ITALIAN COCOA
Posted: 06 September 2011 03:12 AM   [ Ignore ]
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Please, does anyone know the difference between Italian cocoa, regular cocoa, and Dutch cocoa?  I have heard that Italian cocoa has a much higher ratio of cocoa which really makes a difference.

  Any ideas on where to purchase this?  I have a recipe waiting for this ingredient!!!!

All suggestions very welcome…..thanks in advance!

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Posted: 06 September 2011 12:25 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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almonds - 06 September 2011 06:12 AM

much higher ratio of cocoa

higher ratio of cocoa to….what?  It’s all cocoa. Now, some cocoas have more cocoa solids with respect to cocoa butter, but that isn’t necessarily a good thing.

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Posted: 06 September 2011 12:40 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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I can’t help with the difference between Italian and the others, but the difference between ‘regular’ and ‘Dutched’ is that the Dutch is processed with alkalai, which changes the pH.  Most of Rose’s recipes use Dutched.  You can always tell the difference by reading the label, as Dutch will either say ‘Dutch processed’ or, in the ingredients, it will say ‘processed with alkalai.’  It gives a deeper chocoalte flavor and something else flavor-wise, too, I forget what.  Regular usually says ‘natural’ and will not have anything about alkalai or Dutch processed (Hershey’s is an example, and there’s an organic brand with a bear on it, also). 

To make a perfect world and easy decision, if you can get E. Guittard Cocoa Rouge (Sur La Table carries it), it’s excellent!  It’s Dutched, and it has a high fat content, so it won’t contribute dryness to your product.  As a note, it’s not good to go off the label for fat contents and such, because the quantities are so small they’re not really useful to extrapolate for quantities used in baking—but I can guarantee the E. Guittard is fabulous!  A lot of folks also like Droste, which is supposed to be very good, but I have not tried it.

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Posted: 06 September 2011 12:43 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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Welcome!

If the recipe specifies cocoa powder (and not hot chocolate mix), then they are all unsweetened 100% cocoa solids.  Some brands are dutched (processed with alkalai) to produce a rounder, less bitter flavor, and as this is characteristic of many European brands, it may be what is meant.  Some brands also have less naturally ocurring cocoa butter, which may or may not be an issue.  What sort of recipe is it for?

I think Perugina makes a cocoa powder, but I haven’t seen it sold in too many places.  I imagine any god quality dutched cocoa would be just fine.

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