January 24, 2020

Beer froths into one type of mousse...not the point of this post. "Brasserie" [Brewery], engraved by Robert Benard, in Receuil de Planches, "Brasserie," Plate II, 1763.

If you were royalty, you’d worry about being poisoned. If you believed you were a divine incarnation,...

December 20, 2019

Over the past two months, we have explored chocolate consumption before 1820, when preindustrial science made producing anything solid with cacao very difficult. Once broken, shelled, roasted, and ground into a paste, the cacao bean’s structure acts according to its com...

November 22, 2019

This post asks the question, why don’t Dr. Frankenstein or Count Dracula drink chocolate?

Let’s get this out of the way: Franken Berry and Count Chocula hit the shelves in 1971. While Chocula may have inspired this inquiry, he does not figure into our story.

First, an inv...

November 1, 2019

Roundabout Halloween the sale of chocolate candy in the US soars. No one will give tricks. Children will reportedly net several pounds of treats per (pumpkin) head on their routes. That amount of sugary chocolate sets off alarms: for parents they sound panic, while for...

December 7, 2018

Limonadier, ière. Marchand qui vend de la limonade, de la liqueur et plusieurs autres sortes de liqueur, comme eaux de cerises, verjus, groseilles, framboise, du sorbet, de l’orangeade, etc.

–Antoine Furetière, Le Dictionnaire universel, 1690

Merchant who sells hard lemon...

September 15, 2018

If England had reached the southern New World before Spain, Portia’s Merchant suitors might have wisely chosen against the casket with cacao in it. Olivia’s uncle, Sir Toby Belch would re-tune the suggestion that virtue meant no more cakes and chocolate (Twelfth Night,...

June 1, 2018

The European Chocolate Cup

Mancerina i xícara*

Alcora Manufactory, tin-glazed earthenware, mid-18th century. Reproduces the fashion of the 17th-century Spanish saucer--which held the cup in metal lattice--with beaker reminiscent of a gourd.

Courtesy of the Museu de Ceràmi...

May 1, 2018

The European Chocolate Pot or Chocolatière

"This is the same chocolaty pottes that are mayd in the Indis"

 Pot and molinillo (molinet, or dowel for whipping chocolate) depicted by Lady Ann Fanshawe in her family cookbook atop a recipe "to dresse Chocolata," from Madrid, 1...

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