Thursday, April 30, 2009

Benefits of Dark Chocolate on Mood

PsychCentral has an article today about the benefits of dark chocolate, Sisters and Brothers. Your Chocolate Priestess hope that each of you reads it but I did want to mention a few of the points so you even if you don't, you don't run out and starting eating large quantities of the Sacred Substance without good purpose which can only be born of good thought.

First, the benefits of dark chocolate are found daily but only in a 1 ounce serving. That is not much so please don't go out and buy that large candy bar.

Second, and this is one I did not realize though I never do this for other reasons, consuming milk at the same time will lower your bodies ability to use the beneficial chemicals in dark chocolate. I, as you know from reading the Saturday Sacraments, drink water with my chocolate do that I am focused on pure experience with the Offering.

There are a few questions that are not answered in this article. What percent of darkness is required for greatest benefit? Do preservatives or added ingredients weaker these benefits? For example are dark chocolate covered blueberries better or worse than just blueberries or the chocolate? While this article mentioned that dark chocolate improves mood it didn't specify by what degree or how that was measured.

As always, read anything you see about chocolate with an analytical mind and listen to anything you hear with a skeptical ear. Only then can you make the best decisions on how you can use chocolate to get closer to the Divine.

Sisters and Brothers, may you too take the time to slowly appreciate what the Divine and human ingenuity have offered you in chocolate.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Another Breakfast Chocolate

You've heard of the South Beach diet I'm sure, Sisters and Brothers. They offer a series of cereal bars under the "Fiber Fit" label I'm assuming to compete withFiberOne bars. While FiberOne has only a couple of flavors, South Beach has more variety. Their latest is a "Mocha" flavor bar.

In terms of dietary fiber, it compares very well with FiberOne bars. In terms of fat, overall they are the same but the South Beach "Mocha" has 1g more saturated fat. Neither has cholesterol and the same amount of protein, only 2g. South Beach has 35mg more sodium but it also has 3% of your daily Potassium needs and twice as much iron as the FiberOne bar. However, FiberOne has more sugars and 20 more calories but it also has both Vitamin A and Calcium which South Beach lacks.

The "Mocha" bar from South Beach has three layers of texture and flavors compared to the "Oats & Chocolate" bar's one layer. The top layer has a mocha flavor, almost cheesecake like quality to it. The coffee isn't overwhelming which was great for me since I'm not a fan of coffee at all -- I prefer my buzz and mycaffeine from the Sacred Substance. Because of this caffeine it's difficult to say if the minor buzz I felt was from the cocoa or the coffee.

The bottom layer is really two layers -- a crunchy crust covered with a chocolate ganache. It looks very much like a candy bar on the bottom and a cheesecake on top. This was a nice crunch to hear as I ate it. Since I'm not a fan of coffee, I wasn't tempted to eat it quickly or to eat it very often.

If you like mocha flavors this could be a good breakfast or snack for you. It certainly will help you get the fiber you need and it will provide a mild buzz though that may be the caffeine as much as the cocoa at work. It does have a lot more chocolate though than the FiberOne bar so if that is really important to you and you like coffee, this will be the choice for your breakfast.

Sisters and Brothers, may you too take the time to slowly appreciate what the Divine and human ingenuity have offered you in chocolate.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Chocolate Cake at The Irish Lion

The Irish Lion in Bloomington, Indiana, is a well-know pub and restaurant in the college town. Your Chocolate Priestess went there late last night, around 9pm, to meet up with friends to celebrate a birthday. While I don't normally eat desserts during the week, using the Saturday Sacraments as my one day to indulge, I did celebrate by trying the restaurant's "Chocolate Cake".

On the menu the cake is described as four layers of important chocolate, walnuts and "sinful" and it also costs almost $7 a slice though it is a large slice. Let's test this description.

First, I counted three layers of cake each divided by a chocolate frosting so what is this fourth layer the menu promised? My guess it that it means the thick chocolate frosting covered with finely chopped walnuts that covered the top and all the way down the side of the slice. It also had a dollop of whipped cream on the top and at the bottom and as I ate it, I found more of the whipped cream under the cake.

The walnuts were great, they tasted delightful, a good counter to the bitterness of the chocolate. I don't know where the chocolate is from so I can't verify what is meant by "imported chocolate". The chocolate taste was slightly bitter balanced with a sweetness but not intense which was disappointing to me. The flavor didn't encourage me to linger over each bite nor did even consuming the entire piece result in any decent cocoa buzz.

The cake was moist and tasty just not as chocolaty or "sinful" as I was hoping for given the description. So if too much chocolate is a concern for you this is a great treat but if you are looking for a solid cocoa buzz, this will not give you that. And no, Sisters and Brothers, having a half yard of Guinness with it does not count as the cake giving you a buzz, that's the alcohol at work. Your Chocolate Priestess had only water so I could fully experience the Irish Lion's Chocolate Cake.

Sisters and Brothers, may you too take the time to slowly appreciate what the Divine and human ingenuity have offered you in chocolate.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Chocolate and Breakfast

While we should always use chocolate in a purposeful way and with moderation, Sisters and Brothers, I also know that many of us simply love chocolate. This love is to be embraced but it is also to be controlled. Let me, your Chocolate priestess, share one way I can get chocolate into my life in a healthy and purposeful way.

I'm sure many of you are aware that to be healthy the human body requires a certain amount of fiber or roughage as I've heard it called. This helps our bodies clean themselves and regulate various functions at an optimal level. Most chocolate itself has very little fiber and even those types that do have fiber generally do not have much compared to the amount of calories or fat or sugar they also contain.

Fiber One bars have a "oats & chocolate" version that I really like. The chocolate flavor is there in each bite, not intense or the type that helps my connect very strongly with the Divine but it does give me a way to curb any cocoa craving I may have in a healthy way. Each bar is 40g and has 140 calories, not much more than many cereal. Each bar also has 1.5g saturated fat and 2.5 other grams of other fats without Trans Fat. It contains 0 cholesterol and 90mg sodium as well as 9g dietary fiber or about 1/3 of what you should consume a day, 10 sugars, and 2 protein. It does contain several allergens so make sure you check the ingredients list.

One or two before I go biking in the mornings gives me a lot of energy as well as covering a good portion of the fiber I need. I don't feel guilty about my chocolate consumption, indeed I feel like I ate it in a helpful form that fits easily into my lifestyle.

