Sunday 7 July is World Chocolate Day and I can’t think of a better food deserved of its own special 24 hours.
Chocolate is a part of everyday life. My everyday life, that’s for sure. In fact, whenever I nick down to the shops to buy a carton of milk and a loaf of bread, rarely do I walk away without also having purchased a chocolate bar. My latest addiction: anything from the Darrell Lea chocolate slab range.
I’ve always thought chocolate should have its own day marked on the festive calendar, especially since it is so widely appreciated, has infiltrated so many cultural diets, often creeps into popular culture, and is now being deemed very good for you.
Studies have shown chocolate helps prevent liver damage, boosts beneficial cholesterol, offers better brain power, and lowers blood pressure.
I remember my first encounter with Lindt Chocolate. Not at a sample stand at the supermarket, but seen on the 12” artwork of Scritti Politti’s slice of audio confection, Hypnotize. I’d listen to the music relentlessly and just stare at this chocolate bar, my mouth watering.
Back in 1985, you couldn’t find Lindt easily in Perth shops, so this was definitely my fantasy outlet. Nowadays, of course, there are hundreds of forms of Lindt that line the aisles of Woolworths and Coles, available for a fraction of the price the luxury brand used to cost.
Now, too, local chocolate brands are offering hundreds of diversions to the norm. Once where you used to only be able to get three types of chocolate – milk, dark or white – chocolate bars today are packed with just about anything you can imagine. Cadbury’s, as one example, comes out with a limited edition bar every other week.
And, get this, Cadbury now has a milk chocolate printer that can be used to print digitally-created chocolate ‘charms’, which include a selection of letters, shapes and symbols. The printer will be on display at Myer Chadstone in Sydney, with customers able to create their own choccies from July 7 – 28. Charms will be priced at $8 for a set of two or $15 for four.
With recent scientific studies showing chocolate is more good for you than bad (some chocolate helps prevent liver damage, boosts beneficial cholesterol, offers better brain power, and lowers blood pressure), there’s no reason not to celebrate the good stuff this weekend.
All. Without. Feeling. Guilty.