It is that time of year again, when Spring has sprung and the weather has just started to improve before the schools break up. Chocolate rabbits, chicks and eggs in every size and colour imaginable have been displayed on store shelves for several months so that it is almost a surprise that Easter has quietly snuck up again. Although lately, eggs and discarded wrappers have begun to make their way home and have been appearing in school bags, blazer pockets, the washing machine…And certain children have dropped some not very subtle hints about chocolate preferences and made the point of mentioning just how tall past chocolate rabbits received in past Easters were.
Of course, children are not alone in their love for chocolate and as a country, we get through more than our fair share. In fact, the UK almost made it to the podium in the 2014 world league table of annual per capita consumption of chocolate, but had to settle for coming 4th place jointly with Ireland. It is thanks to this appetite and passion for chocolate that an average of 7.5kg of chocolate was consumed by each of us last year. This is considerably more chocolate eaten than in the US, where they ate a measly 4.9kg. And if you are in any doubt as to our level of commitment to chocolate, you only have to think back to the great Cadbury Cream Egg scandal, to appreciate it’s importance.
Last January, Cadbury caused outrage when it was reported that they were not only reducing the number of Cream Eggs they packed into each box but that they were no longer using Dairy Milk chocolate to surround the inner gooey fondant. The reduction in the number of eggs and the substitution of the ‘unspecified chocolate mixture’ in place of Dairy Milk was said to be due to the rising price of cocoa which meant that consumers were literally, eating too much of the profits. However, consumers quickly complained that they didn’t like the taste of the new eggs and unsurprisingly, this caused a bit of a stir on social media and a twitter backlash. There was even talk of a boycott by Cream Egg aficionados who had still not forgiven Cadbury from announcing last Autumn that they would be discontinuing the production of chocolate coins.
Luckily for Cadbury, January is a long time ago and we seem to have a short memory when it comes to chocolate because the Cream Eggs continue to fly off the shelves. Or maybe it’s just that we can’t stop eating the stuff…However, if you would like to take a break from all things chocolate and try something Easter (rabbit) themed, here is a good Roast Carrot Dip recipe that is great to dip into or spread on. Even my chocoholics have been devouring it!