Since I eat these 1-3 times a week for breakfast, I tend to buy them in bulk. Big chains such as Sam's offer acceptable prices but they don't take coupons while Target offers a better price and will take coupons when you can find the bigger boxes. I also tend to stock up at my main grocery stores when the product is on sale and I have a coupon. they aren't going to spoil for some time so why not stock up when I can.

If you like cereal bars, give these a look the next time you go to the store. It might help you answer the call to Chocolate as well as offer you some good nutrition.

Sisters and Brothers, may you too take the time to slowly appreciate what the Divine and human ingenuity have offered you in chocolate.

Saturday Sacrament, April 25, 2009

This week I'm going to review truffles from Intrigue Chocolates, which have a use by date of May 15, 2009, so your Chocolate Priestess wanted to make sure she utilized them for a Sacrament at the height of freshness. The reason for this expiration date is that these are made in the French tradition which, instead of using a ganache coating over the truffle, only dusts it with cocoa. Thus it cannot remain good for as long as the hard-coated variations. The package these came in used very few unrecycleble materials, if that matters to you, Sisters and Brothers, as I think it should. The truffles themselves list no artificial ingredients or preservatives and have chocolate as the first ingredient; however, I do not know the amount of fats or cholesterol in each piece because neither the information I received nor the website offers nutritional lists.

Intrigue sent me 11 samples of the huge variety of flavors they offer -- I counted 68 flavors on this list. Look at them below; the beautiful colored foil makes them look like gems, and each color represents a flavor on this little list in each of the gift boxes. Of these, I'll try 11 of the flavors, coconut not being your Chocolate Priestess's choice for any flavoring, but I think trying 10 of 11 will give me ample time to reveal their nature as a potential Sacrament for you, Sisters and Brothers. This revelation, though, will take several hours again, so I can truly submerge myself in each truffle and allow the chocolate to fully enhance my connection to the divine to the degree it is capable.

Below you see two Cabernet-Merlot truffles, the only two matching flavors in offering. They came in merlot-colored foil so were easy to identify from the other flavors. Any discoloration here is probably because I could not try them as you would in the store. Since they are made from fresh and often organic ingredients without that hard coating, they can spoil. These are perfectly fine, but all chocolate and cocoa will discolor over time. Each measures 1 1/8 inches in diameter and is about .75 inches in height. The immediate scent when I easily unwrapped the merlot foil is of cocoa, pure and simple.

Your Chocolate Priestess has had nothing else to eat for over 4 hours and only water to drink as I put the Cabernet-Merlot piece into my mouth and bit it in half. It is soft and cocoa-like in substance, striking my tongue with its immediate bitterness as I chew. I let the second bite melt on my tongue, and as it does so I can start to sense that Cabernet or Merlot taste along with the graininess of the chocolate and the buildup of a general rush in my head. It is a very unique taste, and the bitterness and rush linger for several pleasant minutes.

I'm going to be bold and try the "Jamaican HOT Chocolate" next and see how Intrigue's spicy truffles compare to the Cowgirl ones I tried a while back. It's wrapped in bright red foil, and very dark, almost black, chocolate is revealed as I unwrap it. It melts on my fingertips, but other than the darker cocoa scent I don't sense much difference yet. It is very, very soft, melting quickly, and the spice kicks in at the back of my tongue, making my eyes water. Oh, yeah, this competes well with the previous spicy truffles we've seen on "Saturday Sacraments," and if those were too spicy, the Intrigue version does not linger as long in your mouth.

The third piece is the "Lemon Zesty" sample. It is also very dark in color and is melting a bit in the wrapper now that it has been outside the fridge for half an hour. Again only the cocoa scent meets my nose as I breathe it in. The lemon taste is there when I bite into it, and it intensifies a bit if I let it melt on my tongue.

But does the "Lime!" taste much different from the "Lemon Zesty?" First, it isn't as dark in color, but once more only the cocoa smell is available when I open it. Yes, as I chew it and let it melt, there is a difference that does indeed taste like the lemon versus lime difference, though I would not say it is so intense as to justify an exclamation mark in the title.

Now for a different sort of flavor: "Anise." If you are unfamiliar with this flavor, it may be similar to licorice, and is in fact used as a flavoring in many licorice candies. It came in cobalt-blue foil, and since this is now the fifth truffle to smell like nothing other than cocoa, I want to say that I am a bit disappointed. Part of the total sensory experience for us in The Chocolate Cult is to have something for all five senses to enjoy, and while cocoa is obviously wonderful to us, a hint of what was waiting inside would prime our palates. This piece melts very easily in my mouth, and the anise or licorice flavor is very, very mild.

I'm going to try the "Tuaca" flavor next; Tuaca is an Italian brandy that usually has vanilla and orange notes in its flavor. Your Chocolate Priestess has not had this type of brandy before, but it was an interesting flavor to let melt on my tongue, and it certainly gave me a little buzz.

The next truffle to meet my mouth is the "Cardamom," which in this case is Elettaria cardamomum, for those who know the difference between the two kinds of spice bearing this name. Ah, the intensity of this spice is so strong that it cuts through the normal cocoa scent when I open its silver foil wrapper. It is an intense flavor; I did like it, though I wouldn't want a second piece. It's very Eastern in its flavor, with a bit more kick than cinnamon, for example, as though it has a bit of pepper in it ... it's difficult to describe if you have not had this spice before.

I'll try something floral now with the "R. Valentino" truffle, whose flavor is rose petals. Don't let that worry you, Sisters and Brothers; cooks have been using rose petals as a flavoring for a long time, and most flowers are safe for humans to eat. I open the dusky pink foil but only get the cocoa scent again. Describing the flavor is difficult; it lingers on the back of my tongue and makes my right eye twitch a bit, but I wouldn't call it intense, though it does make me think of roses.

My second to last piece will be the "Fresh Mint" one, which comes in a bright green foil wrapping. This one does have an extra scent to it, though I wouldn't call it minty, which I'm expecting, and this makes me very curious. It's a very unusual flavor, very earthy, and it doesn't taste like any mint that I've ever had. I share it with the Milk Chocolate Alcolyte, and he agrees with me; mint is one of his favorite flavors, though he compares it to Chex mix. I think this might be a fennel flavor, and I don't like it much.

Rinsing my mouth out and waiting for several minutes, I end this "Saturday Sacrament" from Intrigue with their "What's the buzz?" flavor, which is honey. Biting off half a truffle, I let it melt in my mouth. I got a very nice cocoa buzz, but to be honest, as I always am in everything I write for you, Sisters and Brothers, I couldn't taste any honey flavor in this truffle; in fact, no hint of the sweetness that one would expect. Not that the taste was bad, but it wasn't what I was expecting from the label.

