Today is the sweetest day of the year! World Chocolate Day is celebrated annually on July 11. Milk chocolate, dark chocolate, hot chocolate, chocolate cake… these decadent words are just music to our ears! We love everything about chocolate. Why do we love it so much, and is all chocolate the real chocolate?
“All you need is love. But a little chocolate now and then doesn't hurt.”
Imagine your life without chocolate. Horrible, right? Until the XVIth century, only the people of Mesoamerica knew what cacao trees were about. They believed the beans of such trees were divine in nature and that they were gifted to humans. The Aztecs, for example, traded goods for chocolate beans and drank chocolate during celebrations. Only in the XVIth century did the Europeans see chocolate for the first time. Adding natural sweeteners into the bitter chocolate made this heavenly gift widely popular.When the cocoa press was invented in Amsterdam in the XIXth century, it became possible to extract cocoa powder and cocoa butter and make the solid chocolate. In the second half of the XIXth century a Swiss chocolatier Daniel Peter added milk to make milk chocolate. Only by the XXth century chocolate became an affordable product. What a pity cocoa beans can only grow in equator countries!
Chocolate: I love you
Do you still feel guilty about having some dark chocolate? Do not worry. Scientists have proved hundreds of times that dark chocolate is rich in antioxidants. This means that consumption of dark chocolate can help prevent cognitive diseases, reduce the risk of heart problems, and lower cholesterol levels.
As you can see, the more percentage of cocoa a chocolate bar contains, the better for your health. What about milk chocolate? Many people prefer chocolate bars that contain a lot of additives, such as sugar and powdered milk. Although such chocolate might taste better, the health benefits of such indulgence are significantly lower than in the case of dark chocolate. When it comes to habits, if the Europeans prefer dark chocolate to its milk alternative, the Russians do the opposite, despite the fact that not everything about milk chocolate is sweet. In fact, the ingredients milk chocolate contains, such as sugar, hydrogenated oils, and fat, make it an unhealthy choice. Those who have a sweet tooth for milk chocolate risk having heart diseases, obesity, diabetes, and cancer.
Making the best chocolate choice with South Ural State University
Modern laboratories of South Ural State University enable young researchers to thoroughly examine the quality of chocolate. For over 20 years, the Department of Food Technology and Biotechnology of the School of Medical Biology has been nurturing highly-skilled specialists in the area of food industry management and food technology. The School’s students learn the methods and processes involved in food production and gain expertise in laboratory-based workshops and fieldwork. During their studies, students make experiments on food quality, including chocolate. Working in small groups, the future food specialists test different samples of chocolate to determine its content and safety. Apart from complicated chemical analyses, the samples go through the process of melting and dissolving in kerosene and acid. The work results in students making a proof-based report on whether the sampled chocolate is the real chocolate. Another important skill students learn is how to determine the reason behind the brown-coloured chocolate (milk chocolate or dark chocolate) turning white and whether it is edible nonetheless.
Let’s talk about food quality
“There is no love sincerer than the love of food.”
If you choose to study food technology and biotechnology at the School of Medical Biology of South Ural State University, it is not only the nature of chocolate you will master. You will become an innovator in the world of food who is able to create products of better quality, whether they are plant- or animal-based. The huge product range means the need for food specialists is skyrocketing. To produce healthy and tasty food, the world needs those who can understand production processes and product properties and how they affect the human body. At South Ural State University you can learn about the chemical and biological food composition and discover the world of nutrition, health, and taste. High-tech laboratories, experienced professors, and culturally diverse environment will all contribute to your future successful career in the food industry. From process engineering to food technology to food innovation to food safety - your career possibilities become endless with South Ural State University!