{November 15, 2009}   Sweet high-the purple haze of a Confessed Chocaholic.

Chocolate. Chocolat. Cikolata. Schokolade. ช็อคโกแลต.(this is Thai). These Words when pronounced in any language and any accent produce the same expression of bemused Ecstasy of a person in the Agonies of Chocolate Slavery. I am a confessed Slave to the dark Aphrodisiac. My gastronomic lover and Ninth Muse, she resides in a special corner of my heart, ready to overwhelm my senses and befu-de-duddle my Brain. The thick,slurpy, depths of  pure molten schokolade was first used in a frothy restorative beverage by the Aztecs. Now you know the secret behind the power of that clan. Cacao bean derived Devilish Delight which the Egyptians called Tchocoatl.

Chocolat is a powerful yet benevolent master. It enchains one in its sweet taste while exuding an odor, which intoxicates like the strange scent of a woman yearning for her lover. It has ingredients that bewitch a cynical mind,buffer a lugubrious heart and excite the blood running through one’s veins. It is a patron to the soulless,a companion to the lonely,an addiction to the deprived. It is my master and my mistress,it is the Kane to my Abel, the apple to my Eve.

Coming down from the clouds and mystic haze created by the sweet high which comes from overdosing on cacao bean derivatives,let us foray for an instant into the origins of this wondrous elixir. it is made from the beans of a plant called Theobroma cacao. The beans are extracted, fermented and dried for about a week. Then its off to Willy Wonka’s factory!! So here are the technical details of Charlie’s visit to that factory which Dahl kind of glossed over. These bean shells are then separated from their insides called the ‘nibs’. This is the part that is used to actually make the thick chocolate liquor. These are then ground in a process called milling. (Sigh I am slowly getting bored…need more theobromin highs..) Then finally chocolate is made by adding milk sugar mix,cocoa butter(slurrrp) to the chocolate liquor. Voila! C’est magnifique!  Chocolat est pret!

Drifting into the dubious domains of purple haze now…ahem..we shall try to dissect the shroud of mystery behind the curious hold that chocolate has over its Senate. Chocolate mainly has the following-

Theobromin- A caffeine like molecule which stimulates the central nervous system and has diuretic and cardiotonic effects. In plain english that means good for the brain and the heart.

Anandamide- “Ananda” means happy literally in Hindi. This particular drug does just that. Makes you delirious. Its a sister to tetrahydrocannabinol, a chemical we better know as marijuana. This does not have the seductive personality traits of its sister though and is not addictive..(though many chocaholics would disagree) essentially it has the same effect. Delirium.

PEA- The “Love Drug”. Wish I could bottle this stuff and market it. Basically phenylethylamine has the same effects as a tall,dark,handsome guy would have on the pulse rate and heart rate of the afflicted individual. Accelerate it manifold. Hence called mild love drug..AAAnd presenting the Do-It-Yourself Inducible lovekit. I like to call it the Opium den of chocolate.

Serotonins-  The dark silken surface of these bars hold another spike for your anatomical cocktail. These are chemicals which reduce depression. Clinically tested and proven. Lo and behold! Euphoria!

So all you worshippers in the Temple Of Chocolate, this is one addiction that will probably brighten your day,enliven your spirits,convince you you’re the next Jimi Hendrix and leave you praying for more. But this is one addiction you’ll never have to go to rehab for. So celebrate the enslavement of your palate and surrender the mesolimbic pleasure centers of your brain to the sweet ministrations of this dark and mysterious geisha! Go out and spread the word in the Republic of Chocolate!!

N.B. Currently this chocaholic is on a double high. Caffeine high-check. Chocolate sweet high-check. So I sincerely apologize for the mindless piece of pure and unadulterated crap that I have churned out in the grips of my purple haze.








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