I was wandering around a Publix supermarket for the first time recently, and came up with a new topic for an exotic/disgusting food. (FYI, Publix is a very good market, based largely in the
SE U.S. Another place to get spotted dick, for example. Wait, let me rephrase that—they have a good variety of food and drink items, including English foods with names begging to be double entendred.) Anyway, in the candy aisle I beheld, next to the usual bars, chocolate chili—“dark chocolate infused with spicy red chili.” I couldn’t resist this odd mix and bought it straight away.
While doing my usual half-assed research on the particular food item I’m going to post about, I discovered this combination isn’t as weird as it may have initially looked. Because the original developers of chocolate, the people of South and
Central America, were used to a much different sort of chocolate than most modern folks are. Throughout most of chocolate’s history (at lease 3,000 years), it was a bitter drink. The Aztecs refined this further by adding spices, including chili pepper. It was the Europeans who added sugar and milk to sweeten it, and later developed a way to form it into solid bars, like the candy most of us are familiar with. So, the good people at Lindt & Sprungli were actually kicking it old school, so to speak, but offering up their chocolate chili combo.
I gave it a taste, and was very favorably impressed. I’m normally more of proponent of light, or milk chocolate rather than dark chocolate, but this was very good—the slight bitterness was not unpleasant at all. And, just like the package said, the chili spice comes in at the end, giving it a cool but not overpowering “bite.” So chalk up another victory for opposites complimenting and completing each other in a new, different way. And normally I might be inclined to mock anyone who calls themselves a “Master Chocolatier,” but the quality of these Swiss folks’ product shut me right the hell up. Rumor has it that this company (or another gourmet chocolate company) makes a chocolate-bacon baby, and I’m hoping to get a hold of that one, too.