Chocolate: Your raison d’être

Pain au chocolat at Chicago

Macaroons, éclairs, croissants, tarts… the French have an almost endless variety of ways to express their love of chocolate.

This love goes back many centuries, to when Anne of Austria brought chocolate to France with her marriage to King Louis XIII in 1615. At first chocolate was primarily drunk as a hot beverage, but chocolate bonbons, pastries and glaces soon exploded in popularity.

Perhaps the reputation of chocolate as an aphrodisiac had something to do with its popularity; even Louis XV’s mistress, Madame du Pompadour was said to eat and drink chocolate daily in an effort to keep up with the royal demands. Marie-Antoinette, of course, had her own personal chocolatier, who probably provided her with plenty of cake.

Chocolate also became a fashionable pastime for the middle class

The very first chocolate shop opened in Paris in 1659, and cafes featuring chocolate-based food and drink began popping up all over Europe. By the 1800s, chocolates were widely sold as medicine to promote “health and vigor.”

Modern research suggests some merit to this idea; French dark chocolate is the world’s least sweet chocolate, but on the other hand it’s also the least fattening. Chocolate with higher than 70% cacao content has been linked to improved cardiovascular and digestive health.

So feel free to indulge in a cup of hot chocolate as an alternative to coffee or tea. Pair it with pain aux chocolat or a creamy, crunch chocolate macaron, even an escargot au chocolat – it’s good for you.

Maison Parisienne invites you to come speak the universal language of chocolate.

Copyright : Joy

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