I think it’s safe to say that this week sucked a big ‘ole nut.
(Oh, sorry. I think I’m supposed to say Valentine’s Day is coming, here’s some chocolate, ain’t love grand? per American Food Blog Ordinance 379 Paragraph 3 Sub-paragraph 4A, Section B. Damn regulations.)
We had layoffs at work this week. It was… bad. So bad that I’m struggling with words, my vision, remembering where I am, what day it is, oh is it snowing again?
I feel so lucky when I say that, before this week, I have never had to experience this particular nugget of adult hell. I’ve been laid off before but I was working remote at the time and it happened all over the phone. No coworkers present, no good-byes, just… my shaking hand putting the phone down on my Ikea desk and my eyes resting on the dog I had just adopted weeks earlier, who was fast asleep at my feet. There is no side of this, I realize now, that doesn’t hurt.
In the midst of all that, my closest coworkers seem to be suffering from a deluge of yet more bad news this week in the form of death, loss, tragedy and the kind of everyday inconveniences that don’t fit on the grand scale but Sweet Baby Jesus make getting up in the morning just a little bit harder (I’m sorry, Jessica, that your roof is leaking and your idiot landlord doesn’t seem to care, when we are currently buried under 6 feet of snow).
There has never been a better time, in my opinion, for chocolate.
Tonight I melted a giant bowl of it and went crazy. Juliette Binoche levels of choco-crazy. Nothing is safe from this bowl of meltingly sweet and sticky, glossy, semi-sweet dark chocolate in my hands. I’m going to cover everything I own in the stuff and hand it out tomorrow like medicine, just stuff into people’s hands as I pass by. This weekend, I determined, is about love in all its forms, pure and simple, sugar and sweet. I don’t mind the red roses and the hearts and the paper cupids- bring it on, I say. We need as much of it as we can get, in any schlocky form it currently takes.
Drink up the pleasure of some company this weekend, would you? For all of us?
Caramel Peanut Butter & Pretzel Cups
Inspired by: Take 5 Candy Bars | Print Recipe
7-10 ounces of molding chocolate (we used Chocoley*), milk, dark or semi-sweet
1/2 cup of nut butter of your choice
1/2 cup of dulce de leche (I used Chocoley’s caramel filling in mine)
A handful of mini pretzels
1. Melted your chocolate in a heat-proof bowl that’s perched over a small pot of simmering water. Stir until melted completely. Remove from heat.
2. Line a muffin tin with parchment wrapper.
3. Spoon melted chocolate on the bottom of the cup. Give it a little shake.
4. Add 1 small pretzel, a dollop of nut butter and a swirl of caramel or dulce de leche.
5. Top with melted chocolate to cover.
6. Let cool for a few minutes and then add a sprinkling of sea salt.
*The folks at Chocoley very nicely sent us a package of melting chocolate (dark, milk and semi-sweet dark), caramel filling and peanut butter cream center filling, to experiment with in the kitchen this winter. Check out more of the treats we made here. All opinions are our own.