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  • Dec 23

    Gift of the Gods: Chocolate in the Aztec Empire

    By Cocoa Runners  ·  History & Culture

    In Aztec accounts, the historico-mythical ruler Topiltzin Quetzalcoatl, conceived from a piece of jade, is said to have been the one who brought cocoa to central Mexico. Alternatively, the cocoa tree is said to have been taken from a sacred mountain by the feathered-serpent deity Quetzalcoatl himself, who gifted it to the people and taught […]

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  • Dec 20

    Why we should wish one another a “jolly” Christmas …with chocolate yuletide logs and dark chocolates:

    By Cocoa Runners  ·  History & Culture

    As you select from our range of craft chocolate Christmas gifts (see below for some highlights), we’ve also done a little research on why we gift chocolate, starting with why Christmas is a time of gifts, before exploring the links between Napoleon and chocolate yuletide logs and St. Nicholas and chocolate coins. Why do we […]

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  • Nov 25

    Thanksgiving: More than Black Friday

    By Cocoa Runners  ·  History & Culture

    As we rapidly approach the holiday season, we know you are going to be bombarded by the likes of Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and a whole host of other commercially engineered ‘holiday deals’. If you are American, you are fortunate to be able to celebrate Thanksgiving before this onslaught. Thanksgiving is in many ways the perfect sort […]

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  • Nov 25

    From Fasting to Savouring; Advent Calendars and Figgy Puddings

    By Cocoa Runners  ·  History & Culture

    Although we now associate Advent (and advent calendars) with Christmas and treats, Advent was first celebrated by monks in late 5th Century France, fasting in the run up to Christmas. After a few twists and turns, Advent is now celebrated in very different ways. It’s been commercialised. There are advent calendars costing over $1m! And, […]

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  • Oct 25

    Treats for Halloween (with No Tricks)

    By Cocoa Runners  ·  History & Culture

    What is associated with the colour orange (and increasingly black, purple and even green), celebrated on the 31st October, emerged out of “guising”, “mumming” and “souling”, is second only to Christmas as a commercial holiday (in the US alone $6bn is apparently spent), and one where over 20% of millennials are now dressing up their […]

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  • Sep 22

    We love you Belgium, but…

    By Cocoa Runners  ·  History & Culture

    Belgian chocolate has quite the reputation. It likes to claim various titles ranging from “best chocolate in the world” and “the homeland of our favourite sweet treat”. Just seeing the word ‘Belgian’ on a label encourages some consumers to believe they are purchasing a luxury product, hailing from a land where the streets are paved […]

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  • Sep 05

    How to Drink Hot Chocolate According to Three Fictional Characters

    By Cocoa Runners  ·  History & Culture

    Chocolate bars are a rather recent invention, dating back to just 1847 when Fry and Sons launched their solid moulded chocolate. We’ve been drinking the stuff for a lot longer. No surprise then that hot chocolate turns up in various literary classics. How Many People Does It Take To Make A Cup of Cocoa? For […]

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  • Sep 03

    We Need Chocolate Teen Fiction!

    By Cocoa Runners  ·  History & Culture

    Chocolate for breakfast.Chocolate for lunch.Chocolate for dinner.Chocolate for brunch. Although I’m not sure that this is quite what doctors have in mind when they advocate a balanced diet, it is certainly a childhood dream. Chocolate at every meal, mountains of chocolate, rivers of the stuff. Chocolate bars, cakes, ice cream. Éclairs, hot chocolate, even chocolate […]

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  • Sep 03

    How Chocolate Is Made, the Willy Wonka Way

    By Cocoa Runners  ·  History & Culture

    It’s hard to imagine how a knobbly, shiny, multicoloured pod becomes a beautiful, smooth, easy-to-eat bar. Who better to glean the industry secrets from than the man who makes bars, ‘far sweeter and creamier and more delicious than anything the other chocolate factories can make!’. Mr Willy Wonka himself! The cacao bean,’ Mr Wonka continued, […]

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  • Sep 03

    Weapon of Choice: Chocolate

    By Cocoa Runners  ·  History & Culture

    There have been studies that suggest that dark chocolates with a high cocoa content (like those here at Cocoa Runners) have numerous health benefits. Furthermore, chocolate contains caffeine and theobromine, both of which boost your energy. Because of this and more, chocolate was used to ‘fuel’ soldiers throughout wars in history. Early Wars Chocolate consumption […]

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