What are those white spots on your chocolate?
No matter the occasion, chocolate can be eaten year-round. But have you ever noticed that the colour of your chocolate has changed and wondered whether it is safe to eat?
Looks can be deceiving. Here are some chocolate-related natural occurrences you may not be aware of.
The usual brown hues of chocolate can become discoloured with a hazy white coating. This coating is called "chocolate bloom" and appears naturally. Although it can make the product taste a bit different, it's not harmful.
There are 2 causes of chocolate bloom:
- If chocolate is heated to a high temperature, the cocoa butter inside melts and separates from the rest of the ingredients. It settles on the surface in a white coating.
- If there's excess moisture, it causes the sugar in the chocolate to crystalize, which gives it a white, speckled or spotted coating.
You can help prevent chocolate bloom by storing it in a cool, dry place.
If your chocolate contains pine nuts, you might find yourself dealing with a rare case of pine mouth. Researchers have linked pine mouth to a specific type of pine nut known as Pinus Armandii.
Eating these pine nuts can sometimes lead to a lingering, metallic taste in the mouth that can last from a few days up to 2 weeks. While unpleasant, pine mouth is not an allergic reaction and does not put your health at risk.
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- Fact sheets: naturally occurring issues in food
- Fact sheet: rancidity
- Tackling food fraud (Chronicle 360)
- Pass the Mic: talking about food recall communications (Chronicle 360)
- Pass the Mic: talking about celiac disease (Chronicle 360)
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