Oh happy day! Chocolate Myths debunked.

While those in love treat Chocolate as an aphrodisiac, those on a diet run in the opposite direction of a Chocolate bar. Whatever your take is on this ‘food from the Gods’, you can’t possibly be human if you don’t enjoy Chocolate in some form from time to time.

Here are few myths about Chocolate that we are happy to see debunked.

 

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Myth: Chocolate is high in caffeine. 
Fact: While eating Chocolate may perk you up, Chocolate is actually not very high in caffeine. A 40 grams Chocolate bar contains 6 mg of caffeine, the same amount as a cup of decaffeinated coffee.
 

Myth: Chocolate is loaded with saturated fat and is bad for your cholesterol. 
Fact: Stearic acid, the main saturated fat found in milk Chocolate, is unique. Research has shown that it doesn’t raise cholesterol levels the same way that other types of saturated fats do. In fact, eating a 40 grams Chocolate bar instead of a carbohydrate-rich snack has been shown to increase HDL (good) cholesterol levels.
 

Myth: Chocolate lacks any nutritional value. 
Fact: Chocolate is a good source of magnesium, copper, iron and zinc. It also contains polyphenols (an antioxidant also found in tea and red wine) that have been associated with a decreased risk of coronary disease. An average Chocolate bar contains about the same amount of antioxidants as a glass of red wine.

A daily serving of dark Chocolate, which contains more antioxidants than milk Chocolate, can also help lower blood pressure and improve insulin resistance.

 

Myth: Chocolate causes cavities. 
Fact: Candy alone is not responsible for cavities. Cavities are formed when bacteria in the mouth metabolize sugars and starches from any type of food (soda, candy, juice, bread, rice and pasta) to produce acid. This acid then eats through the enamel of the tooth, causing a cavity.

The protein, calcium and phosphate content of milk Chocolate may actually protect tooth enamel, and its naturally-occurring fat content means that Chocolate clears the mouth faster than other candy, reducing the amount of time its sugars remain in contact with tooth surfaces.

Proper oral hygiene to remove carbohydrate residue can prevent the formation of cavities—whether you avoid Chocolate or not.
 

Myth: Chocolate causes acne. 
Fact: Regardless of what your parents say, studies in the past 20 years have eliminated Chocolate as a cause of acne. In fact, many dermatologists doubt that diet plays any significant role in the development of acne. Acne is now believed to be caused by a combination of high bacteria levels and oil on the skin.
 

Myth: Chocolate causes weight gain. 
Fact: Any food can be part of a healthy diet if consumed in moderation. An average Chocolate bar contains 220 calories, which is low enough to be a part of a weight control diet if other high-calorie foods are eliminated. Enjoying the occasional piece of Chocolate may reduce the risk of a binge, when you feel deprived of your favourite foods.
Chocolate’s bad reputation is slowly changing and research now shows that Chocolate can be a part of an overall healthy lifestyle, when consumed in moderation.

 

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Get your monthly supply at our store. So many brands, so many offers, so much choice. We won’t judge. Go right ahead! We know you want to.

Thank you pixabay.com for the images.

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Pairing Whisky with Food: 101

The cardinal rule for pairing Whisky with food is that you can’t mix and match as you please. Much like the broad spectrum of Wines that are paired with a wide variety of meats or cuisines, even Whisky can be paired with food based on how the flavours of the aforementioned complement each other.

This guide will take you beyond the Indian boundaries and flavours and into the old-school way of Whiskys paired around the world. This would give you a better idea of the range of flavours, thus making you a true connoisseur of Whisky. Right from the rich vanilla flavour found in American Bourbon Whiskey to the subtle smooth Irish Whisky to the not-so-subtle smokiness found in the finest Scotch, we give you a whiff of it all. This variation in flavours poses a challenge to pair food with Whiskey, especially due to the unlimited options. We have put together a list of some common foods that go with Whiskey and also recommend the kind of whiskies that go with it.

  • Meat

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Image Source: http://bit.ly/1NzYlcI

One of the oldest tricks in the book is to drink an American Whiskey with barbecued foods or pulled meats such as beef or pork. This blends in with the intense aroma of such meats and the well-marinated flavours of barbecued meat. Jack Daniel’s Whiskey http://goo.gl/5uZrQJ and Jim Beam’s Bourbon http://goo.gl/V7gDDp make a good pairing with barbecued meat.

Lighter meats go best with Irish Whiskys such as Jameson Irish Whiskey http://goo.gl/EXbPts due to the similar vibrance they share. Irish Whiskey, typically offers a spicy freshness which makes up for the lack of strong flavouring of white meats that are grilled.

Richer Scotch blends like Johnnie Walker http://goo.gl/wdeYn0 are ideal for pairing with main dishes which are heavy on flavours like curries or steaks.

  1. Seafood

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Image source: http://bit.ly/1FMCz2Y

The delicate and sweetish tinge that is found in seafood, make it a great pairing with Single Casks that carry similar traces of sweetness. Glenlivet Single Cask http://goo.gl/5qON9N  is a great combination with scallops or even crabs.

A very interesting supplement with Sushi is a Japanese Single Malt Whiskey called Yamazaki. This Whiskey carries an intense sweet aroma and washes down the soft and creamy texture of Sushi.

Lighter Whiskys are recommended with seafood as they complement the sweet undertone and enhance the flavors of each other.

  1. Cheese

cheese assortment on a cutting board

Image source: http://bit.ly/1OXzwuu

A  great accompaniment for cheese is Irish Whisky, the spicy flavour of the Whisky goes well with the pungency of cheese and balances out the sharp taste.

