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HAPPINESS IS …………..
“Aristotle reminds us to “Stop hoping for happiness tomorrow. Happiness is being engaged in the process” . 384-322 BC
* “Happiness is as a butterfly which, when pursued is always beyond our grasp but which if you will sit down quietly, may alight upon you.”
Goodtaste asks, “What happy butterfly moment will you experience today?”
*Quote from Arthur Brooks article found in
Chocolate Brings Smiles!
It must be magic because just the mention of chocolate seems to bring a smile to a person’s face. It is true that this special treat creates good feelings and a bit of happiness. As the demand for higher quality chocolate is growing and dark chocolate is receiving favorable reviews in health journals, we are starting to hear more about artisan choclatiers creating “craft chocolate” superior products and “bean to bar,” which means that this chocolate is made by one company with whole beans from scratch. All chocolate starts as whole beans, but many companies roast them in large batches and then combine them with sugar, vanilla and other additives.
Chocolate Tips from Great Chefs
You might expect all the recipes to be also sugary sweet, but the surprising thing we found was that some of the best chefs are adding darker, less sweet chocolate to appetizers, entrees, and salads.
The Wonderful World of Chocolate at the Hershey Hotel
About Healthy Chocolate:
Dark chocolate has been shown to be a good source of heart protective antioxidants, known as flavanols. Flavanols are often limited or absent in milk and white chocolate. Raw unprocessed cocoa is a naturally very rich source of flavanols, which may confer several heart healthy benefits.
Research supports the role of flavanols in health protective antioxidants.
Flavanols are bitter and often are removed during the manufacturing process of chocolate. Watch out for the phrase “processed with alkali” or “Dutch Cocoa” on the chocolate package. If it is treated with an alkali to make its pH neutral, it will have a milder flavor but is not as healthy as natural cocoa. The higher the cocoa content, the more antioxidants it contains. It does have fat and calories if consumed in excess.
Dark Chocolate Stout Beer Cake
European double chocolate beer cake with smoked almonds
About the Recipe: The cake has a delightful blend of flavors, enhanced by the chocolate stout, dark chocolate, and bits of prunes. It is beautiful to serve with a smooth chocolate ganache and crunchy smoked almond topping.
Hershey Hotel Spa
Rejuvenate Your Mind, Body, and Spirit:
A perfect way to discover a happy feeling and indulge in a little special treatment is to visit The Spa at The Hotel Hershey. It is affectionately known as the Chocolate Spa. Cody Byrnes, a Spa employee, took me on a tour of the facilities to see where guests experience the innovative treatments like the whipped cocoa bath, cocoa bean polish, and cocoa facial experiences. I loved the library area, complete with a fireplace, warm coffee, and even fresh-baked chocolate chip muffins. That kind of relaxation had my name written all over it. Besides all the fitness & wellness opportunities, the guests can enjoy a fresh lunch and desserts at The Oasis. I just knew that chocolate was good for me, inside and out.
Of course, I couldn’t leave The Spa area without talking to Shian Wing, the SPA Director, who shared how their organic product line was developed.
The products, filled with a sweet chocolate spirit, were too hard to resist so some of them came home with me too.
Chocolate luxury – What Fun!
The SPA Chocolate Sugar Scrub
The SPA Cocoa Body Lotion
The SPA Cocoa Body Wash
The SPA Whipped Cocoa Bath
Orchids, one of the largest flowering plant families, are so elegant and are said to represent love, luxury, beauty, and strength. As we looked at the beautiful orchids at the Orchid Exhibit, we noticed that every species had a unique look. It’s interesting to think how much we are like orchids. beautiful and unique!
For More Information See:
Butterflies and flowers connect us to the beauty, grace, and elegance in nature. They amaze us with their energy, symbolism, and powerful representations of life. Native Americans celebrate them in a spirit of renewal and hope. Butterflies leave us with lessons to guide our own life. One stage dies away and then they return with a new vibrancy, a lesson representing change and transformation. Many people around the world view them as symbols of endurance, change, hope, and life.
