Friday, October 24, 2014

Chocolate Rocks - Oct. 24, 2014

Chocolate(s) of the Day: 

Chocolate Rocks
Good
Weight: .5 oz. (14.1 g.) (estimate) in 1 serving
Calories: 75 calories (estimate) in 1 serving
Cost: N/A - gift from friend (Thank you Don)
Purchased from: N/A - gift from friend

As a follow-up to the Chocolate Legos featured yesterday, today's chocolate rocks could also be used as a construction material, or perhaps landscaping.

These colorful, and realistic looking, pebbles were solid chocolate on the inside.

Chocolatiers that specialize in these chocolate pebbles include Fiesta Candy (Chocolate Rocks) and Kimmie Candy Company (ChocoRocks).


Thursday, October 23, 2014

Chocolat Uzma Sharif - Chocolate Legos - Oct. 23, 2014

Chocolate of the Day: 

Chocolat Uzma Sharif
Chocolate Legos
1.) Salmon - Good + - Very Good
2.) Yellow - Good +
3.) Blue - Good - Good +
Weight: 4.5 oz. (137 g.) (estimate) for 10 pieces/ 4.95 oz. (140? g.) (estimate) for total container
Calories: 695 calories (estimate) for 10 pieces
Cost: N/A - gift from friend (Thank you Toni!)
Purchased from: N/A - gift from a friend (who bought in Chicago, IL)

If you're a creative tinkerer, or you've wondered if you could construct a house using chocolate building materials, today's chocolate is for you.

Life would be sweeter if temporary houses could be made from chocolate Legos or Lincoln Logs. Like ice castles, they may not last long, but they'd be fun to build.

I became intrigued with chocolate Legos when a friend (Melissa) posted a picture of some on Facebook. Think of the possibilities! I responded. Illustrator and designer, Akihiro Mizuuchi, explored this concept and built figures or characters from carefully molded chocolate Lego bricks, in different chocolate colors.

Today's Lego chocsimiles* came from Chocolat Uzma Sharif (Chicago, IL). Each colored brick was made from a different chocolate (salted milk, milk and dark chocolate), and was "painted" with a different color cocoa butter "paint." The salmon-colored salted milk chocolate bricks were my favorite.

*Chocsimiles = chocolate facsimiles of objects; in this case these Chocolate Legos were chocsimiles of the LEGO(R) brick(s) made by The Lego Group, a privately held company in Billund, Denmark.




Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Tate's Bake Shop - Gluten Free Brownie - Oct. 22, 2014

Chocolate of the Day: 

Tate's Bake Shop
Gluten Free Brownie
Good - Good +
Weight: 4 oz. (113 g.) in 1 package
Calories: 480 calories in 1 package
Cost: $27.00 for 1 box of 6 (+ shipping)
Purchased from: Tate's Bake Shop, online order

Today was Day #9 of Chocolate Brownie Theme Week.

This rich, substantial Gluten Free Brownie was from Tate's Bake Shop (Southampton, NY), and had a fudgy, dense and slightly chewy, semi-sweet chocolate texture and flavor.

The Brownie was part of a box of 6 individually-wrapped, gluten-free bars (3 Blondies and 3 Brownies). Tate's Bake Shop also offers a line of gluten-free cookies.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Tate's Bake Shop - Blondie - Oct. 21, 2014

Chocolate of the Day: 

Tate's Bake Shop
Blondie
Good - Good +
Weight: 4 oz. (113 g.) in 1 piece
Calories: 510 calories for 1 piece (3 servings)
Cost: $27.00 for box of 6 (+ shipping)
Purchased from: Tate's Bake Shop, online order

Today was Day #8 of Chocolate Brownie Theme Week.

I enjoyed Tate's Bake Shop Chocolate Chip Cookies so much that I wanted to include their Gluten-Free brownie bars this week, so I ordered some. And, once again, a 7-day theme week, has grown by a few days.

