Pulp + Beans: Craft Chocolate Gifts in Five Natural Flavours

December 18, 2020

Seeking a great gift for a chocolate-loving friend? Check out this distinctive new Malaysian brand, promising handcrafted temptations that harness natural ingredients to beautiful effect, paying homage to the cacao tree's harvest of pulp and beans. 

The team of Malaysian friends who've launched Pulp + Beans this month include Ethan and Janice (the founder of Petaling Jaya's seven-year-old Jam & Kaya Cafe), collaborating with Otto Tay, one of Malaysia's most heralded young pastry chefs. 

Otto's name is well-known to many local bakers and chefs: He was part of the national team that won the World Pastry Cup in Lyon, France, in 2019, trouncing top pastry talents from across the globe with competitive creations that included an intricate chocolate dessert.

Pulp + Beans relies on a foundation of top-quality couverture chocolate, resulting in rich chocolate with a firm snap and mellow creaminess. It's considered more nourishing with pure healthy fat compared to compound chocolates, which comprise vegetable fats and sweeteners that leave a sickly, stickier mouthfeel.

The brand's chocolate comes in convenient baton-like sticks, designed for easy snacking on the move - you can carry them around and consume them whenever you like, without messing up your fingers, thanks to the thoughtful individual wrapping for each piece. Ideally, the chocolate should be stored at 18-20°C, around the temperature of an air-conditioned room. Refrigeration is fine too.

These treats were crafted in a 'chocolate room kitchen' with a special cabinet to maintain temperatures that prevent water condensation on the chocolate, melted at 45°C, tempered on a marble table at 28°C, then reheated to 32°C for the most stable fat crystallisation of the chocolate. It's a meticulous preparation process that also requires baking, cutting and crushing of many other ingredients.

Pulp + Beans is offering a sampler of 10 pieces comprising five current flavours at an introductory price of RM60 (will be RM80 later). These come in wood-based, well-constructed boxes that help each piece of chocolate stay in place, perfect for a cheerful present.

The chocolate contains no artificial colouring. Instead, its natural colouring includes freeze-fried raspberry and passion fruit powder. Each piece is 12-14 grams, with about eight grams of chocolate and four to six grams of other components. The various flavours feature different textures, though all have sea salt flakes to balance out the sweetness.

You barely need to chew on the chocolate - it melts in the mouth naturally and blissfully. Pulp + Beans' founders spent nearly a year fine-tuning this chocolate, with the painstaking effort well worth it.

The fab five of Pulp + Beans kicks off with the ever-elegant Dark Chocolate - Belgium couverture chocolate, smooth and sultry, tinged with Taiwanese pure honey, its nectarous taste contrasting with the pronounced twist of sea salt, studded with rolled oats for crunch. Chocolate at its most seductive.

The Matcha blends Belgium white couverture with Japanese green tea, a match made in dessert heaven, laced with rice puffs and sesame seeds for a rocky-road, almost cereal-like crisp in every bite - potentially addictive for kids of all ages and young-at-heart adults of every generation.

Framboise scales up the ambition by bringing together two types of chocolate, French Valrhona raspberry couverture and Belgium chocolate caviar, with the milk chocolate removed and replaced by freeze-dried raspberry in the former, finished with feuilletine flakes. This is the one if you love a perky tang in your sweets.

Exotic is the most aromatic of them all - the fruity fragrance wafts over as soon as you unwrap a piece. As always, Pulp + Beans has carefully curated a medley of engaging elements, complementing each other compellingly - Valrhona passion fruit couverture (with milk chocolate eliminated again, swapped out for freeze-dried passion fruit), coupled with dehydrated mango for a tropical triumph of ripe, potent passion.

Last but by no means least is Cafe, the surefire smash for coffee devotees - Belgium milk couverture with Australian-roasted coffee (a blend of Guatemalan, Indian and Brazilian beans), made extra-nutty with roasted walnuts. This is the personal favourite of Pulp + Beans' founders, with notes of chocolate and coffee woven wonderfully, bringing the best of brilliant beans together.

Pulp + Beans' chocolates currently require a preorder of at least three days in advance, with delivery exclusively within the Klang Valley for now or pick-up from Jam & Kaya Cafe. 

Pulp + Beans 

Order by WhatsApp: +6017-7200874

For enquiries: [email protected]