CHOCOLATE WITH ALL THE GOODNESS BUT NOT THE CALORIES…

I am a chocoholic and proud to be one. From an early age when away at school all my chocolate in my tuck box would be eaten first then I would do a never-ending amount of jobs for senior girls in order to get some more. I really should have opened a chocolate shop before now. I’ve even been on a chocolate diet ! and ‘no’it did not work but it was rather enjoyable.

However, we all know it’s not good for our waist line nor our teeth but over the years it does get some good press as being good for your heart in the right format and the amount you eat. Chocolate is made from cocoa, which contains polyphenols, which may work as antioxidants that lower LDL cholesterol (the bad kind) and reduce blood pressure. Some experts suggest that eating some chocolate every day can decrease your risk of cardiovascular diseases.

Cocoa contains epicatechins and catechins, which are similar to the polyphenols found in green tea; and quercetin, which is found in fruits and vegetables. Dark chocolate has more antioxidants than milk chocolate because certain processing methods remove the polyphenols, which have a bitter flavor.

Dr. Arebi on Net Doctor wrote “Fermentation in the bean and subsequent extraction generates cocoa butter and releases a variety of vitamins and minerals such as potassium and anti-oxidants,” she explains.

“Cocoa beans also contain dopamine, phenylethylamine and serotonin, chemicals with powerful antidepressant properties that also promote wellbeing. In addition, theobromine is another component of the cocoa bean and has caffeine like properties.”

And she says that many more healthy chemicals are released when chocolate is fermented in our intestines by our gut bacteria, citing research that showed the antioxidants released are similar to those found in green tea.

So, where can we buy chocolate that is that bit healthier but tastes as good as ordinary chocolate? Well there are many companies out there with healthier chocolate treats for us in fact far to many for me to write about in one post so instead I am going to write a regular post on it with all the information I have found about each company.

To start off this regular slot my first post is all about a company called The Skinny Food Company, The Skinny Food Co. was founded in May 2018. James Whiting and Wayne Starky (Directors) have previous experience in the food and beverage/health and wellness market and have discovered the need for great, tasty, and healthy products. It is promoted by diabetic family members who avoid so many favorite foods. This brand was born with the release of zero-calorie syrups, healthy, almost zero table sauces, and shortly thereafter.

Some of the products which I cannot wait to try are-

The Chocolate Flavoured Zero Calories Syrup at £3.99

The Prodigy Chunky Chocolate Low Sugar Vegan Chocolate Bars at £1.99

The Skinny High Protein Milk Chocolate Crispies at £1.25

The Double Chocolate 3 calories a cup drink at £2.49

The 92% less sugar Chocolate Spread at £3.99

I don’t need to go any further as I am sure your mouth will be watering by now but I promise I will follow up after I have tried some of these and another post on chocolate for fewer calories.

#NATIONAL CAKE WEEK – 2nd – 8th OCTOBER…

It’s National Cake Week this week in the UK so get out your scales and pop on that Pinney to make your special cake this week.

A movable feast that is always celebrated in the first full week of October. National Cake Week was founded by Lynn Hill in 2011, with the sole purpose of celebrating and sharing a whole cake together with family and friends. You will find a cake at the heart of almost every formal and informal gathering, whether in the office, a family birthday party, or a wedding and who doesn’t love a slice or two?

Cakes come in all shape sharing sizes, round, square and rectangular. Semi-naked, the cake of course, not the baker, with a feather-light sponge, filled and topped with fresh fruit, or a chocoholic overload that is sure to send you into a sugar rush high.

Whatever the occasion, National Cake Week is the time to celebrate the humble cake in all its glory. Share your creation on social media using the hashtag #nationalcakeweek

Also, share in here for us all to admire.

 

CHOCOLATE WEEK 9th-15th OCTOBER 2017…

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Chocolate Week 9-15th October 2017

If you love chocolate (like I do) then you have to go over to the Chocolate Week website to check out what events and tastings are going on during this week.

The Chocolate Show – London Logo

The Chocolate Show takes place at the Olympia National Hall on the 13th-15th October where some of the delightful and delectable things happening at The Chocolate Show include:
– A selection of the finest chocolatiers and pastry makers from the UK and around the world
– Celebrity chef demonstrations
– Workshops for adults and budding chefs
– Tastings
– Sculptures
– A pop-up chocolate restaurant
– a Chocolate Bar with chocolate and drink pairings
and much more!

There is also a Participants Page which lists all the chocolate makers who are staging events during Chocolate week ( all based in London).

There is also a page just on chocolate where you will learn things you never knew about chocolate.

TEA & CAKE AT TIMMERMANS GARDEN CENTRE IN WOODBOROUGH, NOTTINGHAMSHIRE…

After being indoors for over 5 days with a throat, chest and ear infection I decided a breath of fresh air was the next best medicine. Hubby decided a trip over to our local garden centre ‘Timmermans’, would be a better option then we could have a cup of tea and a cake.

Timmermans has been updated a great deal over the last twelve months and have won awards from the Garden Industry. They have a delightful eating area which is called ‘Belle & Joe’s Kitchen’. Belle & Joe’s Kitchen was voted as the ‘BEST GARDEN CENTRE CAFE IN NOTTINGHAMSHIRE’ by the Nottingham Post (May 2013).

They say that ‘Our homemade cakes are gaining a following all of their own and we make an effort to provide a varied range of freshly baked cakes with unusual flavours our speciality; elderflower, courgette, frosted blueberry. We communicate what has just come out of the oven on the ‘Just Made’ chalkboard at the entrance to the restaurant We use quality ingredients from local food producers and suppliers – our eggs come from Peter in the village, our milk and dairy come from the local dairy, our aim is always to use fresh, seasonal produce which is locally grown wherever possible.’

I had a slice of my favourite which is ‘carrot cake’which was delicious and worth every penny. The tea for two came in a pot which gave us both two cups and it was all extremely good value for money. I don’t think it will be long before I am back sampling their mouth watering afternoon tea.

We love Timmermans for their plants and never manage to go for a visit without bringing something back with us but all their plants are extremely good so it’s hard to not buy something.

 

CHOCOLATE…

Chocolate is …

Luscious

Decadent

Divine

Seductive

Heavenly

and tastes good with…

Almonds

Walnuts

Hazelnuts

Pecans

Peanuts

Ice-cream

Strawberries

It’s also …

Velvety

Dark

Rewarding

Delicate

Exciting

And it makes the world go round ! and so say all of us CHOCAHOLICS…