag and store it in the freezer

 

 
 
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