Do you adore cacao as much as we do?
Cacao has a long and colorful history as a beloved plant beginning in Central and South America before 1500 BC. The entire cacao fruit was used and considered sacred by the Mayan, Olmec, and Aztec civilizations. Mayans believed that the gods discovered the cacao tree in a mountain offering a plethora of ambrosial delights. According to this mythology, the Plumed Serpent gave cacao to the Maya after the divine grandmother goddess Xmucane created humans from maize. Cacao beans were used for both a ritual beverage and a major currency system in pre-Columbian Mesoamerican civilizations. The generic name of this plant reflects its extraordinary esteem, as Theobroma comes from two Greek words meaning “food of the gods.”
So, what are cacao shells? This new ingredient is actually the husk separated from the whole cacao bean and can be used to imbue many recipes with that familiar decadence of chocolate. An infusion made from the shells has the aroma of fresh-baked brownies and tastes like a delicate chocolate-infused herbal tea. This brew also contains antioxidants and theobromine, which is a mild stimulant similar to caffeine. Cacao shells are quickly gaining popularity as a tea ingredient and can be used in coffee blends in addition to being brewed on their own. We hope you enjoy experimenting with this delicious new offering!