Monday, March 16, 2009

American Chocolate Week

Did you know this week is American Chocolate Week? I didn't either. I don't know about you, but my favorite food is chocolate. In fact, I have been known to say "if eating chocolate is a sin, call me a sinner". I don't know if I'm addicted to it, but I do know that I try not to let a day go by without imbibing something chocolate. In fact, I'm drinking chocolate milk right now.

One of my favorite Library databases is the Encyclopedia of Food and Culture. I looked up chocolate; one point in the article stood out to me. Chocolate, apparently, has more than one hundred medicinal uses. "[A]nd the majority fall into three main categories: 1) to aid emaciated patients in gaining weight; 2) to stimulate the nervous systems of apathetic, exhausted, or feeble individuals; and 3) to improve digestion, stimulate the kidneys (diuretic), and improve bowel function." I, myself, use it to stimulate the exhausted nervous system all the time.

After checking out the database, I decided to wander around the cookbook section here at Central (the 640s for those of you who don't know). There are a lot of great looking books about chocolate. Check some of these out when you're at the Library, you will not be disappointed. In fact, if you make the Hot Fudge Pudding Cake in the Here in America's Test Kitchen cookbook from the editors of one of my favorite magazines, Cook's Illustrated, you will have so many friends that you'll have to make it on a regular basis. In fact, let me know when you make it so I can come over. (It's on page 318.)

Here's a nice list to get you started:
A Passion for Chocolate
Bake and Freeze Chocolate Desserts by Elinor Klivans
Death by Chocolate Cakes by Marcel Desaulniers
Chocolate from the Cake Mix Doctor by Anne Byrn (one of my favorite cookbook authors)
Chocolate Cake by Michele Urvater

A little bit of the back story:
The True History of Chocolate by Sophie D. and Michael D. Coe
The Chocolate Connoisseur by Chloe Doutre-Roussel
Chocolate A Bittersweet Saga of Dark and Light by Mort Rosenblum

And, just in case you think you shouldn't, Suzanne Somers says it's okay:
Somersize Chocolate 30 Delicious, Guilt-Free Recipes for the Carb-Conscious Chocolate Lover

Have a chocolate-y week! I know I will.

(photo from FreeFoto.)

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