August 15, 2012
COVENTRY, United KingdomMore good news for chocolate loversscientists have discovered a method to replace up to 50% of the fat content in chocolate with fruit juice. Even better news is the fact that the process does not take away the chocolatey mouthfeel given by the fatty ingredients, according to the study published in the Journal of Materials Chemistry.
Chemists at the University of Warwick removed much of the cocoa butter and milk fats that go into chocolate bars, substituting them with tiny droplets of juice measuring under 30 microns in diameter. They infused orange and cranberry juice into milk, dark and white chocolate using what is known as a Pickering emulsion, which prevents the small droplets from merging with each other.
The chocolate retains its mouthfeel because the new technique maintains the Polymorph V content, the substance in the crystal structure of the fat that gives chocolate its glossy appearance, firm and snappy texture, but also allows it to melt smoothly in the mouth.
Their chocolate formulations in the molten state showed a yield stress which meant that they could prevent the droplets from sinking to the bottom. The new process also prevents the unsightly sugar bloom that can appear on chocolate that has been stored for too long. The final product will taste fruity, but there is the option to use water and a small amount of ascorbic acid instead of juice to maintain a chocolatey taste.
The researchers said while their study looked at the chemistry behind reducing fat in chocolate, it is up to the food industry to use this new technique to develop tasty ways to use it in chocolate.
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