Artisanal chocolate, artisanal packaging.

If you’ve held a box of Mason & Co dark chocolate before, you’ve probably noticed how different the packaging is – a beautiful, velvety pop of colour (depicting the flavour) contrasted with the mellow browns of compostable craft paper.

Ever since our inception in 2015, all of our packaging has been screen printed by local artisans from the bioregion. The effort & attention-to-detail required in this traditional form of hand printing gives the packaging a beautiful finish and makes our chocolate products a tad more special!

Screen printing (a.k.a silk screening) is a traditional technique of pressing ink through a stencilled mesh screen to create an imprint of the design on the surface beneath. One of the oldest methods of printmaking (with examples dating back to the Song Dynasty in China!), it involves creating a stencil of an image/graphic on a screen made of porous mesh.  A roller, commonly known as squeegee, is used to pull paint over the stencil – pushing it through the mesh & onto the paper being printed.  Unlike the paint used in some other forms of printing, screen printing paint sits right on the surface of the paper & doesn’t get absorbed fully, resulting in incredibly rich & vibrant colour!

Created: To start, the artisans take the selected design & print it out onto a transparent film – this will be used to create the stencil.
Prepared: A mesh screen then is chosen to suit the complexity of the design & the texture of craft paper. This mesh screen is then coated with a layer of light-reactive emulsion which will harden when developed under a bright light.
The transparent film with the design is then placed onto the emulsion-coated screen, and the whole thing is exposed to a bright light (or the sun!). The light hardens the emulsion, so the parts of the screen which are covered by the design remain in liquid form. With the bar packaging that includes many colours, a separate screen must be used to apply each layer of paint – so the artisans must use their skills to design each stencil, and line them up perfectly to ensure the final design is seamless.

Washed: Once the screens are exposed (for a set time), areas of the screen that weren’t covered by the design would have turned hard and the extra emulsion is rinsed away, leaving behind a clear imprint of the design for the ink to pass through.
Dried: Once the screen dries, the stencil is now ready to be used.
Print: The screen is then placed on the printing press – the craft paper is laid down flat on the board under the screen.

The screen is carefully placed onto the printing board. Paint is added onto the screen & a squeegee is used to drag the paint along the length of the screen. During this, the ink is being forced through the pores of the stencil, imprinting the paper beneath.

Once all the papers have been printed, the emulsion is removed using a special washing fluid so the mesh can be re-used to create new stencils.

Dried & checked: The printed papers are then put next to a fan, which dries or rather ‘cures’ the ink and creates a smooth finish. Once dried, the artisans thoroughly check and wash away the residue.

Like most hand-printing methods, screen printing has a very distinctive look. The compostable paper with the velvety finish & extreme vibrancy of the paint cannot be replicated with any other technique. Although, screen-printing has it’s limitations. Fine details can be lost or broken up in the printing process which means we have to work with different styles of art. But here lies the beauty of this traditional printing technique – it’s hand made.

While opting for digital printing has its own set of advantages with more colours & complex designs, the authenticity of the screen-printing art form (which is almost lost in this time & age) with the touch of human element brings great value to our bars – making them truly artisanal.

Composting with Cacao

It takes roughly 250 cacao beans (2-5 cacao pods!) to craft one bar of Mason & Co chocolate. The beans are fermented, dried & shipped from the farm to our artisan factory – where we sort, grade, roast & crack the bean before turning the cacao nibs into chocolate.

While separating the cacao nib from the bean, we observed large amounts of cacao shells being discarded with every batch made. Cacao shells makeup almost 1/3rd of the cacao bean and once separated from the nib, they are a waste product at Mason & Co.

While some excess shells were used to make the Organic Cacao Herbal Tea many of you are familiar with, the others were shipped to local farmers (like Homegrown Produce, a local farm + food processing unit!) who use it for agricultural purposes, like composting & mulching. By recognizing the immense potential & benefits in our discards, local farmers help us manage waste & derive value from products that are no longer in use at the factory!

Every now & then, Rachna, the young & passionate farmer behind Homegrown Produce, drives down to the Mason & Co factory where our staff loads her car with cacao shells. (Pictured here are Saraswati & Andal with cacao shells from Rachna’s last pick-up)

Composting is a great way to recycle waste & return nutrients to the soil – our organic cacao shells provide the soil with nutrients like phosphate, nitrogen & potash, making it great topsoil to use as-is (or when combined with other materials like your everyday food scraps!)

The shells are taken to Homegrown Produce’s compost room, where Rachna stores food scraps, hay, panchagavya & a massive mound of carbon & protein layers that form the compost pile. The ‘protein layer’ is made of daily food scraps & panchagavya while the ‘carbon layer’ comprises of hay, dry leaves, cacao shells. Apart from providing nutrients, the shells also help balance the PH levels in the compost pile & soil!

“Alternating layers of carbon & protein help speed up the decomposition process,” says Rachna who’s spent her recent years in the field of farming & aims to build Homegrown Produce into a self-sustainable land.

Once the layers are piled, the rotting compost pile is often turned around to ensure even decomposition. When ready, the cacao shells lose their bright colour and the final product is a black-coloured soil. Home to many organisms who help turn the compost into rich, ready-to-use, topsoil, Rachna (among many composters) likes to refer to the soil as Black Gold!

We’re thankful to those who recognize the value in our cacao shells & utilize it to its fullest potential. Cacao is more than just chocolate – while at the farm, waste pods provide a home for its pollinators, at the factory we’re seeking more uses for our excess shells. Think they could be useful to you? Write to us!

Subko x Mason & Co

Experiments in specialty coffee and fine cacao flavour profiles.

Introducing our latest custom bars featuring Subko coffee’s meticulously sourced beans from Chikmagalur and our delicious Idduki cacao. These bars truly highlight the role that farm-level processing plays in the flavour profile of a raw ingredient – both the bars have the same ingredients from the same origin but exhibit their own unique flavour notes, all because the coffee was processed differently at the farm!

Extracting fine flavours from different origins, fermentation and farm processes is something we love exploring at Mason & Co – these bars are the first time we employed similar techniques and practices to coffee and love how the bars have turned out!

Subko roasts small batches of meticulously sourced 100% Arabica coffee of different coffee fruit varietals (including the S-795, Cauvery and 5B). They source from across various coffee estates and growing regions in India, identifying the minority of specialty farmers working to revolutionize coffee processing in Karnataka (India’s traditional coffee growing belt) whilst also exploring newer coffee producing states like Tamil Nadu, and Meghalaya in the North-East.

Soon, Subko hopes to source from beyond India to develop a truly ‘regional’ brand representing Asia exclusively, starting from within the Indian Subcontinent; Nepal and Myanmar are on its radar. It’s name is a play on words afterall, SUBKO: ‘from the subcontinent, for all.

For this special partnership with Mason & Co, Subko embarked on an experiment at both the farm and roasting levels. Subko utilized one lot of 100% organic coffee from one of its direct trade partner farms – Tat Tvam Asi Estate – which was processed with two distinct methods to experiment with how each would interact with our single origin cacao: one part of the lot with a ‘natural’ process and one part with a ‘washed’ process.

The ‘natural process’ beans were roasted with a unique profile best suited for 65% cacao while the ‘washed process’ beans were roasted with a profile that ended up complimenting 75% cacao. Notably, the ‘natural process’ ended up giving the 65% chocolate bar an incredibly cherry and green apple profile as a result of the natural dried method wherein the coffee remained within its own fruit casing. Combined with our cacao, this naturally emulated an old school childhood favourite in the Indian subcontinent: blackforest cake!

Both bars are unique and are intended to be consumed together so the varying flavour notes can be compared and appreciated. These bars are available exclusively at Subko (If you live in Mumbai, you can order them online or take-away from the cafe), and coming soon to Bread & Chocolate in Auroville!

This is the first of a series of limited edition dark chocolate with coffee using Subko’s beans.

Subko Specialty Coffee Roasters and Bakehouse is at its core, committed to an ideal: to help reimagine and reinvent an unlikely origin – the Indian subcontinent – as a legitimate contributor to the global specialty coffee and craft baking movements.

Subko aims to fulfill this goal with four key pillars: Specialty Coffee, Craft Bakehouse, Sustainability, & Design and Creativity.

Subko’s flagship roastery and bakehouse – launched on 15 March 2020 amidst the Covid-19 Pandemic – was designed through a months-long restoration and conversion of a 1925 Goan bungalow nestled in a quiet bylane of Mumbai’s trendy Bandra West neighborhood.

Learn more about Subko online: Website, Instagram & Facebook.

Chocolate Sensing | Pond, Delhi

We are hosting our first ever chocolate sensing in Delhi/NCR this weekend at the amazing Pond!

This experience is intended for chocolate lovers that want to understand how process, fermentation, terroir and origin impact the flavour of a piece of chocolate – something we love exploring at Mason & Co.

Cacao is a fascinating plant, and chocolate is the miraculous substance we create from it – join us as we talk, touch, smell and taste cacao at every stage, from the bean to the bar.

Spots are limited. Please RSVP – Click here to register.

