Girls Write Out
Monday, December 12, 2005

WHAT? NO CHOCOLATE??!!!

I have to tell you before it’s too late. Before there’s no turning back. Before you hurt yourself--or worse--someone else.

Research can be hazardous.

It’s true. I’m working on edits for my next book. One of my characters is a chocolatier. My editors want me to “beef up” her job. That means doing more research on making gourmet chocolates.

So I roll up my sleeves and get to work. I read how the cocoa bean is dried out, how the cocoa butter is squeezed from the bean, how eventually chocolate is born. My mouth waters with every paragraph. And you know what they say about writers needing to actually “experience” what they’re writing about? Well, who am I to argue?

I heave myself out of my recliner and walk into the kitchen in search of chocolate. I’m pretty confident I have some chocolate chips in the cupboard over the stove. My hand gropes around the shelf in search of the sweets. To my shock and horror, there are none. Okay, no big deal, I’ll try the other cupboard where I sometimes keep them. Not there. Biting my lip, I check the last cabinet. Nothing. Nada. Zip.

Sweat forms over my brow, and my mood definitely dips here. I root through the freezer like a mole digging for a home. Nothing. Heart slams into chest. I’m running out of options. As in, none left.

With fleeting hope, I dig through my cupboard one last time and there--looking every inch like the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow--sits one lone bag of AGED chocolate chips. I hear wine gets better with age. Well, let me just say, the same is not true of chocolate chips.

These gray little dots—aren’t they supposed to be dark brown?--are hard as pebbles. And the taste? Well, it’s just wrong, that’s all.

Still, I eat them. My husband starts to come over to share in my treat, but I stop him in his tracks with one glance. I finish them. Every single one (I know this because I stick my face in the bag to make sure they’re gone).

Have I mentioned that I have to do more research? I won’t even tell you how many chocolate mints I’ve eaten while writing this blog.

Like I said, every job has its hazards. Maybe I’ll get a Curves gift certificate for Christmas . . .
Diann Hunt  
posted at 6:55 AM  
  Comments (10)
 
 
Delicious Delicious
10 Comments:
At 9:48 AM, Blogger Denise Hunter said...

Oh, hilarious, Di! (and what a photo! LOL) And you know what? We've all been there, rooting around for those chocolate chips because they're the only chocolate in the house. How pathetic are we? A month or so ago, I was craving sweets and was even out of chocolate chips, but I found some butterscotch ones. I had a brief recollection of making butterscotch fudge two or three years ago. Let me tell you, the old butterscotch chips are even worse than the old chocolate ones.

 
At 10:59 AM, Blogger Ron Estrada said...

In your next book, make your protag a brocolli farmer or a Curves franchis owner. That'll make up the difference.

 
At 11:50 AM, Blogger Diann Hunt said...

Good idea, Ron--not nearly as much fun, but still a good idea. :-)

Old butterscotch chips, D? That does sound pretty bad. On the other hand, when one is desperate . . .

 
At 2:18 PM, Blogger Malia Spencer said...

Here's the best use for butterscotch AND chocolate. Take a package of brownie mix (yes I'm into convenience but I do have a death by chocolate brownie recipe if anyone is interested), mix it to directions and then pour in half or a whole bag of butterscotch chips and stir. Bake and enjoy when they come out of the oven. The mixture is just right. Add your favorite vanilla ice cream on top and we are talking awesome desert!

This is something my grandma taught us when we were kids. It's easy enough a kid can do it, trust me I've been doing it for 20 something years. I'm in my twenties now so you can do the math. :)

I root for chocolate chips too. We actually have some some in the fridge but that's only because there's other chocolate around the house. We ran out of chocolate a week ago and I was reduced to eating chocolate frosting out of the can. Sad, but a girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do to get her chocolate. Anyone else been reduced to frosting or chocolate baking squares? I just found one I overlooked and tucked it away so I won't be reduced to the now non-existent frosting in the future.

 
At 3:35 PM, Blogger Rhonda Gibson said...

