Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Tempting Top Tens - Chocolate

Of the 26 letters, C was by far the easiest temptation to pick - chocolate - and one of the easiest top ten lists to put together for the A-Z blogging challenge.

10.  Chocolate chip cookies - even better with chocolate chunks.  Baking the dough is optional, of course.

9.  Ben & Jerry's Caramel Sutra - a decadent blend of chocolate and caramel ice-creams. I've heard rumors this flavor has been discontinued - oh horrors! Fortunately Ben & Jerry's has many other chocolate ice cream variations that suffice - like New York Super Fudge Chunk.

8. Death By Chocolate - basically any type of layered chocolate dessert. The idea is to layer as much chocolate as possible, in as many forms: chocolate cake layered with chocolate mousse, chocolate chips, fudge syrup, crumbled oreos - the options are endless.

7. Chocolate covered fruit. Strawberries, cherries, blueberries are common. But exotic fruit like kiwi or huckleberries dipped in fudge syrup can blow your mind, too.

6.    Fudge brownies - much easier to make than actual fudge, and the same chocolate-rush when you eat them.

5.    Hot fudge sundae - the exactly perfect ratio of hot fudge to cold ice-cream is a common debate, but as long as the ratio is within 30/70 to 50/50, I'm happy.

 4.    Lava chocolate cake. Whoever invented this deserves a medal. Chocolate cake with hot fudge spilling out of the middle of it.

3.    French silk pie- there are French silk pie imitations (yeah Village Inn, you are guilty!) and then there is REAL French silk pie. You can tell the real thing by the slightly shiny appearance of the chocolate and the truly silky texture. It is a dangerously sensuous eating experience.

2.    Chocolate torte. There is a long history of European tortes, rich multi-layered cakes, usually made with little flour (very dense), with buttercream or mousse between the layers. The ultimate chocolate torte, in my opinion,  is filled with ganache, a smooth mixture of chopped chocolate and heavy cream - developed by the French, of course.

1.    Chocolate truffles. They deserve first place by being literally the biggest chocolate punch in the smallest package. A single high quality chocolate truffle can provide more chocolate craving satisfaction than a whole shelf of cheap chocolate bars like Snickers, Milky Ways, or Hersheys (though don't get me wrong, I won't turn those down, either). But the other reason why the truffle deserves first place is the sheer creative variety of these little gems.
A store called The Chocolate Fetish in Asheville, NC, just about made me leave my beloved Wyoming Rocky Mountains behind for good - for their amazing truffles. I tried a truffle called "the Dragon's Sigh" - listen to this heavenly description: "sprinkled with white and black sesame seeds, enrobed in a creamy smooth dark chocolate overture, the full flavored dark chocolate center will tackle your tongue with a light taste of Wasabi." I also tried the "Midsummer Night's Dream" truffle - chocolate infused with fresh lavender, locally produced honey, and hint of lemon, and admired more creative truffle names such as "High Tea" "French Velvet" "Wine and Roses" and "Ancient Pleasures."

But just as I was about to move to North Carolina, I remembered the renowned Cowboy Chocolatier who lives in Wyoming and produces champagne truffles, Jack Daniels truffles, and many other unique truffles, as well. I guess I can stay here and be content.

My very best chocolate experience was the midnight chocolate buffet on the Norway cruise ship. While filling your plate from hundreds of chocolate choices, you could admire a dozen creative chocolate sculptures, including a chocolate ship complete with chocolate sails and rigging.

My worst chocolate experience was visiting a chocolate factory in Las Vegas. To be sure it was interesting to see how the chocolate was made, but to be offered only one free sample at the end? Sheer cruelty.

What's your best chocolate experience?


  1. Wow, that buffet sounds absolutely awesome. I did something similar in las vegas a few years back and it was heaven! Am drooling now!

  2. Oh, it is a very good thing I'm eating lunch as I read this! :) Your A-Z theme is delicious.

  3. These foods look delicious, especially the chocolate trifle. Yum!
    My best chocolate experience...probably a flourless chocolate cake I once had for my birthday.

  4. Chocolate, the perfect C! I am a serious chocoholic. I grew up in Belgium, and before concerts, while most of my friends would have a beer or a drink, I'd stop by one of the many chocolatiers in Brussels and pick a few treats.

  5. Chocolate? My chocolate stomach gets filled at Christmas when we order See's chocolates. The rest of the family eats most of them, but I still buy them because my mother always bought See's.

  6. Death by chocolate - YUM! Now, I have to go scour the cabinet for some form of chocolate to appease my sudden craving. ;-)

    New follower here. I’m enjoying reading my fellow “A to Z”ers. I look forward to visiting again.


  7. One of my favorites is peanut M&Ms. Excuse while I go get some...

  8. Oh man. Now I want some chocolate and there is none in the house! Oh well. Enjoyed your top 10 list of chocolate items.
    : )


  9. OMG! Your C post should have been illegal! I need to quit stopping by here so late at night. I am now craving chocolate! Thanks for sharing, yummy!

    Happy A to Z-ing!

  10. Mmm. I approve of everything in this post. :)

  11. My mouth started watering long before I got to the end of your list. Oh, heaven.



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