Phillip Minton M.D.

Bubbly Chocolate

In chocolate on October 15, 2011 at 11:44 pm

Although chocolate and bubbly, and by that I mean champagne, have famously been companions for many years, a new phenomenon has recently developed. It is the combination of bubbles with chocolate. It involves infusing chocolate with bubbles of air or other gases, to produce a lighter chocolate confection.

Confectioners of all types are jumping on the bubbly chocolate bandwagon. Their reason? A read of the major chocolate manufacturer’s sales material reveals that it is to allow for a more flavorful eating experience. The theory being that flavor from chocolate is released to our senses primarily as the chocolate melts in the mouth, and that adding bubbles aids the melting process. My guess is that it has as much to do with marketing theory as it does with chocolate taste theory. It may be that the chocolate manufacturers simply want to have something new to offer the chocolate-loving public. It may simply be the newest fad in chocolate confections.

But how does it effect the health properties of chocolate. Once again touching on theory, it is plausible that the bubbles could potentially effect the antioxidants and fats found in chocolate confections. Why? Just think about how chocolates are usually delivered to the consumer. Most commonly, it is either off a rack of freshly made chocolates, or in air-tight sealed packages. The reason is that the oxygen in the air damages most foods, including chocolates, by oxidizing them. If the bubbles in chocolate confections contain oxygen, such as bubbles of normal atmospheric air, then there will be a question of controlling this oxidative effect. From my perusal of a few packages of chocolate candy bars containing bubbles, I gather that even though chocolate itself contains an array of powerful natural antioxidants, other additional antioxidants are being added. If you want to learn more about oxidation of chocolate, or how healthy chocolates differ from candy, be sure to read my upcoming blog posts.

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