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Old 09-16-2006, 04:31 PM   #1
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What kind of chocolate do you eat. I think Dark chocolate is part of the
Med. diet; but what kind? I really dont think Hersey's is a good kind.
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Old 09-16-2006, 06:28 PM   #2
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If I'm eating chocolate for "health reasons" I try to get the darkest chocolate available (highest level of cacoa). Since even chocolate for health reasons is a treat for me, I'm sure not going to blow it on Hersheys. Some of my favorites are Green & Black's and Dagoba.

Chocolate health tips (quoted from a website):

Studies in two prestigious scientific journals say dark chocolate -- but not white chocolate or milk chocolate -- is good for you.

What is it about dark chocolate?

The answer is plant phenols -- cocoa phenols, to be exact. These compounds are known to lower blood pressure.

Chocolates made in Europe are generally richer in cocoa phenols than those made in the U.S. So if you're going to try this at home, remember: Darker is better.

http://www.yachanagourmet.com/health_benefits.htm (more stuff, a little biased for this particular brand)
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Old 09-16-2006, 06:53 PM   #3
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Dove Dark chocolate is divine.
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Old 09-17-2006, 06:05 AM   #4
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I'm a Green and Blacks girl. Somtimes for a treat I'll get the Green and Blacks dark milk chocolate, but the 70% cocoa solids is definitely better. I love the one with whole dried sour cherries in it, and dh hates that one! The Green and Blacks Maya gold is divine. I was a bit disappointed when green and Black's was sold to Cadbury's, but I think it's important we keep supporting them, as there are precious few companys making good chocolate, as well as ensuring as much as they can produce is organic, and also fairly traded. I think part of the whole foods lifestyle is supporting farmers to live good sustainable lives, and protecting those who produce our food from exploitation.

I also like Valhrona. Some of the high end chocolate manufacturers make chocolate in individually wrapped squares (I notice on the Green and Black's link Glory sent that Green and Black's do this), which I find really useful diet wise, it's a whole lot harder to overeat those as unwrapping each one reminds you of how much you are eating!
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Old 09-17-2006, 08:58 AM   #5
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I buy my dark chocolate from Trader Joe's. They have quite a variety and they are all really good. I make sure it is 70% and higher.

I've given up dark chocolate for the moment though. I have a wedding to prepare for and it is easy for me to eat dark chocolate every night if I let myself. Even though I only limit myself to 1 or 2 squares, it is still a bit too much to do every day.
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Old 09-17-2006, 10:20 AM   #6
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I live in NY; Does anyone know of a "real" chocolat store in nyc?
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Old 09-17-2006, 11:30 AM   #7
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I'm sure there are tons. Any kind of high-end, specialty grocery store would have the brands mentioned above. According to websites, both Trader Joe's and Whole Foods have stores in Union Square.

You can also order off the internet.
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Old 09-17-2006, 11:37 AM   #8
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Has anyone made there own chocolates?
I have looked at websites and it is all so expensive...I am wondering if I can make my own?
Any ideas?
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Old 09-17-2006, 01:57 PM   #9
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Well you can buy dark chocolate and eat it as is or melt it down for your own purposes.

Trader Joe's chocolate is pretty cheap plus you don't eat a lot of it. I've bought their pound plus bar before (18 oz of chocolate) and it lasted many weeks.
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Old 09-17-2006, 02:05 PM   #10
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i live in a smaller town...I need to find a place with these brands of dark chocolate...are they easy to find?
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Old 09-17-2006, 02:15 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Snowbunny View Post
Has anyone made there own chocolates?
I have looked at websites and it is all so expensive...I am wondering if I can make my own?
Any ideas?
It's not that expensive when you consider a serving size is 2 oz, that's really small. One of those big 3.00 Green & Black's bars would last a long time.

I don't think you can make chocolate at home easily.

Process (From How Stuff Works)

Cacao beans are fermented for about a week, dried in the sun and then shipped to the chocolate maker. The chocolate maker starts by roasting the beans to bring out the flavor. Different beans from different places have different qualities and flavors, so they are often sorted and blended to produce a distinctive mix. Next, the roasted beans are winnowed. Winnowing removes the meat (also known as the nib) of the cocoa bean from its shell.

Once roasted, winnowed, and blended, the nibs are ground, and the ground nibs form a viscous liquid called chocolate liquor (the word liquor has nothing to do with alcohol -- that's just what it's called). All seeds contain some amount of fat, and cocoa beans are no different. However, cocoa beans are half fat, which is why the ground nibs form a liquid. If you have ever ground up peanuts to make real peanut butter, that is similar -- real peanut butter is a thick liquid. The difference between peanut oil and cocoa oil is that peanut oil is liquid at room temperature while cocoa oil is a solid up to about 90 degrees Fahrenheit (32 degrees Celsius).

You can do two different things with chocolate liquor. You can pour it into a mold and let it cool and solidify. This is unsweetened chocolate. Or you can press it in a hydraulic press to squeeze out the fat. When you do that, what you are left with is a dry cake of the ground cocoa bean solids and cocoa butter (useful in everything from tanning products to white chocolate). If you grind up the cake, you have cocoa powder. You can buy both unsweetened chocolate (baking chocolate) and pure cocoa powder at the grocery store. What you are buying is ground cocoa beans, either with or without the cocoa butter.

There are three basic things that must be done by the chocolate maker to make a chocolate bar:

Adding ingredients - The chocolate that we eat contains sugar, other flavors (like vanilla) and often milk (in milk chocolate). The chocolate maker adds these ingredients according to his or her secret recipe.

Conching - A special machine is used to massage the chocolate in order to blend the ingredients together and smooth it out. Conching can take anywhere from two to six days.

Tempering - Tempering is a carefully controlled heating process. According to this Chocolate FAQ, tempering is "a process where the chocolate is slowly heated, then slowly cooled, allowing the cocoa butter molecules to solidify in an orderly fashion." Without tempering, the chocolate does not harden properly or the cocoa butter separates out (as cream separates from milk).
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Old 09-17-2006, 03:47 PM   #12
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I live in a dinky midwestern town, nary a Trader Joe's or Whole Foods to be found but Walmart of all places carries Ghiradelli Dark chocolate. I like Twilight Delight (dumb name) which is 72% cacao. I keep 100 calories back and eat two squares every night. I need to know I'm having that.
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Old 09-18-2006, 01:41 AM   #13
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You can't make chocolate at home from cocoa. We did it as kids using copha (which you can only buy in Australia its like a cold pressed solid coconut butter). Copha is full of funny fats (trans fatty acids) so it's defeating the purpose.

Good chocolate is expensive, but you are only eating a tiny bit each day or every other day. And perhaps the price is a reminder that it's good stuff, not cheap compounded stuff to be eaten at whim.
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Old 09-18-2006, 01:24 PM   #14
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I've found one store - Fred Meyer (an Oregon chain, but owned by Kroger) that carries Green & Blacks. I resisted buying it for a long time, as it's nearly $5/bar!!! (Now granted that's in Alaska, might be cheaper elsewhere) But I got the espresso flavor - and it's wonderful! Yet, I'm happy with 2 oz, and this bar has lasted me over 2 weeks - at work. I gave DH a couple squares when he came by one day, and I know if I took it home, he'd have it finished in a day or two.
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Old 09-20-2006, 01:34 AM   #15
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My dh loves the maya gold Green and Blacks, but he hasn't found the stash He keeps out of the kitchen - wise man!

And how come I have never seen the espresso and I live in the country that produces Green and Blacks, that just isn't fair!
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