Step 2: Roasting the Cocoa Beans

Picture of Roasting the Cocoa Beans
Because these cocoa beans are raw, we need to roast them before we use them. I had originally intended to roast them over an open fire somehow, but given the (completely understandable) fire ban in Alberta at the moment, I'm doing it on the stove. I put the beans in a frying pan over medium high heat for about 5-10 minutes, tossing occasionally. You can tell when they're done because they get just a bit darker and start to give off a subtle toasty-cocoa smell (the raw beans smell... odd. Kind of like chocolate and wine).

They will probably make some little crackling noises throughout the cooking process, but if they start to "pop" and jump out of the pan, you should turn down the heat.

I should point out that I'm not an expert at roasting cocoa beans, but after several attempts and burning quite a few beans in the oven, I found this to be the most successful method.