In a nutshell: A little-known spice that’s great in all manner of desserts, especially coconut and chocolate.
Rosita de Cacao is a small flower that grows in Mexico. Despite its misleading name, it is not related to the cocoa plant. The flower, once dried, takes on a slightly yellow colour and an intense aroma. It was a favourite ingredient in Aztec chocolate drink preparations for centuries. Today, it’s used mostly in Oaxaca for a chocolate and corn drink called tejate.
The complex floral aromas of Rosita de Cacao present notes of caramel and dried fruit and candied fruit. Its sweet taste and exceptional aromas make it the ideal accompaniment to chocolate-based desserts. It’s also great in pastry.
Also known as Quararibea funebris, flor de cacao, madre de cacao, poyomatli, and cacaoxochitl in the Aztec language.
About Épices de Cru
Épices de Cru began in 1982 as a catering partnership between Philippe and Ethné de Vienne. Their mission was a kind of “cooking pot anthropology:” learning the secrets of family cooking around the world and applying these techniques to the needs of hungry Montrealers. The secret, they learned, was spices. Over the last two decades, Philippe and Ethné have searched for the world’s best spices, accompanied by their children, Marika and Arik. The de Viennes believe in direct sourcing spices: visiting growing regions, spending time with growers, and developing personal relationships that last decades. In 2004, they officially opened their first spice shop in Montreal’s fantastic Jean Talon market– it’s since become a mecca for foodies from all over the world. I first visited in 2008 and have been buying and using their spices on a regular basis ever since that first exciting visit. They steadfastly maintain that they do nothing original, only facilitating the exchange of culinary common sense from one place to another. But, what they do is simply quite brilliant - by providing us with the finest quality ingredients, and their superb spice mixes, we can all experiment with unusual spices and recreate delicious recipes from around the world.