Cristian Marino

Executive Italian Chef | Culinary Consultant

Celebrating International Chocolate Day in the Heart of the Maldives 

ByCristian Marino

Sep 15, 2023
International chocolate day September

Few settings are as idyllic as the Maldives to celebrate any occasion. The turquoise waters, golden white sands, and lush palm trees create a picturesque canvas apt for any celebration. A few days ago ( 13 September 2023), we marked a day close to every gourmand’s heart here at the resort – International Chocolate Day.

Chocolate, often dubbed the ‘food of the gods,’ has an age-old history, transcending cultures and epochs. Its rich taste and velvety texture transport one to a world of sheer indulgence. However, beyond its sumptuous taste lies health benefits – but moderation is key, like with all things in life.

The Health Benefits of Chocolate – When Moderation is the Mantra

While the idea of consuming chocolate and reaping health benefits might seem like an oxymoron, it’s the cacao in chocolate that offers numerous health-boosting properties:

  1. Rich in Antioxidants: Dark chocolate is packed with antioxidants, including flavonoids, polyphenols, and catechins, which play a crucial role in neutralizing free radicals in the body.
  2. Heart Health: Regular moderate consumption of dark chocolate has been linked to improved blood flow and a reduced risk of heart disease. Flavonoids in chocolate help relax blood vessels, aiding in lower blood pressure.
  3. Mood Enhancer: Apart from the sheer joy of tasting it, chocolate contains serotonin precursors, potentially uplifting mood and combating depression.
  4. Improved Brain Function: Some studies have shown that the compounds in dark chocolate can improve cognitive function and even prevent age-related mental decline.

However, a word of caution: all these benefits primarily pertain to dark chocolate with a high cocoa content, not the sugary milk chocolates we often find in the market. Additionally, moderation is paramount. 

Eating dark chocolate with high cocoa content in moderation can deliver antioxidants and minerals and may help protect you from heart disease. But it may also contain high amounts of sugar and calories.Overindulgence can negate these benefits due to the added sugars and calories.


A Maldivian Chocolate Soiree

Our celebration here at the resort was not just about indulging in chocolate but celebrating its rich history, versatility in culinary arts, and subtle health benefits. As guests dipped their toes in the sand and gazed at the stunning Maldivian sunset, they savored carefully crafted chocolate desserts.

Being an Italian chef, I’m no stranger to the magic of chocolate. Italy has its love affair with this ingredient, from Turin’s rich ‘chocolate’ to the southern ‘modica’ chocolate, which bears a grainy texture and an ancient recipe.

Drawing inspiration from my Italian roots and the freshness of Maldivian ingredients and most notably with the fantastic pastry team here, we curated a menu that was a treat for the palate and the soul. It’s a testament to the universal appeal of chocolate – a bridge between cultures and an ode to the senses.

International chocolate day September
International chocolate day September, (don’t forget to have fun)

In conclusion, as we bid farewell to yet another International Chocolate Day, let’s remember that chocolate, when consumed in moderation, can be more than just an indulgence. It can be a delicious slice of health. Here’s to many more chocolaty celebrations in the heart of paradise!

Buon appetito!

-Cristian Marino

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