Bouchard Chocolates 72% Cacao Fine Belgian Dark Chocolate

We are unabashed chocolate junkies in this house, and we usually don’t discriminate, but that doesn’t mean we aren’t discerning. There’s some really, really good craft chocolates out there, and some really, really bad stuff you can find at the supermarket checkout lane that shouldn’t (and sometimes even can’t) legally be called chocolate. But, in swoops Bouchard Chocolate to show you what’s good about good chocolate. And, sadly, what’s bad about a company looking to increase their presence in the U.S. but shot itself in the foot.

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To start, it’s a good chocolate, despite arriving during a now-customary California Fall heatwave. We’re talking 100+ temps in late September. I feared the worst, but most of the Napolitains arrived intact. More than a few were melted and toast, but I’ll use those for baking. The bag I received was simple cellophane, understated and all about the product within. It’s a dark chocolate (72% cacao content), but I can’t find a list of ingredients, nor did I get anything listing them, nor does the website list them…you kind of get where I’m going here. So, tastewise it’s pretty good. It’s comparable, favorably, to Green & Blacks, which is a pricey but good chocolate you can find almost anywhere. It’s smooth, not gritty, melts in your mouth without any lingering sugars after, and slightly bitter to the tongue, but in the way a good chocolate should be. The small morsels in the packet I got were good for a light snack when you’re needing that chocolate fix, but don’t want to gorge (yes, it’s happened here. Too often!).

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And that’s it for the good. The bad is that this company is doing a positively lousy job of getting to market. The company name and product has been around in some form or fashion since 1931. It’s roots trace back to the fine chocolatiers  in Ghent, Belgium with an award winning recipe for fine chocolate. But good luck finding a decent web presence, or price point, or e-commerce site for them. I couldn’t, and none was supplied for me to promote with. No ingredient list, no “Where to Buy”, just a lot of pretty pictures and florid prose, but no substance. In this country, we call that “All sizzle and no steak”. It’s a fine product, probably top 5 of all the chocolates I’ve had recently. And while they told me to mention that their product can be found in Costco Warehouses around the country, near weekly visits by Hubby has yet to locate any in the wild. Nothing on Amazon, Costco.com, no way to buy or even price. I can’t even tell you if it’s a value. And that’s a real shame. Since the company was acquired by Halloren Chocolate Group in 2014, they wanted to quickly get the name out there. That’s only a good strategy if you make your product readily available, and as of this writing, they have not. I’d love to recommend the chocolate, because it tastes divine. But I don’t know where to point you other than “Supposedly Costco”, and I can’t tell you how much it costs, what other types of products they have, what they’re made with… Ugh, so frustrating to see a good product doomed by terrible (or non-existent) marketing.

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Connect with Bouchard Chocolate:

I received the above product(s) free of charge from Bouchard Chocolate. I am not obligated to provide a positive or favorable review, just my honest opinion. I received no other compensation in exchange for my review. My review is based on my experience with the product and/or brand, which may differ from yours.

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New Orleans Famous Praline Company: Classic Pralines #Review #PralineInLove

New Orleans Famous Praline - Box of 8 Original Pralinettes

We have always loved anything that is “New Orleans” related from the food to the decor, we have enjoyed it. There is a reason why New Orleans Square at Disneyland was our favorite place to hang out when we had the park’s passports. I make everything at home trying to mimic and bring back that piece of memory from making Beignets, Gumbo, to even Red Beans and Rice with Andouille at home. Most things I can make and hit the mark but the one thing I can’t imitate, is those pralines! You can imagine my excitement when I had the opportunity to review them.

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The New Orleans Famous Praline Company has been sharing their delicious clusters with us since 1996. Calling them a candy is just too simple. Candy to me is a piece of gum drop, to a sour patch straw. It’s just not enough of a justifiable name to what really is a treat all of it’s own. This is a delicacy that you make it right or wrong, no middle ground here. The N.O.F.P Company (as I call them), offers you 3 different types of Pralines to choose from:

  • The Original “Classic” Praline
  • The Creamy Praline and
  • The Chocolate Praline

Three things done right means you can get away with a short selection but do not discount them!