Guest Blog: Coconut Cacao Truffles by Kelly Mason

Savoury or sweet, we love seeing our cacao products being used in your recipes. The talented Kelly Mason created these delicious Coconut Cacao Truffles using Mason & Co. Kelly, is a plant-based chef, yoga teacher & a slow-fashion model who loves creating art. This is part 1 of her Guest Blog series where she explains how to create her easy-to-make truffles with our cacao powder, cacao nibs & dark chocolate. Thanks for sharing this recipe, Kelly!

Coconut Cacao Truffles - Ingredients

For Truffles:

For Plating:

“It is very exciting for me as a plant-based chef to be a recipe developer for a company whose products I have been using for a number of years! This is the first of many recipes I am creating for Mason & Co and I couldn’t be happier to share the recipe so you can create your own plant-based & vegan desserts at home using Mason & Co products! I make these little treats all the time for friends, family and for our coffee shop where we serve Indian coffee & vegan/vegetarian desserts. This vegan & gluten-free recipe is super-easy & the desserts are so rich and creamy – here’s the recipe for my Coconut Cacao Truffles; including guidelines for plating the ultimate vegan dessert dish. Enjoy fully, totally & completely!” – Kelly


  1. Place the chopped 55% Coconut Mylk Dark Chocolate bar into a mixing bowl & place onto a pan of water to melt the chocolate. (Double-boiler method)
  2. In a separate bowl, add coconut cream, vanilla and cacao powder. Whisk well until all is combined.
  3. Once the chocolate has melted, slowly add to the coconut mixture while continuing to stir. Mix until a smooth & even consistency is formed.
  4. Pour the combined mixture into your silicon moulds & tap to release any air bubbles.
  5. Place into the freezer for 2-3 hours to set.
  6. Once set, remove from moulds & coat with Mason & Co Cacao Powder – then place in fridge until ready to serve!


  1. Take a clean plate & place the melted chocolate off-centre. With a plating brush, create brush strokes across the plate.
  2. Take the truffles and place onto the chocolate brush strokes, then take cacao nibs and sprinkle on top of each truffle.
  3. Finally, take a pinch of cacao powder & sprinkle across to finish!

Serve estimate: 12 truffle bars
Freezer friendly: 1 month
Fridge storage: 1 week

Send us photos of your dish! Tag @masonandco_chocolate in your creations & use the hashtag #MadeWithMasonAndCo

Kisan Diwas: Celebrating our Cacao Farmers

December 23rd is Farmers Day in India – a day to highlight the essential role farmers play in our country’s economic development. Farmers are an indispensable resource in our country and at Mason & Co. This Kisan Diwas, we celebrate our cacao farmers & all their efforts. They are the reason our chocolate tastes so good!

Growing cacao is a laborious task. It takes 4 – 5 years for a cacao tree to bear fruit and, due to a lack of institutional support and training, cacao farmers rely on their peers to understand how to grow, harvest & process their beans.

Pictured here is Mr Papachan, with his sickle that he uses to cut down cacao pods.

At Mason & Co we work closely with our farmers, consulting on harvest and fermentation practices to improve how cacao is grown, processed and fermented in our country. All our beans come from organic certified multi-crop farms. Multi-cropping is a less impactful way of farming; it minimises erosion and increases water percolation.

Pictured here is freshly-cut cacao pod.

All our farm partners are organic certified; their cacao is grown free of chemical pesticide and fertilisers and we take great pride in being able to support them. 😄🌾

We work with both organic & in-organic farmers to help bring up the standard of cacao processing in India. If you are a farmer or a person connected to growing cacao (in India or elsewhere) and would like to get in touch, please do write to [email protected], we would love to hear from you!

Guest Blog: Granola Bites by Copper and Cloves

Try these healthy & delicious bite-sized vegan granola laddoos developed by the amazing Sarah of Copper and Cloves. Indulgent and satisfying, they are easy to make and quite nourishing!

We love that Sarah has used our cacao in so many of her recipes, like the cacao energy balls, vegan bounty bars and her creamy banana nice cream. Thanks Sarah for developing these healthy and indulgent treats using Mason & Co!

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You can roll these out in a butter-paper lined tray and cut into bars if you like - but we’ve rolled them into bite-sized balls. To make these more fun to serve as a dessert post a dinner party, the answer is always to dip them in chocolate! These are also super-fun to make with children, who always love to dip things in chocolate.

Simply melt some Mason & Co dark chocolate - anything above 60% will be perfect. The bitterness of dark chocolate will balance perfectly with the natural sweetness of the laddoos. Try experimenting with dark flavours like the Cinnamon & Chilli or Rosemary & Sea Salt -  to find your favourite!




  • 1 cup pitted dates
  • 1 ½ cups rolled oats
  • 1 cup chopped dried figs
  • ¼ cup jaggery liquid
  • ¼ cup homemade almond butter
  • 100g Mason & Co dark chocolate- anything above 60% will be delicious for this recipe.

