Monday, April 13, 2015

Chocolate Tasting With Seed and Bean


A tiny smidge of dark chocolate is my favorite way of staying on track without giving up everything. To be fair, I'm not really a dieter, but I do try to refrain from stuffing my face with Reese's Cups. I tend to opt for either homemade sweet treats, fresh fruit, something from a local bakery or a bit of fancy dark chocolate when time is a luxury, but my sweet tooth is screaming. I fell in love with Seed and Bean shortly after the Whole Foods opened in Fulham when I purchased both the Lavender and Cornish Sea Salt varieties. They're so lush and since they're organic, Fairtrade, sometimes Vegan and always handmade in England, I don't feel one bit guilty about eating them. In fact it's a rare moment when I don't practically congratulate myself on the purchase of a Seed and Bean bar - after all, this isn't your kids' Cadbury bar. This is serious chocolate… Grown-up chocolate and I keep it on hand whenever possible for moments of weakness or just pure joy.

Seed and Bean boasts a long list of interesting flavors, so I set out to taste a few more...

 Extra Dark Chocolate
Seed and Bean Organic Extra Dark Chocolate
Dark chocolate is something I use a lot at home, whether I'm nibbling on it, throwing it into savory dishes or using it in my baking. I tend to be a bit lazy sometimes and buy whatever I can find in the grocery store thinking that chocolate is chocolate, especially being mixed in with other ingredients… Seed and Bean is proving that I've been wrong all this time.

72% Cocoa and yet I'm surprised at how smooth the Seed and Bean Extra Dark Chocolate is. It would be no trouble to sit down and eat the whole bar in one sitting, although I couldn't stop thinking about how yummy this chocolate would be in a batch of homemade brownies. There's a rich, depth of flavor in this chocolate without the typical bitterness that I haven't tasted elsewhere. It's a winner!

Raspberry and Vanilla Creamy White Chocolate
Seed and Bean Organic Raspberry and Vanilla Creamy White Chocolate
Typically I shy away from any chocolate with a fruit in it… I don't always enjoy fruit that's been altered from its natural state by cooking, drying, etc. however for the sake of this post, I gave the Seed and Bean Raspberry and Vanilla Creamy White Chocolate a try. What most surprised me, having bought similar bars from other brands for my husband, was the color.

Pink! Pink! Pink! Love the pretty blush tone of this chocolate - it's so inviting. The flavor is lovely… Super sweet white chocolate with hints of vanilla broken up by the sharp, sour punch of raspberry just when its needed. Though this wouldn't normally be my favorite as I tend to crave bitter or savory more than sweet, it's incredibly lovely.

Just Ginger Fine Dark Chocolate
Seed and Bean Organic Just Ginger Fine Dark Chocolate
This one probably scared me the most… I spent some time trying to work out what the combination of ginger and dark chocolate would be like in a candy bar. I couldn't come up with any idea that was close to the taste of this lovely bar of chocolate.

To be fair, I couldn't really taste the ginger, but compared to the Extra Dark Chocolate, there is a difference in flavor. All I can say about this is that its lovely and even if you're not a fan of ginger (I don't love it), try it anyway… It's more of a complement than something overpowering and it gives a warmth to the chocolate that's impossible to describe. A chocolate spice cake could benefit from using Just Ginger instead of the usual cooking chocolate in the baking aisle at the grocery store.

What's the verdict?

If I had to choose a favorite, I would have to go with the Extra Dark Chocolate, however Just Ginger comes in at a close second.  I would find either very useful in my house for both cooking and nibbling.
Do you have a favorite flavor from Seed and Bean? I'd love to hear your recommendations - there are so many to try!

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