We will answer all your questions regarding the qualities of Dutch-process cocoa brands and uses of this type of cocoa powder. Essentially, cocoa powder is from dry remains of dried, fermented, and roasted cocoa beans into cocoa nibs. Afterward, squeezed to remove the cocoa butter, and the remaining pastry liquor is dried. Then, ground to make it into pure unsweetened cocoa powder. Dutch-process cocoa powder, Dutch or European style, has a more mellow taste and smoother texture.
Dutch-process Cocoa Powder vs. Natural Cocoa Powder?
Dutch-process cocoa powder is merely acidic because of the Dutching process. It is wherein an alkaline solution of potassium is used to wash the cocoa beans to neutralize the acidity to a pH of 7. Also, the Dutch process provides the cocoa powder a darker shade even though cocoa powders have various colors starting at light reddish-brown to dark brown.
On the contrary, natural cocoa powder is acidic and bitter and comes from roasted cocoa beans, most of the fat removed. It works best with baking soda since both of them react with each other to enable the baked goods to rise. Likewise, there is no leavening involved in the process. Make sure to select the best quality of natural cocoa powder because it maintains the original taste of the cacao beans. However, the opposite would add a much strong flavor to the baked goods.
Is It Preferable to Use Baking Powder Instead of Baking Soda with Dutch-process Cocoa Powder?
Dutch-process cocoa powder and baking powder are the perfect pair because you no longer need to neutralize its acidity. Baking powder is a mixture of baking soda and cornstarch. It is double acting, so the first reaction happens when mixed with liquid to aerate the dough or batter. The second reaction takes place gradually when heated inside the oven. Unlike baking soda wherein you will not get as much leavening effect. Also, Dutch-process cocoa powder and baking soda will not react with one another.
Which Brands of Cocoa are Dutch-process?
Droste is not as alkalized as black cocoa but still has a deeper flavor than regular cocoa. Droste, produced in the Netherlands, is rich with flavors, so sweet, and has red shades due to the cocoa. Rodelle Baking cocoa is a Dutch-processed that gives a sweet smell and has a rich deep flavor. Also, it has a more fudgy taste than ordinary unsweetened cocoa and is ideal when using vanilla extract. Using this brand of Dutch-process cocoa powder results in an abundant chocolate flavor and is best served on special occasions.
Frontier natural’s black cocoa is incredibly smooth in texture and very delicious. Perfect in making dark chocolate cakes since black cocoa has an exceedingly dark cocoa powder. It is organic and free of fertilizers and pesticides. Valrhona is a top-quality cocoa that is smooth and less bitter. A French company produced it and recommended by a lot of cookbook authors and professional bakers today.
The best way to know it your purchased cocoa powder is a Dutch-process one. Check for the words on the packaging like European style, alkalized, or cocoa processed with alkali and Dutched.