紐約瘋什麼 / New York Raves No. 4
純淨濃醇的巧克力 / Pure and decadent chocolate
世界每一個角落, 越來越多人開始對食材敏感度提高。你有沒有想過最愛吃的巧克力是怎麼製作而成的呢? 可可豆的來源為何, 添加的乳製品來源為何, 使用的砂糖來源為何? 除了近年來研究指出糖分對健康的傷害, 不明來源且加工過多的食品也會對身體造成嚴重的負擔。但巧克力帶來的味蕾享受是否就該被剝削, 那當然不是的。其實巧克力是好物, 一天一小塊黑巧克力是對人體有益的, 但要找到純淨的巧克力再下手才是王道。我一直是紐約Mast Brothers巧克力的愛好者, 這次帶大家來看看Mast Brothers的巧克力工廠還有它簡單、無添加的製作過程。
All around the world, more and more people are becoming aware of the integrity of ingredients in food items. Have you ever thought about how your favorite chocolate was made? Where did the cocoa beans come from? Where did the dairy additives come from? Where did the (refined) sugar come from? Besides the negative effects sugar brings to our health based on recent studies, processed ingredients and additives from unknown sources are heavy tolls to our bodies as well. But should the pleasure of enjoying a piece of chocolate be ripped away from us? Absolutely not! Chocolate is actually great, a small piece of dark chocolate a day is beneficial to us, but eating only ethically and purely made chocolate is the way to go. I have always been a fan of Mast Brothers Chocolate in New York, so I'm bringing you guys inside the chocolate factory this time to see the simple and clean process of chocolate making.
Mast Brothers的起源是兩兄弟許了自己做高品質巧克力的願, 從一開始自己在家裡DIY學習, 尋找有良心且能長期合作的可可豆供應商, 到做出完美的成品後才開了店舖並接受訂單, 他們對品質除了堅持還是堅持。生產巧克力之外, 他們也希望大家有機會瞭解巧克力製作過程, 因此自去年開始便開放工廠以小組小組的方式讓民眾參觀。除了讓有興趣的人開開眼界, 也希望所有來參觀的人都能快速學習巧克力品質的辨識能力。參觀的過程約60分鐘, 過程非常完整, 有任何問題的人也絕對都能獲得細心解答。下午4:30開始的導覽, 我們一進去就看到桌上的乾燥可可果及一字排開的試吃巧克力。助導員Derek拿起可可果說, 「這就是可可豆的家」。經過Derek詳細的解說, 我們更加的瞭解這個小小工廠的用心。他們不但精挑細選可可豆, 而且為了更能融入採買的過程, 廠裡的員工一起到多明尼加去把可可豆一袋一袋的運上船開回來。這破了紐約近年來入口的紀錄, 因為已經沒有人自己去採購食材並僱船進口了。就這一點, 我非常佩服Mast Brothers的精神。
Mast Brothers was founded by two brothers who had the dream of making excellent quality chocolate. From learning to make the chocolate at home by themselves, to locating ethical cocoa bean farm/distributor for long-term contract, to finally opening their brick and mortar store with the highest quality products, they insisted on best of the best and nothing else. Besides producing fine chocolate, they also wanted people to understand the process of chocolate-making. From last year, they opened up the factory for small group tours. Besides letting chocolate-lovers have the rush of visiting a chocolate factory, they also hope all of the visitors would quickly pick up the ability to identify good chocolate. The entire tour took 60 minutes, a very extensive tour, and you would get all of your questions answered with patience and thoughts, no matter what they might be. The tour began at 4:30PM, upon arriving, we saw a dried cacao pod and a line of various chocolate for tasting on the table. Our friendly tour guide, Derek, picked up the cacao pod and said, "this is where the cocoa beans are from." After a thorough introduction from Derek, we had better understanding of the history of this small chocolate factory. After the business became more established, they not only care about buying excellent cacao but wanted to also get involved with the buying process. Last year, the entire Mast Brothers team went to the Dominicans to do a personal buying tour. Not only that, they hired a boat, transferred and shipped bags of beans back to New York by themselves. I believe it broke the recent import record in New York, really, no one does this any more, but that's how much the Mast Brothers care about the process.
看過影片瞭解可可豆的來源後, 我們便開始正式的學習巧克力製作方法了。Derek解釋一袋袋的可可豆需要先經過烘烤, 讓外殼酥脆, 才能簡易的取得最中心的巧克力豆。可可豆經由仔細的人工篩選, 把雜物及不完整的豆子取出, 均勻的舖在一層層的烤盤上送入烤箱。
After watching a short video about their buying trip, we went around the factory to learn about the chocolate-making process. Each bag of beans needed to be hand filtered to rid of twigs or debris before they could be laid out on trays to go in the oven. Derek explained that roasting the beans would make the husks crunchy and easy to remove, and it's the first step to get to the goodness in the middle.
