Chocolate of the Day
Strawberry Basil bar
Good + - Good ++
Weight: 1 oz. (30 g.) / 2 oz. (60 g.) in total bar
Calories: 155 calories (estimate) in 1/2 bar
Cost: $10.00 for 1 bar
Purchased from: Chamisa Chocolate, online order
Welcome to Day #5 of Chocolate and ABCD Theme Week.
Today's Strawberry Basil bar was created by Amanda Hatherly at Chamisa Chocolate (Santa Fe, NM).
Amanda's organic, rich, dark sweet chocolate (65% cacao) bar sparkled with bright, fresh summer flavors: tart-sweet strawberry and authentic fresh basil. (I also caught a barely detectable whiff of very faint roasted coffee in the initial aroma.) The finish was light and lingering with sweet chocolate, red berry and subtle herbal (basil) notes.
This chocolate was the perfect antidote for a blustery, cold day in January.
The scent of basil did create a bit of a brain surprise when I took the first bite of chocolate. My palette/brain was anticipating a savory Mediterranean dish with tomato sauce and cheese, or a savory basil fruit salad...since this herb is rarely used in sweet dishes. A pity really.
Basil is a member of the mint family. And while it's possible to use sweet* basil to make basil chocolate chip ice cream, lemon and basil sorbet, or sweet basil tea--most of us are so used to peppermint (and more occasionally spearmint) being wedded to sweet items that basil blended with sugar and chocolate may take some getting used to. (Peppermint also has a stronger mint (menthol) punch per bunch, making it a potentially less expensive flavoring in large scale production.)
Ingredients: Organic cacao beans, organic sugar, organic cacao butter, organic strawberries, organic basil.
*There are many types of basil, including Thai, Lemon, Greek and Cinnamon--each with their own flavor nuances--but the most common variety found in U.S. grocery stores is "sweet" basil (Ocimum basilicum) or cultivars of this common basil, such as Genovese basil (Ocimum basilicum 'Genovese').