Ah, chocolates! We all love them. What we don’t love is when we’re eagerly opening a pack of chocolate only to find out it’s… white? And we start wondering, “Why does my chocolate look moldy and whitish?”
Should we throw it away?
Can it be mold?
Well, we’re here to tell you otherwise.
The good news is that chocolate doesn’t spoil.
It is, however, immune to changes. Heat and moisture can cause chocolate to lose its luster and become whitish. This can be unappealing to some people, even making them suspect the chocolate is injurious.
Please fear not; here’s what you need to know about its safe consumption.
Why does Chocolate Turn White and Moldy?
Sometimes, chocolate can develop a white film on its surface. This is a common occurrence known as “chocolate bloom.” While it may not be the most aesthetically pleasing sight, you can still eat it.
Chocolate bloom is a scientific process in which the fat or sugar in chocolate crystallizes and rises to the surface.
However, chocolate blooming differs from mold, which can also appear on chocolate and be harmful if consumed. ‘Chocolate bloom” is simply a cosmetic issue caused by factors such as moisture and heat, which alter chocolate’s fat and sugar molecules.
Mold, on the other hand, has a fuzzy texture and is green in color.
Chocolate bloom can be of two types:
This type of bloom occurs when chocolate is exposed to warm temperatures. It causes the cocoa butter to soften and rise to the surface. This results in a grayish or white streaked appearance on the chocolate.
The streaks can be present on the surface of the chocolate. They can also develop throughout the bar. Eventually, this can cause the chocolate to lose its shine. Factors contributing to fat bloom include improper storage, changes in temperature, or a poor tempering process.
Sugar Bloom occurs when chocolate is exposed to moisture, such as high humidity or refrigeration. Moisture causes the sugar content in the chocolate to evaporate. It forms large sugar crystals on the surface.
This results in a crystallized or dusty appearance on the chocolate. It gives the chocolate a white and chalky look.
How Tempering Causes Chocolate Bloom?
Tempering is a crucial process in chocolate making. It involves melting, cooling, and then reheating chocolate to specific temperatures. It’s done to achieve the desired texture, appearance, and snap. However, improper tempering can cause chocolate to bloom.
It involves the crystallization of the cocoa butter in the chocolate, which gives the chocolate its texture and shine. Cocoa butter is polymorphic. This means that cocoa butter can take on many crystal forms when it goes from liquid oil to crystallized solid fat.
If the chocolate is not tempered correctly, the cocoa butter crystals can become unstable and rise to the surface. This can cause chocolate to bloom.
That’s why following the proper tempering techniques and temperatures is essential. It’s also the reason why chocolate is recommended to be stored in a cool, dry place.
Can You Fix Chocolate Blooming?
As a reader, your next question would be: Okay, how do I fix chocolate bloom once it’s taken over my chocolate?
Well, it’s simple.
Here’s a fix that doesn’t involve throwing away your chocolate stash.
To fix the chocolate bloom, you simply need to reincorporate the fat or sugar back into the chocolate. Here’s how you can do this:
- First, melt the chocolate down in a double boiler or microwave.
- Once the chocolate has melted, give it a good stir to ensure the fat or sugar is evenly distributed.
- Next, transfer the chocolate into a mold or onto a piece of parchment paper.
- Let it re-harden at room temperature.
Once the chocolate has re-hardened, it should return to its original smooth and shiny texture. This will get rid of any signs of bloom.
Please remember that this process only works for fat-bloomed chocolate.
Unfortunately, sugar-bloomed chocolate will be irreversibly grainy. But don’t worry. You can still use it for baking or making other treats that require chocolate.
You can melt the sugar-bloomed chocolate and use it for chocolate ganache or hot chocolate. You can also use it to make brownie batter and chocolate bark. The possibilities are endless!
Can Chocolate Bloom Alter the Taste of Your Chocolate?
You must have wondered if chocolate bloom affects the taste of your favorite chocolate treats.
The good news is, it doesn’t. The blooming process does not affect the flavor or shelf life of the chocolate in any way.
While some people might prefer not to eat bloomed chocolate due to its altered appearance, throwing it away is unnecessary. You can still indulge in your bloomed chocolate without any worry about its taste.
Another way is to repurpose bloomed chocolate by melting it and using it in baking.
So, the next time you come across a batch of bloomed chocolate, remember it’s still delicious. Just think of it as an opportunity to get creative in the kitchen and make some tasty treats!
Can you Consume Chocolate if it’s Bloomed?
While chocolate bloom doesn’t affect the taste or safety of the chocolate, it does change its appearance. If you’ve made it this far into the article, we bet you’ve come across bloomed chocolate.
It looks funny.
But it’s completely edible.
Try it as a fun activity with friends if you don’t want to take the risk alone. It may have a slightly different texture. Flavor-wise, it should be just as delicious as ever. So give it a try! You may just discover a new and unusual treat.
How can you Differentiate Between Chocolate Bloom and ACTUAL Mold?
We know we said earlier that chocolate couldn’t spoil. However, if left open for long periods, it can develop mold.
So, how can you tell the difference?
It can be difficult to tell the difference between bloom and mold. But there are some key things to look out for.