When I was young, my mom used to make butterscotch brownies. These were also called blonde brownies, or "blondies."

This Gluten Free Blondie from Tate's Bake Shop (Southampton, NY) contained 1.) brown sugar, 2.) butter and 3.) semi-sweet chocolate chips -- in that order, followed by a list of natural ingredients. Almond flour and walnut bits gave these Blondie a slightly nutty taste and texture.

At 510 calories for the whole blondie, this was not a low-calorie item. But then, it doesn't pretend to be. The label suggested that this very rich bar be divided into 3 servings. So, find a knife, cut this into thirds and try to resist eating all three pieces yourself. I dare you.

Monday, October 20, 2014

jcoco - edamame bar, brownie - Oct. 20, 2014

Chocolate of the Day: 

jcoco
(created by Jean Thompson, Seattle Chocolates)
edamame sea salt in milk chocolate bar
Good ++
Weight: 1 oz. (28 g.) / part of a 6 pack of jcoco small bars
Calories: 250 calories (estimate) = 1/3 bar (+ 1 brownie with pieces of bar)
Cost: N/A - gift from a friend (thank you Toni!) ($18.00)
Purchased from: N/A - gift from a friend

Today was Day #7 of Chocolate and Brownie Theme Week.

Edamame (green soybeans) may not be the first flavor that pops to mind when dreaming up a new brownie.

However, there is much to be said for chocolate desserts with a savory kick. And armed with this belief, I created today's Asian-themed brownie cookies. Say what you will, mixing these up was great fun.

To a gluten-free brownie mix, I added finely chopped black sesame crackers, sea salt, a dash of tamari sauce, and chopped up most of a jcoco* edamame sea salt in milk chocolate bar (after tasting this bar by itself). The non-GMO and kosher bar had a good buttery milk chocolate melt/texture with crunchy pieces of roasted edamame and a slight hint of sea salt and soy sauce**.

The brownie cookies were chewy, slightly sweet and slightly savory, and were topped with a few roasted edamame. They worked for me, but may not be everyone's favorite.

*The jcoco brand is part of Seattle Chocolate Company.
**This bar probably contained a trace of wheat from the small amount of soy sauce.



Sunday, October 19, 2014

thinkThin - Brownie Crunch protein bar - Oct. 19, 2014

Chocolate of the Day: 

thinkThin, LLC
Brownie Crunch - High Protein Bar
Good
Weight: 2.1 oz. (60 g.) in 1 bar
Calories: 230 calories in 1 bar
Cost: $1.79 for 1 bar
Purchased from: Trader Joe's, Palo Alto, CA

Today was Day #6 of Chocolate Brownie Theme Week.

I was pleasantly surprised by this Brownie Crunch High Protein Bar, distributed by thinkThin, LLC (Santa Monica, CA).

For a bar containing 20 grams of protein (a blend of whey and soy protein, casein) it was remarkably free of that slightly gritty texture and taste sometimes found in other such bars. It really did have a brownie taste, and I would say it had less crunch and more soft chew -- giving it more of a brownie-like texture.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Luna - Caramel Nut Brownie bar - Oct. 18, 2014

Chocolate of the Day: 

Luna
(Clif Bar and Company)
Caramel Nut Brownie
OK+ - Good
Weight: 1.7 oz. (48 g.) in 1 bar
Calories: 180 calories in 1 bar
Cost: $0.99 for 1 bar
Purchased from: Trader Joe's, Palo Alto, CA

Today was Day #5 of Chocolate Brownie Theme Week.

The Luna line of Nutrition bars (from Clif Bar) was "created by and designed for women."

Today's Caramel Nut Brownie contained soy protein and 24 Vitamins and Minerals, giving this nutrition bar the general flavor (not too sweet) and texture of a protein bar (substantial but less velvety than pure chocolate).

Nice to see some organic ingredients. This bar was "70% Organic," and contained organic chocolate chips, organic unsweetened chocolate, organic cocoa butter and organic chocolate flavor.




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