Diann, you are a mess girl! Did you think to look for chocolate syrup? that's pretty yummmy... hehe

 
At 4:05 PM, Blogger Diann Hunt said...

Chocolate frosting out of the can, Malia? Yummy! Been there, done that. Maybe I'll stop and get some on the way home . . .

Death by chocolate brownie recipe? You bet I want it!

Hurry and send it. I'm still working on edits! LOL

Diann

 
At 4:19 PM, Blogger Camy Tang said...

Great picture, Diann!

You poor thing. At least you weren't reduced to snarfing cooking chocolate, right?

I'm fortunate (or unfortunate) to have a husband who likes chocolate more than I do, so we always have something dark and sweet in the fridge (he likes his chocolate cold).

Camy

 
At 7:02 PM, Blogger Malia Spencer said...

All right for Diann and everyone else here's TWO recipes, death by chocolate brownies and an incredible choclate cake.

Double-Chocolate Brownie Recipe
� 1 1/2 cups unsifted flour
� 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
� 1/2 teaspoon salt
� 1 cup butter
� 1 1/2 cups sugar
� 4 tablespoons water
� 2 12-oz package (4 cups) semi-sweet chocolate chips, divided in two
� 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
� 4 eggs
� 1 cup chopped nuts (optional)

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking
soda, and salt; set aside. In medium saucepan, combine butter, sugar, and
water; bring just to a boil. Remove from heat. Add 12-oz chocolate chips and vanilla extract. Stir until chips melt and mixture is smooth. Transfer to large bowl. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
Gradually blend in flour mixture. Stir in remaining 12-oz chips and nuts.
Spread into greased 13-in by 9-in baking pan. Bake at 325, 45-55
minutes. Cool and serve.

Chocolate cake
Combine:
2 cups of flour
3/4 cup Hershey's cocoa
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1tsp salt
2 cups granulated sugar

Add: 1/2 cup Crisco Canola Oil
2 eggs
1 cup milk
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup hot coffee

Beat with an electric mixer. Batter will be very runny. Pour into 9x13" greased baking pan. Bake at 350 degrees until done usually 35 to 40 minutes.

Test with knife or finger tip for cake to spring back.

Qualifier: The brownies work best in a convection oven and or/glass pan. I haven't tried the chocolate cake recipe myself yet but my former boss made it and I loved it so I had to ask for the recipe.

If someone tries it let me know what you think!

 
At 7:31 PM, Blogger Diann Hunt said...

Oh my goodness, Malia, those recipes look WONDERFUL!!! Thank you!!! I wish I had seen this before I went out on my errands tonight. I would have bought the ingredients and snarfed down those brownies yet tonight! Oh well, I'll shop tomorrow. ;-)

Diann

 
At 10:50 PM, Blogger Robin Caroll said...

LOVE the photo, girl!

 

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The Authors
Kristin Billerbeck
Kristin Billerbeck is a proud Californian, wife, mother of four, and connoisseur of the irrelevant. She writes Christian Chick Lit; where she finds need for most of the useless facts lulling about in her head.

www.KristinBillerbeck.com

Colleen Coble

Colleen Coble writes romantic suspense with a strong atmospheric element. A lovable animal of some kind--usually a dog--always populates her novels. She can be bribed with DeBrand mocha truffles.

www.ColleenCoble.com

Denise Hunter

Denise Hunter writes women's fiction and love stories with a strong emotional element. Her husband says he provides her with all her romantic material, but Denise insists a good imagination helps too.

www.DeniseHunterBooks.com

Diann Hunt

Diann Hunt writes romantic comedy and humorous women's fiction. She has been happily married forever, loves her family, chocolate, her friends, chocolate, her dog, and well, chocolate.

www.DiannHunt.com

Hannah Alexander

Cheryl Hodde writes romantic medical suspense under the pen name of Hannah Alexander, using all the input she can get from her husband, Mel, for the medical expertise. For fun she hikes and reads. Out of guilt, she rescues discarded cats. She and Mel are presently taking orders from four pampered strays.

www.HannahAlexander.com

 
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