Overall, the texture was very interesting, and the truffles melted very easily in my mouth, each time delivering a bit of chocolate buzz, as we wish. However, the lack of other scents when I first opened the foils for most of the pieces was disappointing to one of my five senses. Some of the flavors were not to my liking, but that is to be expected with any assortment, Sisters and Brothers. I did really like the "Cabernet-Merlot," the "Tuaca," and the "Lemon Zesty" best of all of them.

This review is merely 1/7th of the possible flavors from Intrigue. If you want to try these or other flavors, you order them in boxes of 6, 20 or 48 pieces here. Flavors may change over the course of a year, so don't be surprised if the website is updated or be afraid to call them to find out what your choices are. Remember, Sisters and Brothers, if you get these eat them quickly and store them in a refrigerator, because without the ganache they will lose their full flavor sooner.

Sisters and Brothers, may you too take the time to slowly appreciate what the Divine and human ingenuity have offered you in chocolate.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Attention UK Readers

If you are in the UK or live close to the UK, you may have a wonderful opportunity to advance the cause of chocolate, Sisters and Brothers.

A study in Scotland is looking for volunteers. These volunteers will be studied to see how dark chocolate affects blood. You must be 18 to 70 years old. This study seems to be geared toward figuring out what is and is not healthy about dark chocolate not to promote it so much as to then add those chemicals to other food for similar benefits without concern for fat and sugars.

So go check it out and let me know if you get into the study.

Sisters and Brothers, may you too take the time to slowly appreciate what the Divine and human ingenuity have offered you in chocolate.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Offering from Intentional Chocolate

Intentional Chocolate is a company we can get behind here at The Chocolate Cult, Sisters and Brothers. Even before I taste their product, I can see they care about not just chocolate but also about the world.

Their samples came in a simply box, the exact size needed and with natural, biodegradable materials as padding. If you look at their website you can see that their company philosophy fits very well with our own Path. Please give them a look and on a future Saturday Sacrament I will reveal their worthiness.

Sisters and Brothers, may you too take the time to slowly appreciate what the Divine and human ingenuity have offered you in chocolate.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Do You Need More Reasons to Eat Dark Chocolate?

If so, then this article from Consumer Underground might give you not 22 but 29 reasons to do so. Sisters and Brothers, let just look at a few of these reasons together then I urge you to think about the others on your own.

First the article lists 7 reason that deal with aging. Aging is a big issue in our modern western world but is it an issue for the right reasons? This list does not go into what your Chocolate Priestess thinks are superficial reasons but instead a lot of basic body building block reasons such as cell function and various systems we have in our bodies. Therefore, whether or not these reasons are proved, they at least are not superficial.

The second part of the article discusses 22 advantages to eating dark chocolate daily. The only problem here that I see in terms of the benefits is that no where does it give specifics.

These are the questions I want answered:

How dark should this dark chocolate be?

What should or should not be added to it?

How much of the chocolate is it necessary or healthy to consume?

How long does it take for these benefits to demonstrate themselves?

Does it work the same in all people or are there factors that increase or decrease benefits?

Are there any possible negative side effects?

If any study out there can answer these questions and I can find it, I will share it with you, Sisters and Brothers. Until then remember to use chocolate in moderation and with an eye toward physical, emotional, and spiritual health.

Sisters and Brothers, may you too take the time to slowly appreciate what the Divine and human ingenuity have offered you in chocolate.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Free Ice Cream Day -- April 21, 2009

For some time, Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream has offered "free ice cream" in their stores one day a year. This year it is Tuesday, April 21, 2009.

Sadly, Sisters and Brothers, in the town here your Chocolate Priestess lives there is no such store; it closed a few years back. Very odd in my opinion given I live in a college town. One by one though the multitude of ice cream parlors have closed down including some where they made their own ice cream right there in the store. I remember the dark chocolate ice cream one such venue made a few times a year and I made a special trip just to get it when it in stock.

It can be tricky to get something as cold as ice cream to really taste chocolaty but in my experience Ben & Jerry's does a decent job of it. So if you have one of their shops in your town, please go on Tuesday and get a free cone then reply to this post and tell me about so I can live vicariously through you as you live through me each Saturday Sacrament.

Sisters and Brothers, may you too take the time to slowly appreciate what the Divine and human ingenuity have offered you in chocolate.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Sacrament April 18, 2009


Today, Sisters and Brothers, I have been challenged by Cerreta's Fine Chocolates to determine their worthiness as a Sacrament for The Chocolate Cult. Their offering came in this lovely white box with a pink ribbon, very traditional looking and not like the silver boxes in the flyer they sent along. Actually, your Chocolate Priestess is quite pleased, because so many company boxes are brown today that the white makes it stick out. The fact that it reminds me of traditional chocolates also suggests to my mind that what is inside will be something to stir my memories and fill me with pleasure.

This offering is a challenge not because of the quality of Cerreta's Fine Chocolates but because the ample selection of Deluxe Chocolate Assortment does not have labels for each individual type. Some are rather obvious because they stand out in color or shape from the others. But this is one general complaint I have about the vast majority of most boxed assortment: Lack of a clear label. Some companies have a map, and each piece is in a particular place. Others use different colors of wrapping to distinct the pieces. Others use a unique design for each piece or a particular embossed figure on the top of the candy. Given not only individual tastes but also the specter of allergies, such clarity is always helpful.

I did receive a "Nutrition Fact Sheet," which lists 38 types of chocolate this selection may contain. I can see 10 different pieces as you can see in this photograph, but some of these may only differ on the inside. You'll have to come on this journey with me, Sisters and Brothers, and see what Cerreta has to offer.

I approach this offering a full hour after consuming any other food or drink and after thoroughly cleansing my palate. This will allow me to taste and feel only the chocolate confections, untainted by anything else. Remember this is always how we must use chocolate when we use it as a method to connect to the Divine, Sisters and Brothers.

After cutting open the pink ribbon — I couldn't get it to neatly unknot — I found a large selection of confections. Each piece is wrapped in heavy plastic wrap or sealed in a plastic sheath, both easily unwrapped. I'm going to start with the "French Mint," the only labeled piece in the box. The scent of mint wafts up as I open it to reveal a 1.25 X .70 X .70 rectangle of green candy with two ridges along the top. Biting 1/3 of it shows that inside there is a chocolate center. The mint tingles in my mouth and tongue as I chew and overwhelms any chocolate flavor. The second bite I let melt slowly on my tongue, the top and sides melting first; it takes about 3 minutes for the entire bite to melt. I chew the third piece up slowly, letting it melt a bit. I think letting it melt allows the full chocolate potential out, but overall there is more mint than chocolate rush in this type. Five pieces of the "French Mint" came in my box.

