Chocolat – The book of a Sweet Passion
Author: Alessandra Sophia Manna

Publication date: November 27, 2020
Language: German


This exciting non-fiction book on chocolate explains everything worth knowing from the cultivation of the cocoa bean to its processing and is embedded in a literary framework. 12 special recipes by prominent chefs such as Andreas Döllerer complete the book.

Chocolate is one of the world’s most seductive luxury foods, no kitchen in the world can do without. It originated in South America and came to Europe via Mexico.

The master confectioner Alexandra Sophia Manna from Valais has already succumbed to the taste of chocolate in her childhood, in her parents’ bakery. In her book Chocolat – The Book of a Sweet Passion, she sets out from Switzerland on a journey through the world to unveil its secrets.

How and where is cocoa cultivated, harvested, processed, and refined into chocolate? What other staple foods are needed to make it? Which countries prefer which varieties? What does chocolate made from camel’s milk, a specialty from the Arabian region, taste like? What can you cook with chocolate – except for desserts, cakes, and the fine patisserie? The author has invited prominent chefs with 12 creations and presents these recipes in the book.

One chapter is dedicated to the history of “Xocolatl”, another to its health aspects. The most famous chocolate brands are also presented.

With beautiful photos, bound in leather, and with a dust jacket, this book is a comprehensive work on the “food of the gods”, which has been triumphant throughout the world from Mexico since the 16th century, making it a little bit better, and continues to do so.

[…] The famous Aztec ruler Montezuma II, dressed in jaguar fur, had the cocoa delivered twice a year under the quantity specification “load capacity” – this corresponded to a woven basket with a content of about 8,000 cocoa beans. At that time, a carrier was able to deliver three times the load capacity, i.e. 24,000 beans. For the Aztecs, the basis was not the so-called decimal system, but the unit of 20 (10 fingers and 10 toes), which resulted in counting units of 400 (zontli) and 8000 (xiquipli). This led to the linguistic development of the cocoa drink into “Xocolatl”, from which our word chocolate is derived. In Tenochtitlan, the capital of the Aztecs, there was now a flourishing trade in cocoa. Christopher Columbus was the first European to have his encounter with cocoa beans around 1502. But it was only Hernán Cortés, the conqueror of Mexico, who told his emperor Charles V about the special status of the cocoa fruit at the court of Montezuma. Again, it was a Spanish Jesuit named José de Acosta (1590), who, unlike many of his colleagues, did not describe Indian cultural assets as pagan mumbo jumbo and themselves as lazybones. He wrote one of the earliest scientific reports on cocoa and also discussed the importance of cocoa as a means of payment. […]

HM-Chocolate publishing house


ISBN 978-3-9504892-3-1

Alessandra Sophia Manna

27.5 cm (h) x 21.5 cm (w)

Bound, with ribbon, embossed leather cover, dust jacket

252 pages with numerous color photographs

Retail Price:
45,36 € (excl. value-added tax)