烘烤完成冷卻後送入能輕鬆的把可可豆外殼剝除的機器後, 這些可可豆才能變身為美味的巧克力。Derek拿了一粒豆子剝開給我們看, 也讓我們嚐嚐還沒有入石臼研磨機中的原味巧克力豆, 苦苦的澀澀的但非常的香甜。通常, 可可豆剝下來的外殼都是以垃圾處理, 但Derek他們喜歡把這些外殼送給有小菜圃或花園的朋友們做堆肥原料。除此之外, 更有客人利用這些外殼研發出巧克力威士忌, 有心人真的果然什麼都能做到呢。
After roasting and resting until the beans come to room temperature and safe to handle, they were then sent into a vacuum like husk-remover machine. Derek took a bean and crushed the husk to show us the cocoa bean inside, a 100% pure cocoa bean before any grinding or processing. We each took a bite, it was bitter yet extremely aromatic. Usually, the leftover husks go into trash, but Derek told us that they gave some of them away for people who like to add the husks to the compost for their gardens and vegetable patches. Also, a customer took the husks and made chocolate-infused whiskey, truly anything can happen when you see through a creative idea!
乾淨去殼的巧克力豆接下來就是要送進石臼研磨機了。以前還沒有機器時, 巧克力豆也是用石臼磨, 但得用手慢慢磨, 也因此在很久以前巧克力是一種完全的奢侈。我們進入研磨房後, Derek把一些巧克力豆送入一個剛啓動的石臼, 並讓我們知道研磨房裡有不同的石臼在磨不同品種的巧克力豆。當巧克力豆變成柔滑亮麗的巧克力漿之後, 研磨的過程就完成了。
The next step for the beans were to go into the stone grinders. A long time ago, when there was no machinery, the cocoa beans were also stone-ground, but it was all done by hands slowly. That was one of the many reasons why chocolate was such a luxurious item. When we got into the grinding room, Derek poured some beans into a freshly started stone grinder. He told us all of the grinders are grinding beans from different suppliers and some have started earlier simply to match their production schedule. Just like you see in the pictures, when the cocoa beans become a shiny silky smooth liquid, the grinding process is done.
在製作巧克力的過程中, 很多人沒有想到的就是巧克力有所謂的熟成這個步驟。研磨完的巧克力需要一段時間在溫度溼度都適中的環境中熟成。熟成是為了讓巧克力更有安定性且味道更一致。Derek帶我們看這些不同時間不同品種的巧克力, 有些已經熟成五個月, 也有些才剛放上架。
The next step is one of the most important step in chocolate-making yet most people have no idea about. The ground beans now need to rest in a humidity and temperature controlled area for days, weeks, sometimes up to months. This step ensures the stability and even flavor for the chocolate that is being produced later. Derek showed us all the bins of the chocolate resting on shelves, some have only just been put up, some have been quietly resting for 5 months.
熟成後這些純巧克力會以至少70%的濃度於粗糖混合, 當然對於不喜歡蔗糖的朋友們, 他們也有出幾款由楓葉糖漿製成的巧克力。Mast Brothers的巧克力堅持不加奶製品, 所有的產品都是高檔的黑巧克力喔。當然, 每一個品種的巧克力都經過仔細的實驗決定濃度, 有些帶點酸味, 有些帶點水果味, 還有一種非常特別帶炭烤味的。這些味道都是因為可可豆的產地及乾燥方式而產生的, 純天然, 無添加。巧克力一排一排定型完成後也是辛苦的由員工一個個手工包裝, 看到這裡, 有沒有感受到這個品牌的用心呢? 參觀完後, 我對巧克力的製作及品質有了深刻的瞭解, 也更能體會好巧克力是奢侈但是絕對值得一再回味的。下次來紐約, 若在任何店裡買到Mast Brothers巧克力, 也別忘了細細品嚐喔。
After resting, the cocoa would be mixed with pure cane sugar at the ratio of at least 7 to 3, making it a 70% dark chocolate, but the percentage vary depending on their recipes. For people who dislike cane sugar, they've also developed a few bars with maple syrup/sugar and they taste just as good. Mast brothers insist on adding no dairy to the chocolate, so every single slab you get from them will be high quality dark chocolate. Each type of chocolate bar has gone through lots of experiments to land on the perfect cocoa to sugar ratio. At the tasting table we find that some of them are particularly sour, some are slightly fruity and there was a very unique one that was smoky. The flavors differ because the origins of the beans vary, the ways the beans were dried by the manufacturers also vary. But all the flavors come from nature without additives.
Once the chocolate is properly mixed with the sugar, we saw the team pour the chocolate in molds with some finishing touches and let them set. Then another team would hand wrap these babies one by one. Their entire careful and sincere process just blows me away. I've learned so much about chocolate-making and the method to distinguish good chocolate from bad on this tour. I also finally understand why good chocolate is so expensive but unforgettable. Next time when you're in New York, or if you come across Mast Brothers Chocolate in stores, don't just chomp it down, give it respect and slowly let it melt in your mouth. They are sensational!
Mast Brothers Chocolate 111 N 3rd St Brooklyn, NY 11249 718.388.2625 http://mastbrothers.com/
小提醒: 有沒有發現廠裡的每一位員工都有帶帽子呢? 這當然是為了防止頭髮掉入巧克力中。參觀時沒有帶帽子的客人也會被要求戴上非常不好看的免洗帽。若打算要去參觀及試吃, 別忘了帶頂帽子吧!
A tip: Did you notice everyone at Mast Brothers was rocking a hat look? This is actually for sanitary purposes. If you decide to go on the tour and you went without a hat, you would be asked to wear one of the not stylish disposable caps. So if you've bought the tickets, don't forget to bring a hat!