Another piece I think I can clearly identify is the "Pink Pistachio." I'm not a fan of pistachio, so instead of letting that bias me, I'll just focus on what it looks and smells like instead of the taste. It is a bright pink, and on the bottom and sides you can see glimpses of the green of the nut. It doesn't smell like anything, really, other than generic candy covering, which may or may not be white chocolate. Three pieces of these came in the box.

The next type must be the "White Peanut Cluster," because the only similar option on the nutritional list is a yogurt raisin cluster, and I neither see nor smell raisins. This is the same size as the pistachio piece, 1.25 diameter and .75 tall, with a similar bumpy surface. It has that white chocolate almost-non-smell to it but no peanut scent. As I bite it in half I definitely taste the peanuts, which are salted and crunch with each chew. The salt and the peanuts are a nice mix with the white chocolate flavor. Letting the second piece melt in my mouth takes about three minutes ... this is very slow-melting chocolate. The melting increases the intensity of the white chocolate, but none of the rush we get with milk or better yet dark chocolate. The taste is smooth, and even after the coating itself is gone it mingles with the peanuts. Three of these candies came in my box.

There are three more pieces of white chocolate in my box, two 1.25 X 1.25 X .75 inches, and one odd shaped piece. Yet I see no more white chocolate listed on the nutritional sheet. So I shall just have to taste to try and figure them out. Other than the shapes, each piece has a dark chocolate drizzle over it, but neither has a particular scent beyond the white chocolate itself. I taste the odd-shaped piece first; it squishes down softly to reveal a caramel inside. Running my tongue over it, I taste the bite of vanilla, so this must be the "Vanilla Caramel" covered in white chocolate. To explore the flavors further I let the second bite melt in my mouth, and this time it does not take as long. There is a definite rush from my mouth to my eyes as the vanilla caramel slowly blends with the covering this way. The caramel itself is very sticky, adhering to my teeth.

The other white chocolate confection is also soft when I bite into it. The center is oatmeal in color and has a nutty cream taste that I can't place ever after a few bites. The bitter aftertaste seems a bit pecan-like in nature, but I can't tell from my list what these would be. Consultation with the White Chocolate Acolyte affirms this conclusion. Frankly there isn't a cocoa taste to this one at all. I will assume the second piece that looks like this is the same type.

A lonely 1 x .75 x .5 inch piece is the next I want to try and identify. The coating is slightly darker than the milk chocolate pieces but not nearly as dark as those I'm sure are dark chocolate. It has a sort of fruity scent when I bring it up to my nose to sniff. It is soft and has that vanilla bite to it, so this must be the "Milk Chocolate Caramel." As with the vanilla variety, the chocolate coating melts quickly in my mouth for the second bite and leaves behind the sticky caramel. Chewing slowly allows both flavors to mingle deliciously.

Three hours after I started today's "Saturday Sacrament" I am now ready to try these little boots; the box had three cowboy boot shaped chocolates from Cerreta's "Arizona Western Collection" of products. These are finely detailed; the etched lines of leather show up on one side of the candy, and it measures 1.25 inches across the foot and rises to 1.9 inches from heel to calf. This has the unmistakable bitterness of darker chocolate when I breathe it in. It also melts a bit in my fingertips, suggesting a higher, purer, chocolate content. I bite off the toe of the boot to find simple, pure dark chocolate that, as it melts on my tongue, immediately kicks my mind and senses into high gear. The boot is easily four bites, each one's bitterness building on the aftertaste and each rush increasing as my breath quickens and my eyes flutter in delight. Oddly, just letting it melt as I do with the second bite does not increase the flavor or the rush — I'm not sure why; I can only reveal what the chocolate does for me as I meditate upon each bite, each piece. Ah, this, Sisters and Brothers, this is the rush we look for here in The Chocolate Cult.

Shaped exactly like the "French Mints" were four milk chocolate bars in the box. These have a very milk chocolate scent them, with no hint through the brown covering of what might lie inside. Biting makes a soft snap, and I find a firm inside exactly like the mint ones. I think this is milk chocolate over more milk chocolate, perhaps the "Just Chocolate" type on the nutrition sheet. It melts quickly, releasing enough of the Sacred Substance that it tingles my mouth and eyes for a moment until it disappears to slip into my body. Each of the three bites that make up this piece taste the same, though a bit of a sweet aftertaste lingers. The slight buzz here may be useful to those of us who prefer milk chocolate in our Sacraments.

I received 5 dark chocolate mounds measuring 1.25 in diameter and .6 inches tall. Remember, Sisters and Brothers, I'm doing this sampling to help you choose appropriate Sacraments, and since I can't tell if these are different flavors, I'm only going to eat one — I must also practice moderation or risk being a heretic in my own cult. This piece has a sharp fruity scent to it, so I take a small first bite to try and suss out what it can be. Inside is a dark cream that does not have much of a fruit flavor but a deep, rich bitterness. I take a bigger bite, letting it melt. Has my nose misled me? The other taste is very subtle, so subtle that I can't decipher it, so I must simply enjoy the mild rush of the dark cocoa as it melts on my tongue. Whatever this mystery flavor is, it cancels the normal bitter aftertaste.

8 milk chocolate mounds of the same size as the above confections were also in my box. This one has a sort of nutty taste so I'm glad I choose it rather than let the Milk Chocolate Acolyte try it — he has a tree nut allergy. Ah, but Sisters and Brothers, what smells like a nut but is not a nut? A peanut! I believe this is the "Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Piaaza" on the list. The peanut butter is smooth and creamy; it blends neatly with the milk chocolate and squishes between my teeth and onto my tongue with ease. The peanut butter taste, though, overwhelms the chocolate, and this, your Chocolate Priestess has noticed, is often the case when the two flavors are combined.

There may be other flavors in the little milk and dark chocolate mounds, but honestly I am floating so much now that I do not think it wise to continue with the sampling at this time. Perhaps in the future I will reveal more flavors from Cerreta's.

(There is one single caramel in the box, but it could be pecan or walnut according to my list — I think it's the walnut, though, based on the flavor. Very sticky like the "Vanilla Caramel" was. No chocolate, so not really of interest in this review for The Chocolate Cult.)

