For Chocolate Lovers only

Hi! My name is Stephanie Zonis, and welcome to the April, 2003 edition of “For Chocolate Lovers Only”. Every month, you’ll find recipes, tips, and recommendations on great chocolate specialties. Let’s get into the kitchen!

Chocolate Recommendation of the Month: Chocolate lovers everywhere, I call upon you all to assist me in my campaign to stamp out inferior Easter chocolate! Every year, we are confronted with overly-sugary, chocolate-only-in-name “confections” that range from awful-tasting rabbits to synthetically-flavored eggs. Enough, I say! How best to unite against the manufacturers of lesser-quality products? Just look around a bit! There are all kinds of chocolatiers in many countries doing some wonderful work. A star among them is the French chocolatier Bonnat, who produces many fine items, including wonderful chocolate eggs. These are real eggshells, filled with a chocolate-hazelnut mixture (how do they do that, anyway?). They are individually wrapped in tissue paper and 6 are placed in half of an egg carton for a cute presentation.

Unwrap the tissue paper from a Bonnat egg, and crack the shell carefully with a butter knife. Peel it off gently. You’ll see a dark, very thin outer covering (sometimes, this comes off with the shell, alas), surrounding a deeply flavorful chocolate-hazelnut interior of a gorgeous smoothness and richness. These are really too good for the kids—unless your kids have a very sophisticated sense of taste. Expensive? Unquestionably. Worth it? Mais oui! I have only found these Bonnat Eastertide specialties at two companies. Zingerman’s (toll-free at (888) 636-8162, and I don’t see them on the website), and Crossings French Foods (toll-free at (800) 209-6141; they’re listed singly on the website but sold only in cartons of six). Surprise someone special this year with these most unexpected delicacies!

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