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Verdict:

I received the box and let me tell you when I opened it, it smelled like the store at Disneyland. That store that stocks all the items you can’t find anywhere that originate from New Orleans. My goodness, did I spend my pay check at that store! It was such a joyful scent of sweetness and butter, with a hint of nuts. New Orleans Famous Praline Company packs a gorgeous little box that even serves as a souvenir itself because it’s that adorable. The box’s image is a drawing of a the shoreline. You see the city and the ships, plus the colors give it that vintage feel; very much like the century old recipe the company uses to produce these beauties. The company only uses real quality ingredients that is why these differ from the rest. Each praline is lovingly sealed in it’s own wrapper, so you have guaranteed freshness and let me get started on how they taste. You have the pecans that are chopped into pieces and floating in a buttery and sugary filling that almost resembles the inside of a pecan pie. The confection is crumbly but not dry or hard, it literally melts in your mouth. Not grainy at all but smooth and it has that classical cluster texture where it’s creamy but not gooey. Just perfectly blended and the proper thickness too. Enjoyable to the last bite and I first devoured this praline as is, but then crumbled some on ice cream (Southern Pecan of course) and it just made that bowl of ice cream pure happiness! These are a must and especially from a company that takes care and pride in what they produce. I hope in the future to taste their other creations, the creamy and the chocolate pralines!

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Connect with New Orleans Famous Praline Company at:

 

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I received the above product(s) free of charge from New Orleans Famous Praline Company. I am not obligated to provide a positive or favorable review, just my honest opinion. My review is based on my experience with the product and/or brand, which may differ from yours.

Stewart Pro-Treat Freeze Dried Chicken Liver Treats

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Our little girl gets spoiled. She’s 13 going on 3 and somehow almost always has her proverbial toast land butter-side up. This Christmas has been no different, first with the amazing squeaky toy we got to try, now with these Stewart Pro-Treat Liver treats, and later with a pet bed. Someone made out like a bandit, but of the three, the one thing she loves best are these Stewart Pro-Treat Chicken Liver treats.

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Nowadays it’s hard to find good, decent real food to give our pets. The industry is very loosely regulated and it seems that the vigilance needed to keep poor quality and dangerous food and treats out of the US is sorely lacking. We used to give our dog the chicken jerky treats, and she did love them, but the continuous incidences of pets getting sick and dying from them made us swear off them permanently many, many years ago. We’d taken to giving her mostly homemade treats and dry “liver snap” treats we bought from Trader Joe’s because we just didn’t trust anyone to make a decent product. But Stewart is a different company and their products are in a class by themselves. Their Pro-Treat Chicken Liver treats are just that: 100% raw liver, freeze dried and shelf stable. Think of it as liver concentrate cookies. And our girl, bless her heart, loves them. Small, bite sized (which is good for “gulpers”), and packed with all the vitamins and nutrients that can only come from natural, actual chicken livers. No binders, no fillers, no additives or preservatives. I mean, check out this nutritional analysis:

Guaranteed Analysis:
Minimum Protein 70.45%
Minimum Fat 15.38%
Maximum Fiber .07%
Maximum Moisture 6.5%

 

Yessir, that’s the good stuff. For over 40 years Stewart has been providing the gold standard for “training” treats trusted by professionals far and wide. And the genuinely care about your pet, unlike many of the overseas conglomerates that seem content to import junk and maybe kill your little furry family member.

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I had heard of Stewart Pet Treats before and never had the opportunity to try them until now, and I’m so fortunate I did, because now I have another company I trust with the health of my beloved little dog. A 3 oz. container has about 100 pieces per tub, and will only run you $6.29 on Amazon. That’s a steal in my book, and I know where I’ll be getting our dog’s “nummers” from now on.

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Connect with Stewart Pet:

 

I received the above product(s) free of charge from Stewart Pet Products. I am not obligated to provide a positive or favorable review, just my honest opinion. My review is based on my experience with the product and/or brand, which may differ from yours.

Kozy Shack: Indulgent Recipe Puddings #Review #KozyShack

Who doesn’t love puddings? I happen to be a huge fan and even make pudding based pies, cakes and treats because puddings go beyond the cup!

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BzzAgent sent me two coupons to try the new Kozy Shack Indulgent Recipe Pudding cups that come in three flavors:

  • Dark Chocolate
  • Chocolate Truffle
  • Salted Caramel
  • Vanilla Bean

 

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The new Kozy Shack Indulgent Recipe cups is making an already liked food more likable! Made with real ingredients and the recipe is very simple when it comes to easily grabbing an already made and ready to serve dessert or treat, straight from the fridge. I went out to hunt for Dark Chocolate because being a caramel lover, that flavor was already on my “must-get” list. After visiting a few stores and not finding the dark chocolate, I went with trying the Chocolate Truffle variety instead.

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  • Verdict on Chocolate Truffle:
    My family and I enjoy pudding and maybe because I make the dessert from scratch, we have been spoiled. I was left craving chocolate after trying this version. The chocolate flavor is not intense and the product is smooth, but not velvety in texture. Almost kind of like to much gelatin and/or thickener was added. I turn the package around and not only was a color an indication that there was not enough chocolate, the ingredient list reflected such (i.e. