How much chocolate do Americans eat? The average American consumes approximately 11.7 pounds of chocolate each year.
What is that white stuff on my chocolate? Chocolate contains cocoa butter, a vegetable fat that is sensitive to heat and humidity. Temperatures above 75 degrees will cause chocolate to melt. The cocoa butter can rise to the surface and form a grayish discoloration called "cocoa butter bloom." Condensation on milk or semi-sweet chocolate may cause sugar to dissolve and rise to the surface as "sugar bloom." Neither "bloom" affects the quality or flavor of chocolate.
How much caffeine is in chocolate? The level of caffeine in chocolate (6 mg per 1 oz. of milk chocolate) is low when compared to the level in coffee, tea and some soft drinks.
Chocolate kept in the refrigerator may sweat when brought to room temperature and may not melt properly.
The shelf life of chocolate is generally a year. Ingredients such as nuts will shorten the shelf life. Chocolate kept beyond 1 year may suffer flavor loss or texture changes.
Solid chocolate products will maintain their freshness if well wrapped and stored in a cool, dry place (55-60 degrees F).
Cocoa is considered a non-perishable item, which should maintain freshness if stored at room temperature in a tightly sealed container.
Chocolate candy should be mixed thoroughly into batter or dough to protect it from the direct heat of baking.