Thursday, February 11, 2021

Soklet - Filter Kaapi 55% Dark Milk Coffee and Chicory Root (bar) - Feb. 11, 2021

Chocolate of the Day

"Filter Kaapi" 55% Dark Milk Chocolate Arabica Coffee and Chicory Root (bar)
Weight: 1.76 oz. (50 g.) in total bar
Calories: 261 calories in 1 bar
Cost: $9.00 (+ shipping) for 1 bar
Purchased from: Bar and Cocoa, online order 

Welcome to Day #3 of Chocolate and India Theme Week.

Today's Soklet Filter Kaapi 55% Dark Milk Chocolate Arabica Coffee (and) Chicory Root (bar) was manufactured by Regal Food and Beverages (Pollachi, Tamil Nadu, India).

We can thank Soklet co-founders, Harish Manoj Kumar (farmer, fermenter) and Karthi (Karthikeyan Palaniswamy) for the array of tree-to-bar Indian Origin chocolate bars featured on Chocolate Banquet this week (as well as small chocolate shops and distributors now carrying more bars from India).

Today's chocolate was inspired by South Indian filter coffee (filter kaapi/kappi).* It contained a rich, complex blend of aromas and flavors, with dark chocolate, green (spiced lentils, green coconut, green nut), spices (aromatic black pepper, black cardamom, licorice), chicory (with roasted root with slightly woodsy notes), and coffee, browned butter, and faint charcoal and  oxidized malted cocoa notes.

The sweetness level was subtle and not too sweet (thank you!)--allowing the full spectrum of flavors listed above to shine through.

The melt and mouthfeel were fairly smooth and creamy, enabled by judicious, well-balanced, amounts of cacao butter, ghee, and skim milk powder. 

The finish mellowed into a long tail of softer, flavorful cacao and sweet coffee.

The cacao used to make this bar was grown in plantations in the foothills of the Anamalais (hills), where cacao is intercropped with (grown with/under) coconut palm trees.

Ingredients: Cacao beans, cacao butter, cane sugar, ghee, skimmed milk powder, Arabica coffee, chicory root powder.

*Today's bar contained "Chickmagalur" (Arabica) coffee (presumably from Chikmagalur in the neighboring State of Karnataka (formerly Mysore), often considered the birthplace of coffee in India, with cultivation beginning in the early 1600s). (Cacao arrived in Tamil Nadu in 1798.)

Filter coffee in India is made with a blend of ground coffee and chicory root powder, that may be left to filter overnight and with hot, full fat milk and sugar added.

Chicory (a dandelion relative) is sometimes known as "coffeeweed." The roots are roasted and ground and used as a coffee supplement and/or substitute. It has also been used as a medicinal plant.

The French helped popularize and spread coffee with chicory blends worldwide. (In the U.S., we see this influence with Cafe du Monde chicory coffee in New Orleans typically served with hot milk.) An added bonus in India, 90% of cow (and buffalo) milk there contains A2 beta casein (milk protein) vs. milk in most of the U.S., Europe and Australia containing A1 beta casein protein. The A2 milk is thought to be easier to digest.

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