Overall these confections from Cerreta's Fine Chocolates are smooth to the touch unless purposely textured, not greasy, and also have a slow melt to them, suggesting something may be added to increase their heat resistance. The company website says they get their chocolates from Guittard Chocolate, so you may want to look there for further information. Per piece this selection has very little cholesterol, 0 mg for most of them, and very little sodium, though a good amount of saturated fat, as we might expect in chocolate. One more reason to practice moderation with the Divine Substance. I think these are fine candies, and some of the types of chocolates I sampled could serve you well as Sacraments to help you along your Path to the Divine. Your Chocolate Priestess feels like she is floating after this five and a half hour journey through Cerreta's Fine Chocolates.

Sisters and Brothers, may you too take the time to slowly appreciate what the Divine and human ingenuity have offered you in chocolate.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Pistachio Problems & Sacramental Offerings

In recent weeks, several chocolatiers have recalled products that may contain Pistachios. While your Chocolate Priestess is not, herself, a big fan of these particular nuts, they are used in several chocolate confections that you may enjoy.

Below are some links to recent recalls. These are by no means the full account nor should you ignore your own ability to keep up on recalls.

Lake Champlain Chocolates

Harry and David

Wegmans

Astor Chocolate

Setton International Foods

Today I also received an offering from Intrigue Chocolates that I will be reviewing as soon as I can in a Saturday Sacrament. Probably early May if not late April.

Sisters and Brothers, may you too take the time to slowly appreciate what the Divine and human ingenuity have offered you in chocolate.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Organic Chocolate Market

Today's article is about how organic chocolate and cocoa are gaining shares in the marketplace.

Your Chocolate Priestess thinks this article is well-balanced, pointing out many of the concerns on both sides of the organic debate but I want to restate a few points I've made previously.

Organic can mean a lot of things, legal definitions vary from nation to nation, sometimes between regions within nations as well. Organic is not the same as healthy or safe. As someone who suffers from many allergies I can witness that something which is organic may not be the best for me at all times.

However, since we use chocolate as part of our lives on many levels, both spiritual and mundane, we should be concerned about any potential damage done to the land where cocoa beans are grown and to the lives of those growing it. Often times, organic companies are also concerned with these issues so we should consider them when we buy and use chocolate products. But do so in an informed matter. Do not simply buy because it says "organic" but because you've looked into the company.

Sisters and Brothers, may you too take the time to slowly appreciate what the Divine and human ingenuity have offered you in chocolate.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Lecture about Chocolate

For any Sisters and Brothers in Mississippi near Millsaps College, you can go hear a lecture about the history of chocolate on Thursday, April 16, 2009.

This article about it gives some highlights that Jeff Hurst will lay out in his lecture. A biochemist, Hurst has worked for Hershey, one of the biggest chocolate companies in the world, for over three decades. He may have some knowledge to share though your Chocolate Priestess is a bit surprised it's about history and not about the chemistry of chocolate. Perhaps his love of chocolate turned into a love of history and that is not a problem at all.

Sisters and Brothers, may you too take the time to slowly appreciate what the Divine and human ingenuity have offered you in chocolate.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Two More Company Offerings

Today, your Chocolate Priestess, was so happy that two companies sent her more samples to try for our Saturday Sacraments.

Emily's Chocolates sent four packets of their chocolate covered fruit and nuts while Seattle Chocolates sent 14 samples in their box. I shall be revealing the worthiness of their offerings for many months to come so make sure you check each Saturday and that you spread the Word of Chocolate to your family and friends, Sisters and Brothers.

Hoffman's Chocolates, which I have not received an offering from, is in the news today for being a good citizen on Easter. They donated the sales from their chocolate on this past Sunday to the food bank which helps their entire community. Good job on combining the business of chocolate with the divine journey.

Sisters and Brothers, may you too take the time to slowly appreciate what the Divine and human ingenuity have offered you in chocolate.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Dogs and Chocolate Again

I've touched upon this subject before, Sisters and Brothers, but this article has a bit more details for those of us who are dog owners and dog lovers.

Since we should be using chocolate as part of our spiritual journey, though I know many of you ate the mass holiday treats yesterday (as did your Chocolate Priestess, I must confess), we shouldn't casual share it with others especially non-humans. Always be aware of what you want to share or what your pet seems to be asking for could do to them. To not be fully aware risks harming them and that will be a terrible set back on your journey toward the Divine.

Sisters and Brothers, may you too take the time to slowly appreciate what the Divine and human ingenuity have offered you in chocolate.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Saturday Sacrament, April 11, 2009


Today, Sisters and Brothers, I will reveal the nature of one of the eleven offerings sent by Theo Chocolate. Before that I want to talk briefly about an issue I discussed yesterday: Choosing your chocolate also on the basis of the maker's social agenda. When the box of offerings from Theo Chocolate arrived, it was packed in a very environmentally conscious way. The boxes themselves could be recycled by my bi-weekly pick-up program. The "peanuts" they were packed with were made of starch, biodegradable. But Theo Chocolate goes beyond just package concerns and buys products grown under what is called "fair trade" conditions. They also use a lot of organic ingredients, but as I have said before, organic is not the same as healthy, and does not necessarily mean good farming practices, which is a complicated issue, this former Iowan can tell you. If these social and environmental issues are important to you, then Theo Chocolate, which can be found in many co-ops and organic markets, may be something you want to look for.

Today we are going to immerse ourselves in the Enrobed Nib Brittle. A 4 oz. portion comes in a sealed bag containing what I suspect is a varying number of pieces, though this bag contained 10 pieces of different shapes, as you can see in the next picture. The bag was sealed firmly, so I had to use scissors to cut it open. As soon as I did so the aroma of dark chocolate hit me full on, and I couldn't help but sigh in anticipation. Looking at the label I see 10 ingredients went into this product; none of them are artificial or added preservatives. I could not find any further information about the nutrition in this, but if you follow the Path purposely and with moderation, I don't think it will harm you.

The initial scent of dark chocolate dissipates just a bit after the bag has been open for about half an hour. The pieces are a dark brown, smooth, not greasy to touch, and do not melt immediately when I hold one. Biting into one there is an immediate crunch that continues as I chew it. The rush of dark chocolate hits my senses immediately, while the bitterness, tinged with just a slight hint of sweetness, lingers on my tongue. This is not a product for anyone who dislikes higher cocoa content.

