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Large Chips

Ambanja

Madagascar

70 2018

Dandelion Chocolate

These beans come from Bertil Akesson’s Bejofo Estate. Bertil dries these beans with an especially quick method—on concrete beds under the hot Madagascar sun—that retains the beans’ acidity and results in a strong, fruity punch. The exact fruit flavor of the beans we buy from Bertil can vary from season to season, harvest to harvest, or even roast to roast.

In this new 2018 batch of Madagascar chips, we taste notes of pineapple, challah bread, and vanilla custard

Weighing in at a substantial 3.5 grams each, these single-origin chocolate chips are fashioned for bakers and home chocolatiers of all levels. They were modeled after the hand-piped chips our kitchen team used to make for the enormous cookies we serve in our cafés. Our large chips are fully tempered with a snappy, smooth, shiny finish—perfect for baking and making confections, from brownies and cookies to chocolate-dipped strawberries and homemade truffles.

Each bag has enough chips to make two batches of our Very Best Chocolate Chip Cookies, with a handful left over for nibbling. Find this recipe and others in our book, Making Chocolate: from Bean to Bar to S’more.

We want to thank our dear friend and talented industrial designer, Remy Labesque, for designing the molds for these unique chips for us.

If you are an aspiring chocolatier or a chocolate geek who wants to learn more about the chemistry of chocolate, these team blog posts dive deeper into tempering:

  • Pearl's lessons examine the six forms of chocolate and some unexpectedly beautiful swirled, bloomed chocolate.
  • Elman compares tempering chocolate by machine and by hand.
  • Lisa’s tips will have you hand-tempering chocolate bonbons and chocolate-dipped strawberries like a pro.
Ingredients & Allergens

All of our single-origin chocolate is made with just cocoa beans and sugar; no added coca butter, lechithin, or vanilla. Our chocolate is free of soy, dairy, eggs, and gluten, and it is made in a factory that does not process nuts.

Weight

NET WEIGHT

17.6 oz (500 g)
5.5 lb (2.5 kg)

Learn More

Learn more about our cocoa beans and sugar — the region, the farms, and the producers.

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Ambanja, Madagascar

The first full container of beans that Dandelion Chocolate purchased came from Bertil Akesson’s Bejofo Estate in Ambanja, Madagascar. The Estate has been growing cacao since 1920 and we bought our first container of these beans in 2012. Akessons 600 hectare Bejofo Estate, has trees that are up to 80 years old, and it is the largest single estate that we work with. Bertil’s operation is smooth and consistent. Every morning during harvest season, farmworkers cut down about 400 or so ripe pods each, crack them open, and move them quickly into fermentation boxes where they stay for six days. Fermenting them immediately after harvest is a crucial piece of quality control and Bertil focuses on ensuring this happens within hours. Once fermented the beans dry briefly in full sun on cement patios before being moved to elevated drying decks to slowly finish drying.

While it’s hard to know for certain, we believe this drying process is partially responsible for the flavor of the beans. We are proud to work with Bertil both because we love his beans and because we believe that he has paved the way for much of the development of specialty cacao that has happened in the last few years. The flavor of his beans change slightly every year but always have bright fruit and punchy acidity.

About the Shape

“When heated, they shine like glass but keep a recognizable shape and enviable texture.”

BLOOMBERG

Our friend Remy Labesque, senior industrial designer at Tesla Inc., designed these molds and unique faceted chips for us. The traditional chocolate chip shape is optimized for the industrial manufacturing process, not necessarily for baking. Our chocolate facets feature a flat, pyramidal shape that allows the chocolate to melt on your tongue, the recommended technique for tasting chocolate. The end result is a faceted chip that is ideal for both baking and nibbling.   

A little about us...

We Make Bean-to-Bar Chocolate

We're Dandelion, a bean-to-bar chocolate maker in San Francisco's Mission District. For over 10 years, we've been turning cocoa beans and organic sugar into single-origin dark chocolate. We’re part of the New American Chocolate Movement of small-scale chocolate makers building specialized machines and rethinking chocolate making practices to reclaim the depth of flavor in chocolate.

As a bean-to-bar maker, we first source our own beans, and then sort, roast, crack, winnow, melange, temper, and mold each bar we make. Our approach focuses on minimal ingredients, just cocoa beans and cane sugar (not vanilla, emulsifiers, or additional cocoa butter), so that the quality and flavor nuances of the bean shine through.

Just Two Ingredients.
That’s All.

Our chocolate bars are made of just two ingredients: cocoa beans and organic sugar. We don’t add cocoa butter, soy lecithin, vanilla, flavorings, or preservatives, so the quality and flavor nuances of our beans shine. With a light hand and minimalist approach, we aim to highlight different cocoa beans' distinctive flavor notes — from classic fudge to tangy fruit..

We Visit Each Origin to Build Lasting Relationships

When we look for cocoa beans, we look for good flavor and good people. Building trust is at the heart of what we do, and relationships are reciprocal. In addition to looking for good cocoa, we’re also interested in what our cocoa producers need from us — feedback on a new fermentation process, upfront capital to offset a bad season, or connections to other chocolate makers to grow business. Each year we publish the stories, numbers, and practices of our producers in our annual Sourcing Report.

We Work With Collaborators & Chocolatiers Worldwide

While chocolate makers make chocolate from cocoa beans, chocolatiers use finished chocolate to create truffles, bonbons, candy, and confections. Since we don’t add emulsifiers or additional cocoa butter to our chocolate, working with it requires extra time and attention. As a result, making truffles or chocolate-covered nibs with our chocolate can be especially challenging. Still, our collaborators remain undaunted, inventing new recipes and products each year. We celebrate their talents and share these crafted treats with you.

Join Our Virtual Classes to Experience Chocolate from a New Perspective

Our Chocolate Educators have been with the factory for many years, and share their perspectives on tasting single-origin chocolate, making treats at home, and experiencing chocolate in new ways. Our classes are available for individuals, families, and group events.

See Our
Chocolate-Making in
San Francisco

If you’re in San Francisco, we hope to soon invite you to stop by our café and factory in the Mission District to sip on a hot chocolate while watching our chocolate makers turn cocoa beans into bars of chocolate.