It's no secret, we LOVE really good chocolate — in all kinds of forms — here at Pretty Things & Cool Stuff (Just do a search on "chocolate").
When we travel, one of the things on our must-do list is to seek out and enjoy artisanal chocolate, as well as those from some of the world's most-respected chocolatiers. We also seek to learn as much as we can about this irresistible food that we turn to for everything from comfort and well being to joy and celebration.
If you're already a chocolate lover, chances are you'll be into cacao nibs, and we think you will love 5 Mile Chocolate's Cacao Nibs.
Touted as a superfood with more antioxidants the dark chocolate, 5 Mile Chocolate's Cacao Nibs are crisp, yet delicate, and chocolatey, but not sweet, as there is no sugar added.
They can be used in many ways from baked goods as a substitute for or together with chocolate chips and nuts. Try them in chocolate chip cookies, banana bread, granola, on ice cream, yogurt, oatmeal and more. 5 Mile Chocolate Cacao Nibs also are delicious in savory dishes, just grind them with a mortar and pestle or spice mill (or place in a bag and crush with a hammer or rolling pin) to use as crust for pork chops or steaks before searing them.
What exactly are cacao nibs?
They are bits of fermented, dried, roasted and crushed cacao beans. Start with the cacao plant, which grows pods filled with cacao beans. Take those beans and shell them, ferment them, dry them and roast them. Then, grind them up into crunchy, bitter intensely chocolate-tasting bits.
5 Mile Chocolate has a deep commitment to sourcing the highest quality, organic cacoa beans from sustainable farms throughout the world and to the craft of turning those beans into this incredibly yummy chocolate treats in small batches.
They also show their support for the hard work and deep, ongoing commitment to excellence and quality of the farmers they work with by paying them well above commodity and Fair Trade prices. And yes, we believe you can taste the return on that investment in every nib.
THE FINE DETAILS
Drive through the dramatic volcanic highlands of Guatemala towards the Pacific coast and land at Monte Grande, a family-owned farm near the border with Chiapas, Mexico.
The farm, which includes cacao, rubber, and palm, was purchased in 1867 by the Conde family with six gold coins. This region of Guatemala, known as “Costa Sur,” was historically the country’s center of cacao production and genetic research, but when prices dropped in the 1970s most cacao was abandoned.
Since 1984, the Conde family has been planting new varieties and propagating selected trees from the farm. Today, the cacao farm is 19 hectares and expanding with 11 hectares of seedlings grown in the farm’s own nursery designed for water conservation and multi-crop propagation.
Antonio Conde, 26 years old and a graduate of Earth University in Costa Rica, manages the farm on behalf of his family and seeks to replace as many of the farm’s former palm and rubber plots as possible with cacao agroforestry, setting an example for other estates in the region.
ABOUT 5 MILE CHOCOLATE
You have a right to know what is in your chocolate.
Your question, “What’s in my chocolate?” is at the crux of who we are at Five Mile Chocolate. The short answer is “cacao and organic sugar,” but you’re not really looking for the short answer, are you?
With roots in coffee and the sweeter side of the culinary world, we were enticed by the idea of building craft chocolate in Dallas — from the heart of the Oak Cliff neiborhood — not only as an opportunity for creation, but as an invitation to join an economy of good work.
5 Mile Chocolate believes that what's in your chocolate goes beyond the ingredients written on the package. It’s the mutual exchange and relationship that begins at the farm and extends to your hand. Because chocolate should be a treat. It should be trustworthy. That kind of chocolate transcends, creating something better.