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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Since the time I met my wife in 2006, and we began dating in 2007, I've noticed it's harder and harder to avoid chocolate-free dessert options. Thing is, she's not into chocolate...never has been.

This discussion came up over dinner for a birthday party, where a sample platter of cheesecake was brought out for dessert...literally every different flavor had some sort of chocolate on it! There was a standard double-chocolate and a normal cheesecake with chocolate swirl, both on graham cracker crusts; caramel cheesecake and raspberry cheesecake, both on chocolate crusts; and the little wedge of plain/vanilla cheesecake. Now, the entire thing was topped with shavings of white chocolate, so even the plain pieces had chocolate on them.

Then, onto the ice cream selection...the local coolers have even begun stocking strawberry ice cream with chocolate swirls! The only non-chocolate ice creams for dessert were butter pecan and a strawberry frogurt.

I can remember, nary more than a decade ago, when cheesecakes were a vessel for fruit, bearing a golden crown of graham cracker crust. Blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, and cherries were the standard choice of topping for cheesecake...chocolate was reserved for regular ol' cake. And, there were plenty of non-chocolate ice creams as well. I distinctly remember an orange cream that a local store used to handle, along with pistachio, mint (not mint-chip), rum raisin, strawberry, pecan praline, etc. Seems like none of the local stores carry any of those anymore.

So...what gives with all the chocolate everywhere?
 

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Chocolate's an easy sell. A safe bet when making desserts that have to be made in advance and hopefully sold. For every person who doesn't like chocolate, there are 10,000 who do or at the very least, will eat it anyway. And chocolate décor such as the shavings and other little chocolate whatsits people like to decorate desserts with are easily pushed to the side for those who don't like them. Though I find it kinda odd that she would lump white chocolate into a chocolate dislike if she's okay with vanilla. Even the best of white chocolates is only loosely called chocolate based on it's cocoa butter content. There is no cocoa content which is the primary reason chocolate tastes like chocolate. I could understand if it was a textural thing but you mentioned chocolate in a variety of textures that she still doesn't like.

The ice cream thing probably comes down to the same thing. If you have 30 flavors, it's easy to spread out the variety. If you have 3 or 4 flavors, choices have to be made and the majority either likes or is okay with chocolate. Probably sucks for the non-chocolate people but tossing a gallon of mint (not chip) or rum raisin because they only sold one scoop of each sucks for the business. So they play the better odds.
 

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Russian Troll Farmer
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I feel your pain. Being on a renal diet, I have to avoid phosphorus, and chocolate is just loaded with it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I'm just a little confused with the apparent proliferation of chocolate on everything (cheese too, but that's another thread). Did I just have my head buried in the sand, totally ignorant of double-chocolate EVERYTHING before, or is this some recent phenomena?
 

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I'm just a little confused with the apparent proliferation of chocolate on everything (cheese too, but that's another thread). Did I just have my head buried in the sand, totally ignorant of double-chocolate EVERYTHING before, or is this some recent phenomena?
It's not particularly recent in the dessert world, maybe you just didn't think about it as much before you were with someone who wants to avoid it. And I'm right there with you on the cheese thing. Cheese is good but it doesn't make everything better. Of course, neither does bacon and that shows up everywhere too.
 

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I imagine there are still all kinds of fruit pies and tarts, custards, flans, etc. available. I find most chocolate either boring or ersatz and go for a non-chocolate option myself if possible.
 

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Cranky Old Bastard
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A chef on a PBS cooking show was just talking about how we were told to avoid chocolate up until a decade or so ago when they discovered it actually does have some health benefits. Now, with that "stamp of approval" it's everywhere and on everything.
I've been addicted all my life; to we with ADD chocolate is definitely a feel-good drug.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I imagine there are still all kinds of fruit pies and tarts, custards, flans, etc. available. I find most chocolate either boring or ersatz and go for a non-chocolate option myself if possible.
Strangely, that's not something that I've been aware of. There's the example I pointed to in the OP about a few different brands of cheesecake, there are a handful of times that we've gone to an ice cream parlor only to find that everything had chocolate in it (few and far between, but it has happened), it just seems more common than it should. I, too, would think that there would be a rich/creamy/chocolatey option for dessert as well as a light/fluffy/fruity option...but heck, even at a company Christmas event, the only options were chocolate cheesecake, tiramisu (not chocolatey in and of itself, but it was prepared with a bunch of chocolate), and a vegan chocolate cake for the meatless guests.

A chef on a PBS cooking show was just talking about how we were told to avoid chocolate up until a decade or so ago when they discovered it actually does have some health benefits. Now, with that "stamp of approval" it's everywhere and on everything.
I've been addicted all my life; to we with ADD chocolate is definitely a feel-good drug.
...And that's what I've been talking about. Do you remember which show?

I kinda laugh because every girl I've ever dated didn't like chocolate, nor were they ticklish...the odd handful of dates I went on before I met my wife always seemed to have some kind of fruity option, but since then, that's less and less common.
 

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Cranky Old Bastard
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...And that's what I've been talking about. Do you remember which show?
According to the TV guide it was Christina Cooks: "Calling All Chocoholics, the Season 1 finale explains how to make chocolate part of a healthy diet."

Her brownies did look especially inviting.
 

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gazing from the shadows
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Chocolate's an easy sell. A safe bet when making desserts that have to be made in advance and hopefully sold.
And chocolate is always in season, so chocolate menu items can stay on the menu all year round. No problem with it being under/over ripe or smashed in shipping. No problem with the perfect bits being perfect for two weeks, and then sliding downhill in quality. No problem with someone telling a friend that they had the best pie last week, and when the friend goes in two weeks, it's just not all that it was built up to be.

I love good fruit based desserts myself. But the chocolate stuff is more reliable when dining out, most of the time.
 
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