Discover 7 interesting facts about chocolate that might surprise you!
White chocolate is not really chocolate
Yes, we’ve all been lied to. In order to be classified as real chocolate, a product has to contain cocoa solids or cocoa liquor. White “chocolate” contains cocoa butter instead.
Milk and dark chocolate are actually vegetables (well… kind of)
Milk and dark chocolate are made from cacao beans, that grow on the cacao tree (Theobroma cacao), an evergreen from the Malvaceae family (other members of the family include okra and cotton). Chocolate is therefor mostly made of a bean – and beans are legumes (plants that produce a pod with seeds inside it) so… Close enough to vegetables for us!
Chocolate was once used as money
In ancient Mayan times, the cocoa bean was used as currency as it was considered to be worth more than gold dust. They even restricted the cultivation of the beans, so the value of cocoa beans as money would not go down.
The world’s largest chocolate bar was created by Thorntons
The largest chocolate bar ever documented weighed 5,792.50 kg (12,770 lb 4.48 oz) and was created by Thorntons plc (UK) in Alfreton, Derbyshire, UK on October 7th, 2011. The chocolate bar measured 4.0 m (13 ft 1.48 in) by 4.0 m (13 ft 1.48 in) by 0.35 m (1 ft 1.78 in). The ingredients were sugar, dried whole milk powder, cocoa butter, cocoa mass, butter oil, and emulsifier. One chocolate bar to go, please!
Chocolate is healthy
Cocoa contains anti-oxidants, more specifically polyphenols, that protect your body against free radicals. The most important sources of polyphenols are fruit, vegetables, cereals, olives and… chocolate. They can also be found in coffee, tea and wine. Cocoa is also rich in flavonoids, of which the anti-inflammatory and anti-infective effects are well known. The presence of lecithin in chocolate has a positive effect on the cholesterol levels in your blood. Lastly, cocoa has a vasodilating effect: it lowers your blood pressure, with positive consequences for your heart and blood vessels. A chocolate bar a day keeps the doctor away! Right?
Soldiers in the Revolutionary War were sometimes paid in chocolate
During the Revolutionary War, some soldiers were fighting for freedom in exchange for chocolate. According to research done by the chocolate and candy company Mars, since chocolate didn’t spoil, it was used as a ration during the war. Who wouldn’t like to be paid in chocolate, right?
Brussels Airport is the biggest chocolate seller in the world
The airport’s website reports that they are the biggest seller of chocolate around the globe. Today, with more than 856 tons of chocolate sold each year in Zaventem, The Belgian Chocolate House is the largest sales point of chocolate worldwide: 1.633 kg per minute, 24/7.
Spoil your family and friends with nothing but the finest Belgian chocolate treats for Easter at The Belgian Chocolate House!