Even Single-Malt varieties like Johnnie Walker Black Label http://goo.gl/koVLWe  has a smoky yet intense aroma to it and is perfect with well-aged cheddar cheese.

  1.    Chocolate and dessert

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Image Source: http://bit.ly/1Msm9lJ

The Peated Malt has an amazing smoky flavour which is an acquired taste and let us warn you, it’s not meant for everyone. However, the upside of drinking this Whiskey is that it makes for a perfect match with dark chocolates.

Even lighter Scotch blends like J&B http://goo.gl/ZHnyX2 can be drank with a fruity dessert as they carry complex flavours with a pleasant and smooth aftertaste.

Bourbon Whiskeys provide just the right amount of sweet hints to go with a pecan pie or cheesecakes.

Desserts with meringues or a citrusy tinge go perfectly with Grained Whiskeys that augment the sweetness of the flavours.

It is quite an art to pair food with Whisky and if done right, you could establish that you know your Whiskies as well as you know your food. So stick to these very simple basics of Whisky pairing with food and also have a look at our collection of Whiskies and Single-malts before you get cracking on this guide: http://goo.gl/fCgQV4 http://goo.gl/bo0a4m

Great liquor-based desserts

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Image source: http://www.bettycrocker.com/how-to/tipslibrary/baking-tips/baking-with-booze

Nothing quite adds the punch to a fine meal like a delicious dessert that shocks the taste buds and gives you a heady sensation. Yes, we’re referring to yummy after-meal goodies that contain a ‘healthy’ dose of liquor! Liquor can be effectively used as an ingredient in a variety of desserts, including cakes, biscotti, brownies, fudges, ice creams, mousses, crème brûlées, pies and more. Ready for an amazing mouth-watering experience? Try these simple but addictive desserts today and have your friends and loved ones begging for more in no time!

Rum cake

rum cake

Image source: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/rum-cake-semi-homemaker-recipe-recipe.html

Traditionally, this delicacy is made by soaking dry fruit in Rum for months and then mixing them in dough containing caramelized sugar. But worry not, here’s a fool-proof recipe for making Rum cake on the go.

Ingredients

For the cake:

1 cup chopped walnuts
1 pack of yellow cake mix
½ cup dark Rum
4 eggs
½ cup water
½ cup vegetable oil
1 pack of instant vanilla pudding mix

For the glaze:

½ cup butter
1/8th cup water
½ cup white sugar
¼ cup Rum

Method

  1. Pre-heat your oven to 165 degrees Celsius, then grease and flour a cake pan. Sprinkle the walnuts over the bottom of the pan.
  2. Mix the cake mix, Rum, eggs, water, oil and vanilla pudding mix. Pour the batter into the pan.
  3. Bake for an hour. Cool and invert the cake on a serving plate. Prick the top of the cake to check its consistency.
  4. For the glaze, melt the butter in a saucepan. Add the water and sugar and stir constantly for 5 minutes as the mixture continues to boil. Now take off the pan from the stove, add the Rum and stir. Pour this mixture evenly over the top of the cake and spread and smoothen it across the top and sides.

And voilà, you have lip-smacking Rum cake, ready to serve hot!

Get superb dark Rums that can truly make this dessert fantastic, at Bengaluru Duty Free. Pre-order the Bacardi Black for just $21 at http://bit.ly/1yuOosd and the Captain Morgan Black Label for just $17 at http://bit.ly/1wh6fx9.

Irish Cream ice cream

irish cream ice cream

Image source: http://cookingontheside.com/baileys-irish-cream-ice-cream/

Who doesn’t love ice cream? There are few things in this world as pleasant and soothing as a cup of fresh and delicious vanilla ice cream. But wait, it can get better. All you need to heighten the already sublime experience of eating ice cream is to add some rich Bailey’s Irish Cream and you’re set for a truly magical experience. Try it out to see what we mean.

Ingredients

2 cups heavy cream
1 cup whole milk
3/4th cup granulated sugar
2 shots Bailey’s Irish Cream

Method

  1. Freeze the ingredients in their suggested quantities for 20 – 25 minutes.
  2. Once everything is chilled adequately, mix it all together in a medium bowl and whisk/beat until the sugar is dissolved.
  3. Now keep this mixture back in the freezer and chill well for an hour.

Ready to serve? Prepare for an ice cream experience like no other.

Drunken brownies

drunken brownies

Image source: http://betterbatter.org/drunken-brownies

Brownies are one of the most popular dessert choices, perfect for an afternoon bite with your tea or coffee or even post dinner to mellow out a rich spice-filled meal. So what better way to unwind than with a rich brownie that overflows not only with the essence of chocolate but also that of Vodka? Yes, you heard right: the potent combination of chocolate and Vodka makes for a tantalizing dessert dish that completely revitalizes your palate. Wish to experience this sinful delight? Follow this simple recipe!

Ingredients

½ cup dark chocolate
½ cup butter (extra for greasing the pan)
¾ cup sugar
¼ cup Vodka
2 large eggs
1 cup flour

Method

  1. Melt butter and chocolate. Whisk until the mixture is smooth.
  2. Add sugar and whisk again.
  3. Add Vodka and allow the mixture to cool.
  4. Add the eggs to the cooled mixture and whisk.
  5. Add the flour in two batches and mix again each time to ensure the batter is uniformly smooth.
  6. Transfer this batter to a greased pan and bake at 180 degree Celsius for about 25 minutes. Prick the top of the baked brownie to ensure that it comes out almost, but not completely, clean. Unlike a cake, the centre should be a bit moist and gooey.
  7. Cool for about 15 minutes, then cut into rectangles and serve.

You’re now ready for the ultimate tea party!

Try these great desserts today and wow yourself and your friends and loved ones. Bon appetit!