The grinder soaps up

It is to this wooden utensil, used as a whisk, that we owe the thick foam that forms on the surface of hot chocolates.

His story

Cocoa has always held an important place in Mexican culture. It was the Mesoamerican peoples – Olmecs, Mayans and Aztecs – who first domesticated and cultivated the cacao tree. In the era of pre-Columbian civilizations, the cocoa bean was used as currency. At the same time, cocoa powder, diluted in water and mixed with chili pepper and achiote, the fruit of an endemic bush, gave rise to an increasingly popular drink, chocolate.

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” In the Florentine Codex, a 16th century manuscriptme century, explains Carlos Moreno, chef from the state of Tabasco, expatriate in France, there are representations of Aztec priests drinking cocoa in a gourd, This small wooden vase is handmade from the bark of the fruit of the gourd tree. On the surface of the drink an aerial foam was formed, thechocolate Foam, which symbolized power and fertility. » Today, to create this thick layer of foam, we use the molinillo, a wooden tool adorned with rings that is used as a whip.

its use

On the pink tiled countertop of the Comer kitchen, which is about to open rue d’Hauteville (Paris 10me), Carlos Moreno is working on the preparation of a Mexican hot chocolate according to the traditional method. In a clay bowl, he pours a homemade infusion made up of water, cocoa powder and melted dark chocolate, which he has previously garnished with vanilla, allspice and cinnamon.

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He then holds the handle of the grinder vertically between his palms while the head of the grooved wooden tool is held on the surface of the liquid, half submerged. As if he wanted to light a fire by friction, Carlos Moreno turns the utensil. The first bubbles form on contact with air. After five minutes, the foam protrudes from the container in the form of a cumulonimbus cloud. In the mouth, the chocolate bubbles burst on the tip of the tongue, carrying with them the woody notes of a delicious perfume with a persistent and authentic flavor.

Michoacan grinder34 cm, My Little Shop, €10.

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