For More Information See:
Chef Ken Gladysz, the Executive Chef at the Hotel Hershey, shared his ideas about the “Chocolate Dinner Extraordinaire”.
He said, “This dinner challenges us to come up with interesting and new ways to expose our guests to chocolate. Hopefully, in ways that they might have never thought about before. We are going to do a Dark Chocolate Braised Pork Shank,today. This is a great cut that is underutilized. The dark chocolate really compliments the pork and gives the shank a dark and appetizing look. Pork I feel is underused and at this dinner, it really gets the chance to shine.”
He believes that it’s a great event. The menu is always new, and the wine pairings are all well thought out. It is a great way to experience an iconic ingredient, like chocolate in a totally different way. The atmosphere of the dinner is always upbeat, fun, and exciting.
Chef Ken Gladysz – Executive Chef Hershey Hotel
Chocolate Dinner Extraordinaire
Chef Ken Gladysz and his culinary staff from The Hotel Hershey welcomed us to the Castilian Room for an exceptional 5-course chocolate-infused dinner to kick off, “The Chocolate-Covered February in Hershey” month.
Hershey Dark Chocolate Braised Beef Short Ribs
‘The rich red wine dark chocolate sauce is “over the top”
About the Recipe: Tender and full of flavor, these boneless beef short ribs make an elegant entrée for a special dinner. The herbs and caramelized vegetables nestle with the tender, soft pot roast meat, covered with a rich chocolate flavored, red wine tomato sauce. What a yummy dish this is!
Complimentary Chef Demo by Chef Maria Dietz – Sous Chef
Complimentary Chef Demonstration
Chef Maria Dietz, Sous Chef from The Hotel Hershey, prepared Roasted Beef Bruschetta, Spaghetti with Dark Chocolate Bolognese Sauce and Nutella Crespelle.
Beet Bruschetta with Easy Apricot Agrodolce
Crostini layered with white chocolate ricotta, beets and sweet/sour apricots
‘About the Recipe: Crisp toasted Italian bread slices are spread with white chocolate flavored ricotta cheese, topped with tender red beets, sweet/sour diced dried apricots, and fresh green parsley leaves. What a delightful new appetizer to serve!
Blenditarian Dark Chocolate Bolognese Sauce with Spaghetti
Add some healthy mushrooms for added nutrition
About the Recipe: We added a healthy Blenditarian touch to this classic recipe, adding some nutritious mushrooms in place of all meat. The recipe makes about 8 cups, so it can be used to prepare several meals or be frozen until needed. It does have a long cooking time, so it would make a great slow cooker recipe. One taste of that rich thick sauce takes you right to Italy for dinner. Just add some of that delicious crunchy Italian bread.
Chef Cher Harris – Executive Pastry Chef – Hotel Hershey
Hershey Classic Chocolate Pie Recipe
Chocolate High Tea – Hershey Hotel
Chocolate High Tea at The Hotel Hershey
We enjoyed finger sandwiches, an array of chocolate desserts, and a variety of hot and cold teas
Hershey’s Dark Chocolate Chip Scones
Use sweet oranges with dark chocolate
‘About the Recipe: Flaky and oh, so crisp, these full-of-flavor bright orange-enhanced scones reveal rich dark chocolate chips, hidden like little delightful surprises. Orange and chocolate are a favorite flavor combo. Perfect for your next brunch or breakfast party.
Wine/Chocolate Pairing at the Hotel Hershey
Wine & Chocolate Pairing
We learned about pairing Wine & Chocolate and the various flavor combinations
Hershey’s Chocolate Dessert Buffet
Hershey’s Chocolate Dessert Buffet
Chef Cher Harris and her pastry team prepared an array of special Chocolate Covered February Desserts for everyone to enjoy.
