Thursday, January 16, 2014

Fun-Flavoured Chocolate to Melt Away Your Winter Blues

If you live in California, or Florida, or any other warm-weathered place that leaves you confused when you hear the phrase "winter blues", then this article is definitely not for you.  Unless, of course, you just love fun-flavoured chocolate. In that case, read on with the rest of us folks who are experiencing the real-life version of Disney's movie Frozen right now.

In order to get through Canada's snowy, blistery, and cold weather for four months a year, little pick-me-ups are necessary.  Whether that be a trip to the spa, dishing up some warm winter comfort food or spending hours online reading about vacations in Southern France, is a matter of preference.  One great way to 'melt' away your winter blues is by tasting new and fun flavours of chocolate. Here are two that I have tried this week that can definitely be classified as 'fun' and great pick-me-ups on snowy days:

The Bacon with Almond chocolate bar by Araya Artisan Chocolate. This Texas-based chocolate company strives to "deliver an exceptional gastronomic experience in each of its creations" and I have to agree. At first glance, I thought "bacon and almond?" I am all for bacon and chocolate, thanks to Vosges' Mo's Bacon Bar, but I was not so sure about the almond flavour with the bacon flavour.  So I tested the theory by making a little meal of bacon and roasted almonds.  Surprisingly, they tasted great together!

And so did the chocolate bar.  With subtle hints of bacon flavour and a slight crunch from the tiny pieces of almond, this wonderful dark-milk Venezuelan chocolate is both rich-tasting and melt-in-your-mouth good.  If you want to experience this fun flavour, you do not need to go to Texas to get it - you can order online! Or see below for more details on this chocolate.

Vancouver-based chocolate brand, Zazubean, is known for its fun name and flavour combinations.  And what better mood enhancer than a chocolate bar called 'Cheeky, Be the Sassy Banana', with salted toffee and banana as the featured flavours in a 70% dark chocolate with Maca (a medicinal herb known as a natural aphrodisiac could certainly be considered a winter pick-me-up). This chocolate is dark, but with a slightly sweet crunch and just a hint of banana flavour. 

As a bonus, there is no artificial flavour in this chocolate bar, and the chocolate is both Fair Trade and Organic. Learn more details online: Zazubean can also now be found at Loblaw's Superstores!

Here are the package details of the chocolate bars listed here today:

Bacon with: Almond, 41% Milk Chocolate
araya artisanchocolate, Katy, TX, U.S.A.
Ingredients: Dark milk Venezuelan chocolate, bacon flavoured chips, almonds, shimmer powder. Allergens: soy Lecithin, milk proteins and peanuts. May contain traces of peanuts and tree nuts.

'cheeky' Be the Sassy Banana, Salted Toffee & Banana, 100 g
Organic Dark Chocolate, Dominican Republic & Ecuador
Zazubean (Vancouver, B.C., Canada)
Ingredients:  Cocoa mass*+, cane sugar*+, toffee*+(cane sugar*+, whole milk powder*), cocoa butter*+, bananas*, sea salt, Maca*, vanilla*+
+Fair Trade certified
Contains milk.  May contain traces of nuts and peanuts.

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