Coconut oil. We've been hearing quite a bit about it lately -- from folks whipping it into coffee (no thanks!) to cooking everything in it. We don't know about all that -- but we do use it, in our Mint Meltaways. [WARNING: SCIENCE AHEAD]
Why coconut oil? It's all about being eutectic! Seriously, seriously, eutectic. A eutectic, in chocolate lingo, is a combination of fats that melts at a lower temperature than any one of the fats by itself. Take milk chocolate, for example. Its melting point is lower than that of its individual ingredients, because the milk fat in the chocolate forms
a eutectic with the cocoa butter, thus it is softer than dark chocolate.
The wonder of this scientific phenomenon is fabulously illustrated in the center of our Mint Meltaways, which are made by mixing chocolate and coconut oil (a lauric fat) and some minty goodness. The result is a unique, melt-in-your-mouth experience, due to the fact that the combined melting point is well below both that of chocolate (94 °F) and coconut oil, and both of those are below body temp.
Dang but science is tasty.