Friday, June 10, 2011

ChocolateBet: June 10, 2011

Chocolate(s) of the Day:

1.) Achdut Ltd./Achva
Marble Sesame Halva
Weight: .6 oz. (17 g.) / 16 oz. (1 lb.) (454 g.) total container
Calories: 83.4 calories
Cost: $3.49 total container
Purchased from: Crossroads Market, in Palo Alto, CA

2.) The Hain Celestial Group, Inc.
Chocolate Sesame Bar
Good +
Weight: .95 oz. (27 g.) total bar
Calories: 130 calories for 1 bar
Cost: $2.29 for 1 bar
Purchased from: Lucky (supermarket) Marina Village, Alameda, CA

Today was Day #9 of Chocolate and Mediterranean Theme Week. And I enjoyed two products that mixed chocolate and sesame seeds.

The first, was an Israeli Halva from Achdut, Ltd.: Achva Marble Sesame Halva -- a swirled blend of plain/vanilla and chocolate halva, shaped into a dense loaf and packaged in a 1 pound plastic tub. I cut a small slice to try. This grainy, sweet, nut-seed flavored paste looks like it might have come from a dessert or warm, dry climate.

In fact, the tiny sesame seed comes from a flowering plant that moved into Egypt, Turkey, and other Mediterranean countries many centuries ago, from "the Indian sub-continent or Spice Islands," according to what I read online. (Sesame seeds are grown in the U.S., primarily in Arizona and Texas.) The seeds were apparently used initially for oil or wine, and later for food and flavoring. The simple combination of sesame seeds and honey evolved into to modern day halva(s).

Today's second chocolate and sesame item was gluten free bar from The Hain Celestial Group, fortified "with vitamins, minerals and prebiotics to support digestion." The bar also contained chocolate chips and cocoa powder; brown rice syrup; flax seeds; and roasted peanuts -- resulting in a rich, glossy and chewy rendition of a seed bar laced with chocolate.

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