Monday, July 1, 2019

Mirzam Chocolate Makers - 45% Milk Chocolate Loqaimat bar - July 1, 2019

Chocolate of the Day: 

Mirzam Chocolate Makers
(Kakaw Manufacturing Co. LLC)
45% Milk Chocolate Loqaimat bar
Good +
Weight: 1 oz. (28.3 g.) / 2.47 oz. (70 g.) in total bar
Calories: 142 calories in 1 oz. (28.3 g.) of bar (per label)
Cost: $14.00 for 1 bar
Purchased from: Chocolate Covered, San Francisco, CA

Welcome to Day #7 of Chocolate and Peruvian Superfoods Theme Week, and Day #1 of Chocolate and Island Nations Theme Week. Chocolate, with its far-flung supply chain, and delicious flavor, ties many geographic areas and peoples together.

Today's 45% Milk Chocolate Loqaimat* bar was created by Mirzam Chocolate Makers (Dubai, UAE).

Dubai is the largest city in the United Arab Emirates. And while it is not technically part of an island, it has nonetheless taken island design and building to a whole new level. Some of the created islands are shaped like palm trees. And what prized fruit grows locally on palm trees there? Dates.

Mirzam Chocolate Makers was highlights great chocolate blended with ingredients linked to extensive, historic Arab maritime trade routes, such as dates.**

Today's confection of a bar was made of high-quality, sweet milk chocolate (45% cacao). The chocolate had toffee and caramel flavor and a crunchy, slightly sticky texture, all achieved from two inclusions: 1.) puffed quinoa (there's our Peruvian reference) caramelized with 2.) date syrup (Arab trade item). The results of this blend: pretty, copper-colored flecks seen on the inside wrapper and a sweet treat.

Quinoa, a high-protein pseudo-cereal prized for its nutritious seeds, originated in the harsh upper elevations of Peru, and is now being cultivated around the Mediterranean and in parts of Africa. (It is also similar to millet or Fonio, an up-and-coming West African "superfood" that also grows "where nothing else will grow.") There has been a resurgence of interest in these humble, gluten-free seeds and grains in recent years.

*Loqaimat or luqaimat or lukma is a sweet, fried dough dessert that resembles American doughnut holes.

**The line up of Mirzam chocolate bars features a few bars containing dates. My favorite so far has been their bar with dates and fennel. Dates, have an incredible natural sweetness and have been cultivated in the Middle East for thousands of years. (The largest producers of dates today are: Egypt, Iran, Saudi Arabia and Iraq.)

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