I'm feeling like we can't have enough attention drawn to food labeling regulation. The US food industry is such vast maze of supply and demand that it's infrastructure lends itself to miscommunication and mishap. For the full article click HERE
Charles M. Schulz is known for his famous "Peanuts" cartoons, an irrelevant word play for my purposes here. He also made a very wise statement about chocolate. Die-hard "chocoholics" will have you believe that chocolate is an essential nutrient. Yet, living with food allergies has taught me that as long as a child is emotionally and physically nourished, they really won't feel unduly denied by their inability to eat particular food. At least not often.
And then I found Pascha Chocolate. My other half sent me a link to their site someone had sent to him, knowing, as most friends do that we are a food allergy family. Pascha is "free from peanuts, nuts, soy, eggs, wheat and gluten." Immediately I sensed something new. The first 3 ingredients in all varieties of Pascha chocolate bars are: organic sugar, organic cocoa mass, organic cocoa butter. And that subtle substitution of cocoa mass for chocolate liquor may be one reason that they are by far the most Grown Up allergen safe chocolate bar I've ever tasted.
My son Eden and I tried the basic varieties of Pascha chocolate bar in varying strengths of cacao mass. The 55% was Eden's favorite. It was the sweetest and since he is ten years old it was obvious to me why. However, the 70% bar was a lovely balance of winey and bitter honeyed smoothness. And the 85% bar was abrasive, rich and yet feathery in aftertaste. Pashca bars are contenders in another league of artisinal chocolate; the stuff of foodies, pastry chefs and yes - chocoholics.
I melted a few squares of the 55% on Eden's sourdough bread and the contrast was stunning. I whisked a melted square of the 85% bar into a cup of steamed oatmilk with cinnamon and dash of agave and again, best allergen safe hot cocoa ever. The 70% bar was pretty much eaten within a few days. And that stretch took discipline.
I will soon order the 55% bars with chocolate nibs and with golden berries. If you are reading this and you have food allergies, I suggest you do the same. Can't hurt.
"We gain the strength of the temptation we resist" - Ralph Waldo Emerson
In time for National Allergy & Asthma Awareness this Month, and with Sanofi US, Jerome introduced The Severe Allergy & Anaphylaxis Playbook – a collection of tips to help educate people living with severe allergies, and their friends and family, about avoiding allergens and being prepared in case of an emergency. Bettis, who is severely allergic to shellfish, is encouraging others impacted by severe allergies to download the Playbook HERE.
I had the opportunity to learn more about Jerome's food allergic history during an interview. He went into anaphylaxis when he was teen after eating shrimp fried rice. Since that time he's had to contend with both lifelong asthma and a shellfish allergy. But before eating that fateful Chinese dish, Jerome loved shrimp. I didn't know that when I asked him about TEMPTATION. What I did know is that there are times when even the most diligent food allergic kids and adults truly long to eat, despite the dangers. Here is a video clip of Jerome Bettis talking about overcoming his appetites: Click THIS LINK to play...