The chocolate galaxy

The joys of milk flakes, chew bars and energy balls are the stuff of dreams, wr0te Roald Dahl. Chocolate, the world’s favourite food, is consumed on every occasion thinkable. Ever wondered how chocolate was invented and what’s inside a chocolate bar?



By Raziqueh Hussain

Published: Fri 31 Dec 2010, 9:55 PM

Last updated: Mon 6 Apr 2015, 3:05 AM

The Mars chocolate roadshow held in Dubai last month discussed the history of chocolate and indulged in a few secrets behind its making. The next one will take place in Egypt next year.

According to corporate affairs director of Mars, Yolande Pineda, the GCC is 9th among the 10 leading consumers in the market. Ashraf Shehata, sceintific and regulatory affairs manager claimed you can integrate a bar of chocolate (daily perhaps!) and still lead a healthy lifestyle. And if you thought the Burj Khalifa was the world’s tallest tower, you can eat your words, as in 2009, Mars GCC produced enough chocolate to build four Burj Khalifa Towers!

It was in the year 1932 that Mars appeared. In Chicago, a man whose name was Mr Mars, owned a small factory that had been making the Milky Way bar for a number of years. In fact, he had invented it himself.

When his son, Forrest, finished his education as an industrial engineer at Yale, his dad said: “Son, there ain’t room for two of us in this little business of mine.” So, he gave him $5,000 and the recipe for Milky Way.

The younger Mars made his way to Slough in England, intent on making a “chew bar”, so he placed a strip of soft caramel on top and then coated it with chocolate. But it is not easy to make chocolate stick to caramel, as Cadbury discovered when, some time later, it made the Curly Wurly. The chocolate kept flaking off. Parents complained that it went all over the carpet, and the Curly Wurlys were withdrawn.

But Forrest Mars had the secret, and the Mars Bar was born. It swept the world, the first ever chewy bar. And very soon 600 million were being eaten every year in England alone. Cut to recent times, when Mars GCC was established in 1993, Dubai was the ideal location given the openness of the country, its port facilities and redistribution capabilities. “Building this facility in Dubai has always been part of the Mars GCC strategic plan,” says Pineda.

Mars GCC produces a wide range of products and brands to cater for the different tastes and consumer preferences. In the region, leading brands such as Galaxy and Bounty are targeted and preferred by women whilst Jewels was produced based on local consumer feedback and is mainly sold to families across the Middle East. On the other hand, sales of Snickers and M&M’s, are mainly sold to the youth.

Mars GCC sources as many raw materials as possible from within the local markets. “For example all of our sugar and packaging materials are sourced from within the GCC. In all sites where Mars operates, our policy is to contribute to developing a local eco-system with our service suppliers,” she adds.

Some of the CSR projects are the Al Haraka Baraka Programme where Mars GCC along with the UAE Ministry of Education launched in 2006 an activity based programme that sets out to promote the benefits of increased physical activity for children in the Middle East. In the Injaz Al Arab Programme, Mars GCC is supporting INJAZ al-Arab, Middle East arm of the international organisation called Junior Achievement Worldwide, a non-profit organisation aimed to educate and inspire young people to be successful in the global economy. Says Pineda, “We have a responsibility to build a business that is sustainable for generations to come. Our principles in action bring our principles to life, thus making a positive difference towards people and the planet.” Let’s end on a sweet note.

RECIPES

BOUNTY PINA COLADA

Ingredients

Pineapple (diced) 600 gms

Fresh orange juice 150 ml

Bounty bars 4

Coconut milk 100 ml

Ice cubes

Method:

Place the peeled and diced pineapple in a blender cup along with the orange juice and blend to a fine pulp.

Cut each bounty bar into 6 pieces and add to the pineapple mix along with 6-8 ice cubes and blend until the ice is crushed. Finally add the coconut milk and blend to combine the mix in the mixture.

Tips

Keep all the ingredients in the fridge prior to blending to keep the temperature of drink as low as possible, the ice cubes will aid with chilling the drink.

Pour a little chocolate round the inside of the glass prior to pouring in the beverage to give a more decorative touch.

CHOCO BISCUIT PUNCH

Plain white yoghurt 250 ml

Powdered sugar or condensed milk 5 tbps

Grated Galaxy chocolate 1 tsp

Powdered cardamoms a pinch

Biscuit powder 1 packet

Butter.......................................................100 gms

Almonds, grated...................................50 gms

Galaxy bars...........................................6

Method

1. Biscuit Base

Melt Galaxy bars and butter. Now add biscuit powder and grated almonds. Mix into a thick ball. Now spread this base in a dish. Add more grated Galaxy bar. Freeze this base in the fridge.

2. Fruit punch

Take a clean white transparent cloth and pour yoghurt and hang the cloth so the extra water from the yoghurt goes out (hang the cloth for about 30 minutes). Now transfer the hung yoghurt into a bowl and add powdered sugar.

Add cardamom powder and gently mix all ingredients together. Pour this on the refrigerated biscuits base and decorate it with grated chocolate biscuits powder. Keep this in the fridge for 2 hours to set and serve chilled.

MALTESERS BALLS IN CUSTARD

Cottage cheese 100 gms

Powdered sugar 2 tbsp

Maltesers chocolate 15-20

Sugar (powdered) 3 cups

Galaxy bars melted with butter

Cool Shake

Milk 2 cups

Sugar 2 tbsp

Custard powder 2 tbsp

Caramels for decoration 4 tbps

Method

Choco balls

Mix cottage cheese and sugar, and make a soft dough.

Take Maltesers chocolate and cover the chocolate with this dough and dip this in melted galaxy bar chocolate sauce. Freeze the balls for an hour.

Cool Custard

Boil milk and add sugar and make custard till it becomes thick. Cool this and decorate the base with caramel. Add the frozen Malteser balls. Serve.

raziqueh@khaleejtimes.com


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