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Drinking Chocolate with Taha'a Vanilla Salt

Dark Chocolate is every bit as complex and satisfying as wine. Each cacao bean reflects the unique genetic heritage, terroir, growing conditions, and horticulture of the Theobroma cacao tree, and every cacao farmer and cacao buyer has a gastronomic perspective and level of skill that hugely influences the resulting chocolate. For this reason, eating a dark chocolate bar is one of the purest, most satisfying ways to experience the unbounded intricacies of chocolate itself.

Another way to experience the power and revel in the versatility of chocolate is to drink it. The history of drinking chocolate dates back to the deepest shadows of pre-civilization; for hundreds of years, and possibly for thousands, French, Spanish, Aztecs, and Olmecs have consumed it as a drink. When melted down, superbly crafted dark chocolate reaches its fullest expression. It is complex and stimulating; an entire jungle of Theobroma cacao chocolate trees spring up from your taste buds, revealing before you unexpected textural dimensions and infinitely varied flavors.

Choosing the bar is your opportunity for adventure. Let your imagination run free and your personal tastes deliver you into the wild. Nothing is off limits here; use your favorite dark or milk chocolate. Melt it down, stir in a finishing salt, like Taha'a Vanilla or Halen Mon Gold, and taste the beautifully deep flavor your favorite chocolate was destined for.  It's your turn to explore.

Serves 2

Ingredients:

Heat the water in a small saucepan over medium heat. Once the water begins to steam (you don't want it to boil), add in the chocolate and stir until melted.

Remove from heat, let thicken for 5 minutes, and then stir in salt. If desired, rim glass or mug with additional salt, then serve.

Recipe adapted from Salted: A Manifesto on the World’s Most Essential Mineral, with Recipes by Mark Bitterman