NATIONAL WHITE CHOCOLATE DAY

Sunday, September 22, 2019

National White Chocolate Day is observed annually on September 22. The first white chocolate bar was launched in Europe by Nestle. Besides candy bars and fudge, white chocolate also comes in liqueurs, chips, ganache, truffles and liquid forms. Enjoy your favorite white chocolate with this Easy White-Chocolate Clusters with Fruit and Nuts recipe listed below.

 

Because white chocolate does not contain cocoa solids, is not chocolate in the strictest sense. During the process of manufacturing chocolate, the dark-colored solids of the cocoa bean are separated from the fatty content, but unlike milk or dark chocolate, they are not reincorporated. As a result, white chocolate does not contain as much caffeine or antioxidants as its darker counterparts.

Five Food Finds about Chocolate:

• White chocolate originates from the cocoa (cacao) plant, but it is not ‘chocolate.’

• According to the FDA, to be called ‘chocolate’ a product must contain chocolate liquor, which is what gives it the biter intense chocolate flavor (and color) to dark and milk chocolates.

• White chocolate contains cocoa butter, milk solids, sugar, lecithin and flavorings (usually including vanilla). Cocoa butter is the fat from cocoa beans, extracted from the cocoa beans during the process of making chocolate and cocoa powder. Cocoa butter has very little ‘chocolate’ flavor.

• Cocoa butter is one of the ingredients used to make real chocolate, it is gives chocolate the ability to remain solid at room temperature, yet melt easily in the mouth.

• Cocoa butter is one of the most stable fats known, containing natural antioxidants that prevent rancidity and give it a storage life of 2 to 5 years. It is used for its smooth texture in foods (including chocolate) and in cosmetics and soaps.

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Easy White-Chocolate Clusters with Fruit and Nuts

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Prep                  Total                    Yield
    15 min               15 min              20 Servings
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INGREDIENTS

• 1 1/2 cups assorted dried fruits and toasted nuts, (choose among raisins, cherries, cranberries, chopped apricots, almonds, pecans, walnuts, hazelnuts, pistachios, and macadamia nuts)
• 1 package (12 ounces) white-chocolate chips

DIRECTIONS

1. Line a baking sheet with waxed paper. In a small bowl, combine dried fruits and nuts.

2. Heat white-chocolate chips in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water, stirring until smooth.

3. Drop level tablespoons of melted chocolate onto prepared sheet, 2 inches apart. Mound fruit-nut mixture on top, pressing in gently. Refrigerate until set, 15 to 20 minutes.

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NATIONAL PECAN COOKIE DAY

Saturday, September 21, 2019

Each year on September 21, people across the United States celebrate National Pecan Cookie Day. This delicious cookie can be eaten and enjoyed morning, noon and night by hungry snackers everywhere. To celebrate National Pecan Cookie Day, try this ”tried and true” Raisin Pecan Oatmeal Cookies recipe listed below.

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Reach for one of these healthy ingredients the next time your head is pounding.

When a headache strikes, you may run through your usual routine: Turn out the lights, lie down and pop a pain pill. But did you know that certain foods may ease, and even prevent, headaches? Add these soothing foods to your shopping list and find out for yourself.

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