[Sca-cooks] 16th C Molinillo (chocolate stirring stick) found in St. Augustine, FL

Stefan li Rous StefanliRous at austin.rr.com
Tue Dec 29 22:54:29 PST 2009

 From the Trimaris list:
<<< Interesting article on chocolate in St Augustine in period!

http://staugustine.com/news/local-news/2009-12-28/sweet-discovery  >>>

Among other comments in the article:
"That humble whisk -- known as a molinillo -- is a big deal to  
archaeologists because it proves that chocolate dates back at least to  
the 1500s in St. Augustine."

"Special pots of brass and similar metals were made to serve the  
drink. The pots were fitted with a top and there was a hole for the  

The Spanish kept their new-found treat, which also was noted for  
giving a burst of energy, to themselves for almost 100 years,  
according to historians.

During that time the English would seize the Spanish treasure ships  
coming from the New World and take their cargos. They knew what to do  
with the gold, but sometimes they would find these odd, bitter seeds.  
No one knew what to make of them, and they were dismissed as trash,  
possibly rabbit droppings, according to one source.

Eventually the chocolate secret did get out, and by the 1600s,  
chocolate -- or, rather, the chocolate drink -- became popular.

In France no one but the aristocracy was allowed to drink it, while in  
England, if you had the price of a drink, the chocolate brew was  
yours. In 1657 the first chocolate house opened in London, and it  
became a place to socialize, talk and gamble."

So, it appears that the English could've had chocolate sooner, if  
they'd realized what they had.

THLord Stefan li Rous    Barony of Bryn Gwlad    Kingdom of Ansteorra
    Mark S. Harris           Austin, Texas          StefanliRous at austin.rr.com
**** See Stefan's Florilegium files at:  http://www.florilegium.org ****

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