In most cases, what you think is mold on your chocolate is just blooming. It’s whitish. Unlike mold, which has a distinctly fuzzy, hairy, spongy, or spotty appearance, bloom often appears more uniform. It’s also slick to the touch.
If you’re dealing with moldy chocolate, you’ll see signs of actual mold growing on the surface of the chocolate. The mold that grows on chocolate and other wet surfaces is green in color.
That’s your clue to throw out your chocolate! That being said, it’s extremely rare for chocolate to get moldy if it’s not filled with perishable ingredients like creams or truffles.
Milk chocolate is more susceptible to mold as compared to dark chocolate. It has high levels of sugar, which can facilitate mold growth if exposed to water or humidity. So, if you’re ever unsure whether you’re dealing with blooms or mold on your chocolate, remember that actual mold growth is a rare occurrence.
How to Prevent Chocolate from Turning White and Looking Moldy?
Are you tired of finding a bloom in your chocolate? Do you keep throwing it out, thinking it’s mold?
Allow us to help. Improper storage can lead to a loss of flavor, texture, and appearance. That’s why we have curated a list of tips on how you can store chocolate:
Use an Airtight Container.
Cocoa butter absorbs nearby flavors, so storing chocolate in an airtight container is a good idea. It’ll help preserve the flavor integrity of your chocolate. It’ll also block out oxygen and avoid oxidation.
Avoid exposure to Light.
Both sunlight and artificial light induce oxidation. This process can change the appearance and flavor of your chocolate. One example of this is Ruby chocolate. It loses its sought-after pink hue when exposed to direct light. So, keep your chocolate away from light to preserve its appearance and taste.
Keep it in a Cool and Dry Place.
Heat and moisture can cause blooming. We recommend that you keep your chocolate in a cool, dry environment. A good measure is to store it in a place with humidity lower than 55%. The recommended temperatures range between 68-72°F (20-22°C). It’ll keep the emulsion of cocoa butter and cocoa solids shelf-stable.
Don’t Refrigerate Chocolate.
It sounds weird. But hear us out.
If you want to serve chocolate, don’t refrigerate it. Moisture in the refrigerator can cause sugar to bloom. It can also reduce the aesthetic appeal of your chocolate. Chocolate also absorbs aromas, so storing it in the fridge can affect flavor. It’s best to store it in a cool and dry pantry.
If you want to keep chocolate in the refrigerator, ensure it’s properly packaged in an air-tight jar.
Freeze your Chocolate.
The freezer can extend the flavor and aroma quality of your chocolate. On the downside, it can also induce bloom due to changing temperatures and moisture. Therefore, only use this method if you’re planning to melt your chocolate.
Use a Wine Fridge to Ship Chocolate.
If you want to ship chocolate, use a wine fridge. It’ll keep it cold without causing sugar crystals to bloom. We recommend sealing the chocolate before placing it in the wine fridge. This will prevent cross-flavor absorption.
Freezing and Defrosting Chocolate
Nothing’s more heartbreaking than defrosting chocolate and losing all its texture. To prevent this, move the chocolate to the refrigerator for 24 hours before adding it to your freezer. When it comes to defrosting your chocolate, go slow.
Refrigerate your chocolate for 24 hours. Then, let it come to room temperature before unwrapping it. This will prevent blooming, as well as loss of texture.
What temperature causes chocolate to bloom?
Chocolate blooms at temperatures higher than 70-75°F (21-24°C). This can occur due to the cocoa butter in the chocolate rising to the surface and crystallizing. The result is an undesirable appearance.
What happens if I eat moldy chocolate?
It depends on the kind of mold you’re referring to. If you eat white mold or chocolate bloom, nothing will happen. As it’s not molding but rather a cosmetic change.
Green mold, on the other hand, should not be consumed. It can cause various health problems, including allergic reactions, respiratory issues, and even poisoning. Monitor your symptoms closely to see if you accidentally consumed mold on chocolate or any food. Seek medical attention if necessary.
It’s better to be cautious. Dispose of chocolate if you spot any green mold on it to prevent potential health risks.
Can mold grow on white chocolate?
The simple answer is “no.”
Due to white chocolate’s low moisture content, it’s nearly impossible for white chocolate to support any mold growth. Mold needs water to survive. White chocolate contains very little moisture, making it an unsuitable environment for mold to grow.
However, white chocolate can bloom if it comes into contact with water or humidity. To avoid this, store your white chocolate in an airtight container.
Can fungus grow on chocolate?
Chocolate can only have fungus or mold if it is exposed to moisture. It’s rare for chocolate to become moldy or grow fungus if it is stored properly and wrapped well. Solid chocolate bars, sealed in their original packaging, rarely go moldy.
However, humidity or being in contact with water can cause chocolate to become moldy. It is important to store chocolate in a cool, dry place to prevent this.
In conclusion, the chocolate bloom is nothing to be scared of. It’s safe to eat and can be used to create delicious recipes! We hope that this article has addressed all the myths about chocolate mold. Now that you know about the safety of your favorite chocolate, it’s time to test it out!
So, next time you see a white or grayish film on your chocolate, don’t toss it out just yet. Give it a taste! Enjoy the delectable taste that you crave and love. And to prevent chocolate from blooming in the future, make sure to follow our tips.