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constanela

Is it my cocoa or my palate?

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I made a batch of flourless chocolate cookies for my sweetie today. Because I was working without flour, I splurged on the cocoa and bought Droste. After I mixed up the batter, I tasted it and frowned. It tasted charred or burned to me. A sniff of my box of cocoa confirmed that the it does smell charred....almost like charcoal. I gave her a taste and she said the batter was delicious and that it tasted like cocoa is supposed to taste. (She is not originally from the USA and is used to chocolate brands other than Hershey).

I grew up on Hershey's and this is my first time using anything but. Does higher quality cocoa have a burned taste to anybody else or is it just me?

By the way, the baked cookies taste good, but do have just a hint of that charred flavor. It is not nearly as intense as the raw batter.


Edited by constanela (log)

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Was it really a charred flavor, or was it just intensely bitter?

It could be roasted deeper, which may add flavors like that, or it could be other factors involved in the different chocolate... like dutch processing, etc.

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Droste should not taste charred or smell like charcoal. I've used a few boxes of it, and "charred" or "smokey" are not adjectives I would use to describe it. I wonder if you got a batch made with over-roasted beans or something.

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What else was in the recipe that might have had an effect on the flavor?

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That's funny because I think Hershey tastes burnt and find it dry. Later I found out that it's because they burn their beans on purpose to give it more "flavor".

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What else was in the recipe that might have had an effect on the flavor?

The recipe was very simple. Just cocoa, powdered sugar, vanilla, egg whites, a pinch of salt and chopped walnuts. I can't identify anything else, plus the cocoa in the box smells like the batter tastes.

My significant other thinks I'm just tasting the bitterness of a better quality of chocolate, so perhaps it is me after all!

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I would agree that it is the more bitter taste due to the "better quaility chocolate"(dark) many people that I have offered cocoa nibs to have said the same as you. I am a very limited baker but maybe the addition of some form of dairy may have helped cut the bitterness. When you say Hersheys are you refering to the milk or the dark version.

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Thanks for the input everyone. The cookies ended up tasting great, so I'll chalk this up to a palate uninitiated to the finer nuances of better chocolate.

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