Cacao fruits on tree

Title Info
Common name Cacao or chocolate
Scientific name Theobroma cacao
Taxonomic group Sterculiaceae
Source Dan L. Perlman
Economic botany Food plants
Food plants Other
Date 1985
Location Costa Rica,North America
Cacao fruits on tree, <i>Theobroma cacao</i>
Related materials: Cacao

Cacao fruits. Chocolate is made from the fruit of the cacao plant, a small understory tree originally from the New World tropics. As can be seen here, the fruits grow directly from the trunk of the tree. Once the beans are harvested from the fruits, they are fermented by bacteria and yeast for several days, then dried, roasted, and ground into a thick liquid called chocolate liquor. To make a chocolate bar, sugar, milk and additional cocoa butter (fat extracted from the chocolate liquor) are then added.. Chocolate contains the alkaloid theobromine, which is very similar to caffeine in structure.