It only makes sense that my kids like matzah and melted cheese because they’re copying me. Or sliced apples...or rice cakes...or iced coffee. It’s the same thing when it comes to my less healthy habits: dessert. As much as I anticipate the final course, that was only if the dessert was something vanilla and creamy. So that means that I have to fight with my kids over the white halves of the black-and-white cookies. They request that I buy vanilla sandwich cookies over the ubiquitous chocolate, and if the ice cream shop layers a birthday cake with vanilla on the bottom and chocolate on top...well, that cake is going to cave in. Because of all this, I get along much better with chocolate-loving guests who are happy to enjoy the halves of things myself and my kids just don’t want.
Photo by Dan Engongoro
But this was all before I learned that there’s a difference in chocolate quality...and it makes a huge difference in the taste. In the past, whenever I’d purchase the ingredients for a chocolate dessert, I’d look for the cheapest baking bar I could find. No more...now the best possible quality chocolate is my little secret to heavenly chocolate desserts (that even I love). When I started tasting chocolate desserts with the right kinda chocolate, I was converted.
Why was I so fooled before? In the United States, chocolate doesn’t need to contain all that much chocolate to earn the name. Your “chocolate baking bar” is likely mostly fat and sugar. To ensure quality when baking with chocolate, look for a % on the package. The % represents how much of that bar actually comes from the cocoa bean. 70% or 72% a bittersweet bar or about 62% for a semi-sweet bar which contains more sugar. Not all are created equal.
The folks at Scharffen Berger
(my personal favorite brand) want to get you started by giving away an Essential Scharffen Berger Baking set, which includes all the products you see above (Retail value $50). Simply leave a comment, sharing your favorite chocolate dessert, and one of you will be the winner!
Giveaway ends midnight, September 27, 2012
Prize sponsored by Scharffen Berger, opions are my own.