Monday, 6 February 2012

Celebrate Valentine's Dairy Free!

So Valentine's Day is coming up and I just thought I'd slip this one in, to give us all time to reflect on it (soon find out if my husband is following my posts).

When I was younger, Valentine's Day seemed like a big deal. Not getting a card from anyone was usual - still disappointing, but usual. Funny that these days (old married woman that I am) it doesn't seem like such a big deal. My husband and I had a bit of a discussion and agreed that, for us, remembering our wedding anniversary was much more important. In fact, four years in, even that doesn't get much of a look-in because there's always our baby around!

Valentine's for us, usually means a card, chocolates and cooking for each other, at the very least. If The Hub is lucky, I might make him creme brûlée (his fave pud, but sadly not dairy free) in the heart-shaped ramekins that I bought a few years ago. I'll probably get a card for baby too, just to share the love. She loves ripping cards open and then putting the card back - heaps of fun for her and of course it's completely dairy free!

Of course there are plenty of ways of celebrating Valentine's Day dairy free. However, if you are after anything of the chocolate variety this Valentine's Day, I noticed on my way through Waitrose the other day that they're stocking small packs of chocolate hearts by Divine. They may be suitable for you, if you're OK with labels saying 'May contain milk...' although I've noticed that some of Divine's dark chocolates warn that they're not suitable for milk allergy sufferers.

However, don't despair - if you can't have these, quite a few supermarkets stock small packets of chocolate caramels by Celtic Chocolates that are completely Free From (and can be found in the Free From section). These I've had before and they're quite yummy. 

Other Free From chocolate brands exist, like Moo Free Chocolates. They have been on the Free From shelves in Waitrose, but if they can't be found locally they can be found online. Pricier brands like Green and Blacks and specialty chocolate makers like Willies and Hotel Chocolat are also worth investigating (if you're OK with 'May contain traces of...') as they make chocolate with higher percentages of cocoa solids, which is made without milk. Growing up, and in the early days of being dairy free, I found such chocolate a bit bitter on the palate, but it's amazing how you can adjust when there's chocolate at stake!

I've not seen anything else around, like these chocolate hearts, yet, but I'm keeping my eyes peeled, just in case!!

Since I wrote this post, my knowledge of dairy free chocolate has expanded somewhat. You might like to read the following posts:

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