History of Chocolate in Early New England with Historic Deerfield: “Breakfasting on Chocolate: An Open-Hearth Cooking Demonstration

Date: February 3, 2021
Time: 6:30pm - 7:30pm


Pricing: Free for Historic Deerfield members. For non-members, the price is $10 each session or $25 for all three
Phone: 4137757214
Website (click here)
Historic Deerfield
80 Old Main Street
Deerfield, MA 01342

Wednesdays, January 6, January 20, and February 3, 2021

6:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

There’s nothing better than chocolate – especially on a cold winter’s evening. This multipart program explores the impact of chocolate, first introduced into the colonial American diet in the late 17th century. A series of short lectures and interactive question sessions include information on the introduction of the beverage to Europe and its social, military, and medicinal uses, the botanical nature of the cacao plant, how chocolate was processed and prepared, and what we know about the use of chocolate in Deerfield, Massachusetts. All sessions are approximately 45 minutes long with an opportunity for questions and answers at the end.

Session 1: January 6, 2021

“Warming Winter’s Chill: A Brief History of Chocolate,” with Amanda Lange, Curatorial Department Director and Curator of Historic Interiors, Historic Deerfield

Learn about the history of chocolate from the Amazon rainforest to the breakfast tables of London and Boston. Topics include the introduction of chocolate to Europe, chocolate as an early medicine, the beverage’s use for breakfast and portable energy for the military, as well as the equipment needed to prepare and serve chocolate

Session 2: January 20, 2021

“Chocolate Pies and Little Flies: The Botany of Cacao,” with Faith Deering, Museum Educator, Historic Deerfield

Learn more about the unusual and wonderful cacao tree. Participants will find out where the chocolate tree grows, how it is pollinated, and how chocolate is prepared in today’s factories from bean to bar.

Session 3: February 3, 2021

“Breakfasting on Chocolate: An Open-Hearth Cooking Demonstration,” with Ellen Zale, Hearth Cook, and “A Cup of Chocolate in 1771,” with Claire Carlson, Education Program Coordinator, Historic Deerfield

Learn from Ellen Zale how to prepare an 18th-century cup of hot chocolate over the hearth in the Hall Tavern North Kitchen. Using the American Heritage® recipe, especially created by Mars Wrigley for historic sites, Ellen will scrape, mix, and froth a hearty cup of chocolate for breakfast. Claire Carlson discusses the consumption of chocolate in Deerfield using evidence and information gleaned from local account books, probate inventories, and diaries.

This program will be presented live via Zoom webinar. The link to the webinar will be sent to registrants prior to the event. Webinars will be recorded and available to registrants for viewing for two weeks after the live event.

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