Unsolicited Chocolate Reviews

I have SO been slacking on the cooking lately…for no reason really, I guess.  I was obsessed with perfecting the pumpkin cupcakes until very recently and I just didn’t try much else.  I do have something planned for tomorrow evening, though, which will feature both one of my favorite fall/winter fruits and a bar of 100% cacao.  After that, I’m going to (finally!) try out my brand new shiny red Kitchenaid mixer (that I reeeally wanted for my VERY OWN KITCHEN I was going to have, and then I didn’t have the kitchen…and I still don’t have the kitchen, and the Kitchenaid has sat unopened and lonely since I got it…sad, I know) to make what will hopefully be a bunch of delicious “small smackerels.”  I may also cook some non-dessert foods – who knows!  Probably not much, though – I bought a really basic cake decorating kit today (just an icing bag and a few tips) so I’m excited to make fancier goodies!

Because I don’t have much else to share today, I’m going to write about some chocolate!  Hooray!  I’m not much of a chocolate fan, really…I mean, I like it, but I’m rarely all “OMG CHOCOLATE” or anything, and if given a choice of candy, will generally choose something chewy and fruity (Jelly Bellies?  Yes please!) over something smooth and chocolatey.  However, I am pretty particular about the chocolate that I do eat.  I’m a big fan of very dark chocolate, and I’ve tried a few different kinds.  Usually the chocolate I have on hand will vary from week to week based on what I find on sale in whatever store(s) I’ve visited lately.  As far as I know, these are the highest cacao content bars for their brands.

Hershey’s Cacao Reserve 65%

Tastes…like Hershey’s.  I like their dark chips for baking but not so much for slow savoring; even as a bar it’s too sweet and too gooey.  Fine if you chop it up and put it in cookies, but then, why not just buy the chips?

Green & Black Organic 70%

Definitely my favorite, but (of course) the most expensive.  I think from now on I’m going to just spring for it, because it lasts the longest.  How is that possible?  Well, most bars like this tend to have very large squares, but Green & Black’s are teensy tiny, and melt so slowly and evenly that even a little shred of a nibble will last for a while in your mouth, completely coating your tongue.  Not too dark and not too sweet, and very worthy of being used as “chocolate therapy.”

Lindt Excellence Extra Dark 85%

I’m not terribly familiar with Lindt aside from their truffles, which are ok (I, of course, prefer the super dark ones in the black wrappers).  This was…um…chalky.  I don’t even know if I’ll finish it.  Maybe it was old?  The flavor was ok, but the texture was pretty gross.  I definitely won’t buy it again.

Ghirardelli Intense Dark Midnight Reverie 86%

I buy this one the most often, since it’s at least a dollar cheaper than the Green & Black.  I almost didn’t like it at first, but it grew on me by about the third bite.  It’s fun to eat because it’s so un-chocolatey in taste.  It tastes more like smoky berries and cherries and melts nicely.  I like Ghirardelli in general – their products are always tasty and relatively high-quality for the price.  I just wish it broke into smaller squares, as it’s hard to gauge how much you’ve eaten with giant squares!

I wish I had pictures of all four, or a ratings system, but this was kind of a spur-of-the-moment idea I had, wanting to get in a post today before I try another idea I had for a post tomorrow (which could potentially become a regular end-of-the-month feature, if I like it enough).

I’m still not sure if I’m doing anything Halloweenish tomorrow.  I rarely end up doing anything, which is sad since I really love this holiday!  I haven’t worn a costume in years, aside from the ones I wore daily in October when I worked for Spencer’s (and I definitely miss that part of the job).  My day, as far as I know, is going to involve getting up early, watching Martha’s sure-to-be-awesome Halloween special, and then heading into town on a cupcake-related errand.

Since I have no new pictures to share, here’s one of Bowser.

Mmm, breakfast!

Mmm, breakfast!

He likes to start most days with a big pile of fresh lettuce and a sprinkling of healthy tortoise vitamins, to keep his little shell nie and strong!…I prefer an apple and a cup of tea first thing in the morning.

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