The second bit snaps off, and I let it sit on my tongue to see how quickly it melts and how much of a rush I can experience. The chocolate coating melts slowly to reveal the hard core, which seems to have a toffee-like taste to it, though it is not toffee and contains no tree nuts. This inner section will not melt, so I crunch it up to get a different taste again, almost nutlike, and a very rough and grainy texture, but really no cocoa rush.

The third piece confirms that the best way to use this product is to crunch it slowly, letting the outer shell melt a bit, but mixing it with the inner solids. This makes my mouth water and my eyes blink from the Divine Substance as I fully take it in through all my senses, appreciating each crunch. The taste again lingers for many minutes after this bite.

The number of bites per piece of Enrobed Nib Brittle will depend on its size. This revelation used one of the smaller-sized pieces, but I know one of the larger pieces could easily be four to five bites. Take it slowly, enjoy each bite, and soak up each texture and flavor fully before moving on to the next piece. If you do this, then Theo Chocolate has offered you a worthy Sacrament for your Saturdays.

Sisters and Brothers, may you too take the time to slowly appreciate what the Divine and human ingenuity have offered you in chocolate.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Companies Need to Think Long-Term

Another company has announced it will try and use better practices to acquire the cocoa it uses to make it's chocolate products, this time Mars a major USA player in the business.

Sister and Brothers, is 2020 the best this huge company can do? I think not, considering there are other, often smaller chocolatiers who do follow fair trade and sustainable practices all ready. A huge company such as Mars could very well simply tell it's cocoa farmers "you will do things this way" and they could greatly influence such practices.

Let's think for a moment about other things chocolate companies could do as well for the environment but also their bottom line. As I get more and more offerings coming in for me to review, I get a lot of extra packing materials. Some is recyclable and biodegradable but frankly not nearly enough of it. Sure, the Styrofoam peanuts are cheap but if they fill up more and more land that's less land to grow the Sacred Bean on and thus higher and higher price for us who wish to enjoy or use chocolate. Do you really need to pack things in such huge boxes or boxes inside of boxes? I do wish more chocolatiers thought about this because their decisions will impact the future of their production and our abilities to buy their candies, drinks, and ingredients. In my reviews I will always let you know what companies take all these things into consideration so you can make the wisest choices.

While I agree that companies like Mars and Cadbury and others are taking a good first step, they need to do more. If you agree, think about writing to them and letting them know how you feel. Money talks in this world.

Sisters and Brothers, may you too take the time to slowly appreciate what the Divine and human ingenuity have offered you in chocolate.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Four submissions for the Sacraments

I want to highlight four companies that have sent your Chocolate Priestess sample of their work for future Saturday Sacraments. In case you want to check them out, please do click on their linked names.

Yesterday I received offerings from Burst's Chocolates and Krause's Chocolates.

Today I received multiple samples from Monica's Chocolates and Wiseman House Fine Chocolates.

I look forward to revealing these offerings and potential Saturday Sacraments to you all, Sisters and Brothers, in the weeks ahead. Until then, please do tell your fellow chocolate lovers about this blog and help spread our word.

Sisters and Brothers, may you too take the time to slowly appreciate what the Divine and human ingenuity have offered you in chocolate.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Pop Guide to Chocolate

Today your Chocolate Priestess found an article that very simply describes several types of chocolates and gives tips on how to use them. This simple guide may be of interest to many of us who cook and bake with chocolate as well a use it on our spiritual journey.

Note however that their first statement about chocolate is incorrect as we have previously noted: White chocolate is indeed chocolate because it does use part of the cocoa bean. We will never allow ourselves, Sisters and Brothers, to embrace the evils of religious splintering that so many groups fall prey to. All those who use any type of chocolate are welcomed to our fold.

Sisters and Brothers, may you too take the time to slowly appreciate what the Divine and human ingenuity have offered you in chocolate.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

The Scent of Chocolate is Not Enough

We all wish, Sisters and Brothers, that we could have our chocolate, connect with the Divine, and do it all in a very healthy way. If this Le Whif product isn't a joke, it is still not the way of The Chocolate Cult.

Yes, as you see in my reviews and Saturday Sacraments, the scent of chocolate is an important part of the Divine Substance but it is only one of the five scents we need to use in our journey. The scent of chocolate should make us desire to feel, see, hear and taste it as well so I fear this over priced product, if real, may only lead people astray and tempt them into eating more chocolate of dubious quality or in immoderate quantities. I can not review this product since I do not have it but at the level of information I was able to gleam I do hope it is a joke and not merely a ways to profit from chocolate without concerns for the appropriate of chocolate and it's many forms.

Sisters and Brothers, may you too take the time to slowly appreciate what the Divine and human ingenuity have offered you in chocolate.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Healthy Dark Chocolate

A review of health claims about dark chocolate appeared today in a newspaper. Contrary to the title of this piece, not much insight is given to the spiritual benefits of dark chocolate but then that's why we are here, Sisters and Brothers.

We may be delighted when we read such things but once more we see that the mass media news services provide us with very little useful information. This one at least did mention that you need at least 70% cocoa to be beneficial but it did not say how much chocolate in terms of ounces provide the benefits it vaguely mentions. Until such information is readily available we need to always be thinking of moderation when we use the Sacred Substance.

Sisters and Brothers, may you too take the time to slowly appreciate what the Divine and human ingenuity have offered you in chocolate.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

The Cost of Dark Chocolate

You may have noticed what this news article about the price of dark chocolate claims is shocking news: Dark Chocolate Costs More. As long as your Chocolate Priestess can remember, Sisters and Brothers, it has always cost more. The reason is that instead of supplementing a dark chocolate candy with added less expensive ingredients, you use more of the cocoa bean. These beans can only be grown in certain regions and as the climate changes this will change, we can only hope for more areas being cocoa producing friendly but that may be an unrealistic hope. Also as the movement for fair trade and business practices increases so too with the price of products increase.

Please don't let this concern. Remember, always, that when you use chocolate products as one method by which to connect more closely with the Divine that you should do this purposely. This means not eating a lot, eating it slowly and thinking about where it came from and the philosophy or mission of the company which made it. If you do all of that, the individual prices cease to be so very important.

