I have a huge Carob tree in my yard, I love the tree and for years I have dumped hundreds of pounds of carob in the green barrel not know what to do with it. The tree really produces a lot of carob pods. This season I collect about 50 lbs. thinking I would do something with it. I finally got around to working with my large supply of carob pods. If you don't know what carob is, I will tell you. It is a chocolate substitute. I have friends and family members that cannot eat chocolate and use carob instead. Actually my wife for years has made no bake cookies with carob powder. It can be great if it done well and sweetened up enough. So here is my adventure in Making Carob Powder.
|My Carob Tree, it's huge.|
|This is what carob pod looks like before it falls to the ground for me to clean up.|
There are the carob pods. About 3 inches long and flat. Filled with seeds. So the first thing I did was rinse them off with hot water. I started with a couple of pounds.
Next I placed them in a pressure cooker and covered them with water. Cooked in a pressure cooker for 12 minutes on high. Let the pressure come down naturally. Meaning that just them cool down in the cooker.
12 minutes on high in a pressure cooker.
Notice how dark they are and the dark water. The pressure cooker loosens them up so you can get the seeds out. WIth out that they are impossible to get out. Hard as a rock and filled with seeds. It is the pod that turns to carob, not the seed.
|Pods and seeds. The pods are really sticky, I use latex gloves.|
After much trial and error, I found the best way was to have a sharp small knife to cut them open with. After I cut them open I scraped the seeds from the inside and placed them on a parchment lined cookie sheet.
These are the pods after they have been baked in the oven. The oven dries them out and toasts them. They are really good dry and toasted. Amazing what 20 minutes does for them in the oven. This step is important.
|The seeds, they are used for other things,|
That is another blog.
After the seeds are cooled and dried out I placed them in a blender. It needs to be a high powered blender. I used my Vita Mix. Just add the dried out pods and let the blender do it's magic.
The blender makes a really fine powder out of the baked toasted seeded carob pods. You can see the fine powder. Once it is blended I sifted the powder to get out any bigger pieces that did not blend. Not much was left that the Vita Mix did not pulverize.
The finished product. The most wonderful toasted carob powder I have had. I made some chocolate bars and coco. Great stuff. I enjoyed the experience. Good thing because I have about 50 lbs. left to do.
I love doing new things. This was something I have wanted to do for years. It was inspiring and very educational to say the least. I love doing things that are educational and in the process I can help others. Food is an adventure to say the least. Chef Brad~America's Grain Guy