Foods That are Happy Mood Makers
Making Moods Go Up and Down
Nutrition experts will tell you that the foods you eat control your emotions, bringing you smiles or tears. Are you experiencing a roller-coaster ride from blood sugar packed with too many sweets and refined flour? Are those little guys in your gut in distress from fad diets or constipated by a lack of fiber and water?
Adding a touch of dark chocolate is the secret ingredient
About the Recipe: This hummus recipe adds a touch of dark chocolate to enhance the flavor and add some additional health benefits. Chef Ken uses a unique technique that creates a light hummus texture. Since he spent time in the Middle East, he was able to add an international flair to this popular appetizer.
Ezme -Turkish Tomato Pepper Salad
A spicy side dish salad served in Turkish restaurants
About the Recipe: This is a spicy Turkish salsa or mezze type dish, served as a side dish or type of salad. If serving a larger party, double this recipe.
Savory Spiced Salmon Tabouli Wraps
Wrap up a spicy salmon salad
About the Recipe :All the steps can be prepared ahead of time and easily served together as open faced sandwiches or flatbread wraps. The recipe is packed with healthy ingredients that are effective in treating inflammatory diseases. The omega 3’s from the added salmon is known to alter brain chemicals that are linked with mood. Healthy is happy!
Roasted Vegetable Kale Salad with Stuffed Mini Delicata Squash
Dark Chocolate lightly flavors a roasted vegetable kale salad
About the Recipe: Combine your favorite roasted vegetables with a fresh kale salad for a surprising result. Adding a date-sweetened balsamic dressing, which combines with the olive oil roasted vegetables, creates this new healthy salad. It is even better if it marinates overnight
Forbidden Tropical Black Rice Pudding
A dessert that promises a long life of good health
About this Recipe: Take a trip to the tropics with the island flavors of mango and coconut blended into vanilla rum black rice pudding. The warm pudding is swirled with mini chocolate chips, drizzled with chilled coconut milk, topped with fresh chunks of mango, and dusted with toasted coconut. One taste and you will discover why it was forbidden.
Berry Chocolate Chia Pudding
Avocados and berries magically turn into chocolate tapioca tasting pudding
About the Recipe: This recipe is amazing! When you mix all the ingredients together, you start to wonder if it will really turn into a pudding, but as it chills, it magically thickens into a rich chocolate pudding with the chia seeds swirling throughout the pudding like tiny tapiocas. Spoon into pudding cups, fancy glasses, or chocolate dessert cups; garnish with your favorite berries, nuts, or mini chips. Anything in a chocolate cup must be delicious.
Fruit ‘n Nut Chocolate Truffles
A healthy dark chocolate sweet treat
About the Recipe: If you want something sweet, try one of these nutritious truffles. I love the idea that they are made from dried fruit and nuts. The thick fudgy nugget is coated with a layer of ground almonds. What a special healthy treat!
……………………Be in the Know!
- Did You Know That Heartbreak Affects the Brain?
- Resting in Retirement Sounds Great but Isn’t Good for Your Brain Health
- What Do Opioids Do in the Brain that Cause Death?
- Should Your School Should Have A Before School Exercise Program?
- Why Should Our Diet Have Fiber-Rich Foods?
- Do You Know the Health and Nutritional Value of Mushrooms?
Internet Radio Podcast
‘Tune into the Creating Calm Network Radio broadcast of Gloria Piantek- Food for Your Body, Mind, and Spirit episode airing at 3:00 PM ET – Sunday- Feb 18th or “On Demand” at your convenience after the initial airing.
Each Month we invite you to:
- Hear from experts about various trending topics.
- Learn how to make delicious recipes
- Product Shout Out: Products you may want to try
- Research: -Be in the Know. – New research on health, learning, and creativity.
- Listen to our monthly 3:ooPM ET on 3rd Sunday of every month internet broadcasts from your computer as well as “On Demand” for our previous broadcasts.
- Share your ideas, suggestions, and recipes with us
**That is the name some of my friends call me. My real name is Gloria Piantek.
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