The Secret Life of Chocolate is a book about chocolate. Not the sweet, mass-produced fatty confection most of us are familiar with, though. TSLOC is about old-school chocolate; pre-Colombian, Central American, bitter-spicy-foamy-intense blow-your-socks-off chocolate. Chocolate beverages made with roasted beans, water, spices, and indigenous plants.
Today there are many different forms of drinking chocolate in Latin America, most of which reflect European (Spanish) influence, incorporating sugar, cinnamon, and milk. The aim of this work is to peel back the years of cultural cross-pollination and find out more about the original Cacao-based beverages, which were richer, more complex, more potent, and darker (sometimes in every sense) than modern forms of chocolate.
So TSLOC delves into the ancient history of the human relationship with the cocoa tree, Theobroma cacao; it dissects the pharmacological properties of chocolate to the fullest possible extent; and it divulges the mythical and magical associations of human interactions with this incredible plant.
TSLOC began in 2006, and is due for publication in 2020.
S.1: Chocolate Roots
Ch.1, A Potted History of Chocolate
Ch.2, Bodies of Chocolate
S.2: Medicinal Chocolate
Ch.3, The Chocolate Apothecary
Ch.4, Pharmaceutical Chocolate
Ch.5, Chocolate, Love, & Bondage, pt.1
Ch.6, Associates and Accomplices
Ch.7, Chocolate, Love, & Bondage, pt.2
Ch.8, Chocolate Formulary
S.3: Metaphysical Chocolate
Ch.9, The dark side of Venus
Ch.10, Death by Chocolate