Sisters and Brothers, may you too take the time to slowly appreciate what the Divine and human ingenuity have offered you in chocolate.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Saturday Sacrament, April 4, 2009


Today, Sisters and Brothers, I will reveal the nature of samples sent by a delightfully named company, Cowgirl Chocolates, and its potential as a Saturday Sacrament. It was delivered to me wrapped in lovely red tissue paper, as you can see, with this powerful company logo on it. The box itself is larger than the sacred dish, so I am anxious to see what is inside. Tissue paper tears so easily that I could rush my way through the unwrapping, but each step in our worship should be purposeful, so I go slowly, feeling the paper tear and slip between my fingers, my nose and eyes ready for any sensation which may be revealed to me.

Inside is a sturdy red box with a black ribbon, a metallic decal shaped like a cowgirl hat, and a blank gift tag that you could use to label it before giving it to someone else. Oh, Sisters and Brothers, there will be an extra photograph today, so you can enjoy this experience with me. It takes a few moments to figure out how to unwrap the black ribbon, and I discover that the decal can be saved, as can the ribbon and box itself.

Inside are 9 out of the 10 "Nothin' Fancy Truffle Assortment" flavors that they sell. There are two categories of truffles here: Spicy and Mild. Since I do want to reveal each flavor to you, this will be a long post written over the course of the entire day, so that you can get a feel for each one.
I'm going to save the caramel for last, since it is not a chocolate and therefore not of true use as a Saturday Sacrament. But which truffle flavor do I begin with? Since your Chocolate Priestess has not had Spicy truffles before, I'll begin my worship there, but I still have four choices: Raspberry Dark Chocolate, Double Dark Chocolate, Hazelnut Milk Chocolate, and Cappuccino. To focus on the chocolate itself, separating it from other flavors, I'll start with Double Dark Chocolate, which is color-coded in a metallic gold plastic wrapper.

The wrapper twists off easily, and the scent of dark chocolate strikes my nose as I open it. The piece is a simple half-globe, as you'd expect with a truffle, and there is an embossed floral pattern on the top. Bending closer, I breathe in more of the scent, trying to determine if I sense anything beyond the chocolate, and there is a hint of something I can't quite define. I could easily eat this in one bite, but our goal, Sisters and Brothers, is to fully experience each chocolate, so I will take it in two bites. The outer solid layer snaps under my teeth, and I let the bite rest on my tongue. At the front of my tongue it tastes bitter and slightly sweet, but as it melts the spice hits the back of my tongue and throat, making my eyes water. This is a rush indeed, but I can't tell if this is the cayenne pepper or habanero pepper they use in the "Spicy" truffles. The second bite's melting lets me determine that the spiciness is mostly in the semi-soft center of the piece, and as I work to let it melt more slowly, the bitterness, sweetness and spice blend together. Holding it at the front of my mouth also decreases the spicy sensation. If I don't drink water or rinse out my mouth, the spicy tingle mixed with lingering dark chocolate taste lasts for over 20 minutes.

I don't want to pass any judgements yet, so I'll try the copper-wrapped cappuccino flavor next. Warning: I'm not a fan of coffee, so I have to focus on the chocolate as I reveal this and not let my biases interfere with this report, Sisters and Brothers. The piece looks identical to the previous truffle, but this time the slight scent is more coffee than chocolate, but not overwhelmingly so. Breathing it in more deeply increases the coffee scent. Again I'll take just half the truffle in this first bite. The outer chocolate shell tastes like it has less cocoa content, and it crunches as my mouth is overwhelmed by the spice and coffee flavor, so I must chew it. The inner semi-solid truffle part is light in color and contains the greatest concentration of coffee scent and taste. The physical rush from this truffle is three-fold: first, the most mild is the chocolate itself, then the coffee, and finally the spice. This is very intense to your Chocolate Priestess, who has to drink some water after it.

How intense are Cowgirl Chocolates' other spicy truffles? Wrapped in metallic red plastic is a Raspberry Dark Chocolate, which is two-tone in color, the bottom part dark and the upper part lighter. There is a definite raspberry scent that is more apparent in the lighter chocolate section when I breathe in the scent closely. A light snap reveals the dark purplish inside, and this one is not as spicy as the others. I'm thinking the fruit calms it a bit, but it is still intense on the back of my tongue and my throat. The final spicy truffle is Hazelnut Milk Chocolate, which comes in a dark blue wrapper. The chocolate here is a light color, of course, and the scent is really more hazelnut than chocolate. The taste is like the coloring and scent — light chocolate, nutty, then a smack of spice. It's like Nutella that kicks you in the head.

A bit too much spice for your Chocolate Priestess, Sisters and Brothers, so I grab some skim milk to cut the pepper flavor down in my mouth and throat, then rinse it all out with water again before turning to the "mild truffles." I have one of each of Cowgirl Chocolates' four flavors: Double Dark Chocolate again, Milk Chocolate, Ivory Orange, and Raspberry Lemon. I'll start with the flavor I'm least attracted to and work my way to the greatest attraction.

The Raspberry Lemon is in a metallic fuschia red wrapper that is easiest to differentiate from the spicy version's wrapper under good lighting. The raspberry scent even comes through the foil before I unwrap it. The truffle is dark in color but lacks the embossed floral design at the top. The fruit overwhelms the scent, and that remains true of the taste if you just chew the truffle. The interior purplish cream is less firm than the spicy variety's as well. When I let the second bite melt in my mouth, the fruit and dark chocolate mix, the chocolate sending tiny tingles up my sinuses and into my eyes, making me sigh in delight. No unpleasant or lingering aftertaste, but I rinse my mouth out with water and wait 20 minutes before the next piece.

Next I try the Ivory Orange piece, wrapped logically enough in an orange wrapper — again, compare it in the light to tell it apart from the Cappuccino's copper wrapper, but this also has a lemon scent, even in the wrapper. This piece is tri-colored, with a milk chocolate top embossed with the floral symbol, 80% white chocolate, and a milk chocolate bottom. The orange-lemon scent is light, but there isn't much chocolate scent. The outer layer of chocolate is thin, making no noise when I bite into it. The inner truffle layer is the same color as the milk chocolate outside. Overall this piece has a very mild taste, lacking in much beyond the light orange-lemon flavoring.

Silver metallic plastic covers the milk chocolate truffle, and unwrapping it, 20 minutes after I've tested the previous piece, reveals a piece of chocolate identical in appearance to the Raspberry Lemon piece, but without the fruit scent. The chocolate scent is very, very light, even when I breathe it in deeply. Oops, be careful, or you might discover it melts a bit from touching the tip of your nose. Biting into it makes a very soft snapping sound. The flavor is simple, the semi-soft center and the shell matching perfectly. Letting it melt in my mouth does not add to any rush that we hope to get from chocolate when we use it for Saturday Sacraments.