What to do:

  1. Put the dates into a blender and process until it becomes a smooth, spreadable paste. Add a splash of water if it is too dry and lumpy.
  2. Put the date paste in a bowl, add the oats and chopped figs and stir well to combine. This may take a fair bit of stirring :)
  3. Place jaggery liquid and almond butter into a pan and stir it continuously on low heat until it comes together.
  4. Combine the melted nut butter with the oats and dates mixture with a wooden spoon.
  5. Once it all comes together, scoop out a spoon full of the mix and roll it between your palms to form a ball and place them in the freezer for 30 minutes.
  6. In the meantime, put a small pan, half-filled with water onto a low flame and put a bowl that fits snugly on top without touching the water. Break up the dark chocolate into the bowl. The bowl will gradually heat the broken- up chocolate and it will melt slowly. Keep stirring the pieces until they form a smooth, shiny melted liquid.
  7. Take them out of the freezer and holding each one firmly, dip half into the melted chocolate and put back onto the plate. Repeat until you have dipped them all, and put them back into the freezer for 5-10 minutes to allow the chocolate to harden. 
  8. Take out of the freezer for a couple of minutes before serving - to allow everything to soften a little.

Send us photos of your dish! Tag @copperandcloves & @masonandco_chocolate in your creations and use the hashtag #icookedcopperandcloves & #madewithmasonandco

Sarah of Copper & Cloves

Mason & Co Cacao Butter – origin & recipes!

Extracted directly from the cacao bean, our cacao butter is organic, unrefined and non-deodorised, retaining its natural ‘chocolatey’ aroma.

At Mason & Co, we use cacao butter to soften our chocolate; it is what makes our chocolate so creamy and luscious! At our Pod-To-Plate cacao dinners, our friends at the Danda Food Project used cacao butter as a healthy and vegan fat on a smorgasbord of delicious roasted vegetables.  The butter can also be combined with cacao powder to make chocolate at home. We released this product online and at our cafe Bread & Chocolate a few months ago. Since then we have received many messages from friends and customers saying they love frying fish, baking cakes and even making salad dressing out of this delicious, flavourful and natural fat!

We developed the following recipes with the amazing Shumaila Chauhan to inspire you to try our cacao butter at home:

Cacao & Almond Butter Banana Toast

Cacao & Almond Butter Banana Toast



  1. In the bowl of a food processor, add the almonds. Churn the almonds till they are smooth and creamy, about 8-10 minutes, scraping the almonds off the sides of the processor whenever required.
  2. Melt the Mason & Co Cacao Butter in a heat proof microwaveable bowl.
  3. When the almonds are nice and smooth, add the cacao butter, honey, vanilla, and pinch of salt (if using). Process just enough to combine smoothly.
  4. Toast your bread.
  5. Spread the white chocolate almond butter.
  6. Top with banana slices and Mason & Co Cacao Nibs.
  7. Store the white chocolate butter in an airtight container to enjoy later.

Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Toast

Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Toast



  1. In the bowl of a food processor, add the peanuts and process the nuts for 7-9 minutes or until creamy, scraping down the sides with a spatula when necessary. Add the melted cacao butter in the first 5 minutes of processing the peanuts.
  2. Add the cacao powder, 1 tsp honey and salt, if using. Blend till combined. If required, add more honey.
  3. Toast your bread. Spread the dark chocolate peanut butter on top. Sprinkle crushed walnuts, and enjoy.
  4. Store the dark chocolate peanut butter in an airtight container.


Cacao Butter & Avocado Toast

Cacao Butter & Avocato Toast


  • 1 Avocado, sliced
  • 2 tbsp Mason & Co Cacao Butter, melted
  • 1 tomato, sliced
  • few fresh basil leaves, torn
  • salt & pepper
  • bread of your choice


  1. In a small microwave-safe bowl, place cacao butter. Microwave for 20-30 seconds until melted.
  2. Toast your bread. Spread the melted cacao butter generously.
  3. Add avocado and tomato slices. Garnish with basil leaves, and season with salt and pepper.

You can purchase our cacao butter here. We would love to hear how you use it!

Bean To Bar Chocolate Tasting & Dialogue | Malabar House, Fort Kochi

If you love dark chocolate and happen to be at the Kochi Biennale next weekend, then you're in luck! We will be hosting a very special bean-to-bar chocolate tasting and dialogue at Malabar House on Sunday, 13th January. This is an opportunity to taste chocolate made from rare and unique beans from India and around the world.
We have limited spots, so if you are interested, please register by calling +91 9096564907, or, email [email protected]

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