Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Another Change of Mind in Chocolate Reviews

Aside from the demands of my palate, one of the main reasons I've been limiting myself to dark chocolate exclusively is because I was under the assumption that lesser amounts of cacao/cocoa meant that a greater amount of sugar would take its place. Consequently, for my Paleo diet I've been avoiding things such as milk chocolate. However, a friend spoke fondly of a milk chocolate under an organic brand I liked, so out of curiosity I checked its wrapper while in a store. To my surprise, even with its low cocoa percentage (under 40%), it still had a very tolerable level of sugar. It even bested out other much darker varieties, like a 60% one I examined. Its ingredients list was also largely unoffensive to my dietary standards, remaining about equal with other dark varieties I've eaten before. And no, they didn't distort the sugar listing by breaking the information into smaller serving sizes. That means that a lower cocoa/cacao percentage doesn't necessary mean an increase of objectionable ingredients or sugar amount.

As such, I'm thinking about incorporating a broader category of chocolates into my reviews to add more variation and spice, and to also increase what's available to me. Dark chocolate is the only candy I eat, with maybe some fruit leather also, so I'd like to liven it up a little. Overall, my standards will change to allow for chocolates of varying cocoa/cacao percentages so long as the company provides a listed percentage (outing varieties that simply say "dark" or "milk" without qualification) and so long as the bar lists Paleo-friendly ingredients, barring the amount of sugar (since it's the amount I'm concerned with, not that it's there) and soy lecithin (since it's pretty much in the vast majority of chocolates). That means I won't try such things as organic chocolates with grain infusions like cookie crumbles, or any chocolate that includes any other component of soy or soy in whole, such as soy extract.

Overall, I'm just going for what I'd call clean chocolates: chocolates that have varying cocoa/cacao strengths, but are at the same time acceptable in dietary moderation. To tell you the truth I'm not sure if I'll keep this standard, but I did buy some varieties that are contrary to the norm. I am at the very least willing to try this as an experiment to see how it goes.

Hope it provokes your cravings. There's some intriguing stuff I'm anxious to try.

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