This leaves me with the aqua-wrapped Double Dark Chocolate. In general, darker chocolates offer us a more intense rush, a greater push down our path toward the Divine, Sisters and Brothers. Opening the foil reveals a dark piece with the floral-embossed symbol again. The dark chocolate scent is subtle and strengthens when I bite into it with a snap. The center is as dark as the coating, and both melt in my mouth, the dark flavors building, making my eyes flutter a bit. Ah, this, this, is the rush we have been looking for, Sisters and Brothers. Not quite as strong as other chocolates we have had, but definitely worthy of consideration for the Saturday Sacraments in your own worship.

(As an aside, the Habanero Caramel is both creamy and spicy; the caramel taste is very light, but sadly it is not chocolate.)

Cowgirl Chocolates offers a good deal of variety in this one box at a price that seems average for the chocolatiers in my own hometown for truffles of this quality. In terms of our journey, Sisters and Brothers, I think the mild flavors are more useful. It is true that the spice adds an extra kick, but it also is a different physical sensation than what we are looking for when we attempt to use chocolate as a method of connecting with the Divine. When you consume chocolate for other reasons, and I know that you do, then the spicy variety is certainly a unique experience you should try at least once.

Sisters and Brothers, may you too take the time to slowly appreciate what the Divine and human ingenuity have offered you in chocolate.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Samples and Math?

Montana Tom's Chocolate Factory has sent your Chocolate Priestess four of their products to try for our Saturday Sacraments. This company is in Montana and they sent me this cute assortment in the mail. I love forward to revealing these to you all, Sisters and Brothers, in future Saturday Sacraments.

In other news, I saw this post that the Divine Substance urged me to share with you all. Does chocolate improve your skills with math? Let's always be wary of reports of studies and surveys in the news but this does suggest that the researchers here will continue to study the issue and use several variable to sort out what is going on with the flavanols in chocolate and the human brain. Since we are not told the amount of flavanols in the chocolate most of us consume I cannot urge to try this yourself but if you remember to use the Sacred Substance in moderation, it can't hurt.

Sisters and Brothers, may you too take the time to slowly appreciate what the Divine and human ingenuity have offered you in chocolate.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Trū Chocolate Dietary Aid

Your Chocolate Priestess debated how to review this product. Given that I was only sent two pieces of Trū Chocolate, I couldn't seriously test the claims that it is an aid to weight loss, given that published testimonials about its effectiveness were based on a minimum of 5 days, or 15-45 pieces of the product. However, since this is not marketed as candy or comfort food, it would not fall under the category of potential Sacrament either. I decided to give the product a try today before breakfast and lunch to see how it tasted and if it had any impact at all on how much I wanted to eat.

The Trū Chocolate I was sent was individually wrapped in a dark golden foil that opened easily to reveal a 1.5 inch diameter coin of chocolate with a crosshatch pattern of lines on it ... too small to get a good picture of, but if you click on the link you can see it. It smelled just like chocolate and did not feel waxy to my fingertips.

I used the product before breakfast according to the directions I was sent, eating it and drinking 8 oz. of water 10 minutes before eating anything else. The directions also warn against taking prescription medication too close to the chocolate, but this wasn't an issue for your Chocolate Priestess at this time. Given the scent of the chocolate, I thought it would be bitter, but the first bite was very smooth and creamy. Over the course of the next two bites the taste did build up, and it became more bitter, as I had expected given the strength of the scent. That flavor lingered even 45 minutes after taking it and after I ate something else for breakfast.

For lunch I did the same thing, though this time the chocolate tasted a bit more bitter to me. Using it before lunch felt more difficult to me, since I'm always a bit rushed with my writing and getting in new samples of chocolates as well as other more mundane matters. I did make myself use it exactly as directed so that my experiment would be honest and fair.

Yes, the water and the chocolate did make me less hungry, but which one of these is truly responsible for that feeling? The fact is that simply drinking water before you eat will give your stomach less room for other food and drinks, just as having soup as a starter course means you can serve less in the following courses. It's standard advice to drink water before you eat to curb your cravings. So what does the Trū Chocolate add to this water that helps curb cravings or hunger more? For me, I think it did help the cravings a bit, because I drink water all the time — as I have said repeatedly, Sisters and Brothers, it's a great cleanser, not just before chocolate but all the time, for our bodies. I did feel a difference, but that could also be the calories too and not specifically the chocolate itself. I don't honestly have enough samples to test it for several months, as would be required. If you've tried it for months, let me know how that worked for you.

There is a list of ingredients on the website, but overall the health claims are rather vague. Since this isn't promoted as a food, there is no legal requirement for a nutritional label on the above link from which I was sent these samples, so I went to another site listed on the product itself: TruNutrition.com, the official website for the product. Here I found more detailed information about the product, including "nutrition facts" in that label format that we are all used to seeing on foods in the USA. Word of caution: one of these has 3g of saturated fat, so if you are eating 3-9 of these a day, that's 9-27g of saturated fat a day. It also has very little fiber and protein, so be aware of that when choosing other foods for your meals.

Given all this information and the limited samples I had, I can't back any health or weight-loss claims. It tasted fine, and if you believe that having a little something before you eat might help you lose weight, you now have the information you need to try this out. Using this product does not restrict you as many diet plans do, so it probably isn't as difficult to use as, let's say, cutting out most carbs or eating only raw foods may become over time. Your Chocolate Priestess does strongly suggest that if you decide to try this you strictly follow the guidelines for its use, otherwise you cannot be giving it an honest test yourself. Also, given the amount you'll need to use, I don't think you should consume other chocolate products but instead focus on including proteins, fibers and other nutrients in your diet to supplement it.

Sisters and Brothers, may you too take the time to slowly appreciate what the Divine and human ingenuity have offered you in chocolate.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

1000 Pages About Chocolate Can't Be Wrong

An article from the New York Times, mentions a new book about chocolate briefly. I believe, though the article does not list the authors that it must be this book by Louis E. Grivetti and Howard-Yana Shapiro. As with most academic books, trust me, Sisters and Brothers, as a PhD in history herself, your Chocolate Priestess knows these things, this is an expensive book. However if you think about it having 1000 pages then that's only 10¢ a page at it's full price. Again I haven't read this but I wanted to bring it to your attention so you can check it out in your local library or if you have that kind of money buy it yourself.

Sisters and Brothers, may you too take the time to slowly appreciate what the Divine and human ingenuity have offered you in chocolate.