I have this Thing for Chocolate
Greetings from San Fran airport where I am at risk of being arrested for wearing gold moon boots, judging by the looks of passers-by anyway…
I want to tell you that I have this thing for chocolate. (FYI I also have things for cakes, pastries, sweets, biscuits, candyfloss and whatever you’re having yourself. But chocolate is and always has been number one: when you know, you know, right?)
I left Utah earlier today after a fabulous 8 days of skiing and après bants and I’ve ingested a ginormous amount of chocolate on the merry-go-round. I inhaled hot chocolates err’day and died by rich chocolate desserts at regular intervals so I feel quite entitled to speak on the subject. One brand in particular stole my hard-won heart and that was Ritual chocolate. Simply dreamy stuff. Small batch fine chocolate produced at high altitude in Utah indeed. 7000 FT to be exact. (The devil is in the detail.)
There are several flavours from which to chose and I have tasted and quality control tested most of them in the name of research and can confirm they are all delicious.
I concentrated on the 70% cacao Mid Mountain blend which I felt was an apt choice for a ski holiday:
“A balanced blend of all the Ritual origins. Our goal was to highlight subtle tasting notes from each bean. Fruity, nutty, earthy, chocolatey, floral- it’s all here. (I’m reading this along the lines of ‘for the girl who wants it ALL.’)
2016 Academy of Chocolate Gold Medal
Tasting Notes: Strawberry, Fudge & Graham Cracker.” You get the picture.
Also, anyone wanna try a chocolate tasting course with me?
Anyway I want to bring to your attention the health perks of dark chocolate. Not that you needed an excuse!
Dark chocolate (as in 70% cocoa content and upwards) is one of the most anti-oxidant dense foodstuffs around. (Antioxidants being compounds that react easily with oxygen in order to protect other compounds from entering into ‘damaging’ talks with oxygen; the body’s mops if you will). The names of the main antioxidants include polyphenols, flavenols and catechins don’tcha know. These do all manner of positive things, from relaxing blood vessels (leading to increased blood flow and lower blood pressure), to elevating your mood, to protecting your skin from the sun… The list goes on.
Sure it’s made from the seeds of the cocoa tree – a plant! #Plantbased diet here I come! I knew I’d succumb to the trend in some small way eventually.
It contains a significant amount of soluble fibre (which benefits your heart and helps stave off diabetes) and minerals by the truckload: iron, copper, magnesium, manganese, potassium, phosphorus, selenium and zinc.
Obviously I’d advise you to eat it in moderation unlike moi because as well as being nutrient-dense, it is also mightily dense in calories. To the tune of c. 500 cals per 100 gr. Ah well, you win some, you lose some. It also contains small amounts of caffeine and theobromine (which is very similar to caffeine) which may be of importance if you’re watching your overall intake.
On a more positive note, its exerts a positive effect on your lipid profile, i.e. it boosts your ‘good’ and reduces your ‘bad’ cholesterol. Hurray for dark chocolate!
For those little devils of you who cannot do without milk chocolate, my advice is to try to avoid palm oil and an emulsifier which lurks under the name of E476 wherever possible. Lindt (aka love of my life) milk chocolate is a good one, as is Toblerone. (Well I am sitting in an airport!)
So no need to banish milk chocolate from your existence entirely. Sure melt some and drizzle it over your pancakes tomorrow. And don’t bother giving it up for Lent: a mug’s game which will inevitably leave you longing for your fix and bingeing.
To whom it may concern at Ritual Chocolate,
I just tried to buy your product online and was deeply saddened to learn that you don’t ship outside the US. I know you’re probably hyperconscious of your carbon footprint and what have you but you need to get on this at your earliest convenience as I may have just dogged into the last of what I bought in Park City and panic is setting in.
Lots of love,
P.S. To read more, please visit skipthescript.com3