Let me give you a short overview what's going on in my little workshop (size of about ten square meters) when I produce small batches of fine chocolate:
The first step in processing the beans is roasting. I use a conventional oven and apply different temperatures and time periods, depending on the beans.
Winnowing / Cracking
After roasting the beans, they need to be cooled, cracked and winnowed. Cracking means running the beans through a special mill that cracks the beans into small pieces and separates the husk Winnowing is a procedure to remove the husk, so that I can work with only the cocoa nibs that remain.
Grounding / Refining
Afterwards, I grind and refine the nibs. As the nibs are ground, they release cocoa butter and the solid nibs turn into cocoa liquor. Eventually, I add sugar and a small amount of additional cocoa butter and let the chocolate refine for a certain amount of time.
The last step before molding the chocolate into bars is tempering. This procedure ensures the uniform sheen and crisp bite of properly processed chocolate.