The story of chocolate started over a thousand years ago, when the Aztecs and the Mayans used roasted cacao beans, honey and spices to make a drink they believed could quadruple their energy. In the late 18th century cacao was officially proclaimed a medicine and became exclusively sold in pharmacies.
Rumour has it, that the first pralines were manufactured by a Belgian pharmacist who dipped his drugs in chocolate to make them more appealing. Unfortunately, due to the addition of unnecessarily large amounts of sugar, butter and cream, pralines have gradually evolved from being a ‘healthy’ to a ‘guilty’ pleasure.
The story of Chocolat Essentiel started a few years ago when a prescribed aromatherapy challenged me to make its daily intake more pleasant and less cumbersome. Essential oils, natural medicines without side effects, are usually taken in using honey as a vehicle. To better the taste, I started using monofloral honeys and zests. To ease the intake, I enrobed teaspoons of the mixture with 100% pure cacao.
The resulting delicacies, made out of only these few ingredients, are a vast source of vitamins, minerals, fibre and bioactive compounds.
Each praline is handmade in the family-run atelier, entirely powered by an on-site watermill. The boxes, made from waste cacao shells, are compostable, recyclable or reusable.
Being a chocolate and health enthusiast myself, as well as a bee-keeper and herbalist, I sincerely hope you enjoy the taste and numerous benefits of these uplifting Belgian pralines.
Here's to your chocolate well-being!
Dr. Ir. Katarina Verhaegen
(mobile 0032 474 650001 or firstname.lastname@example.org)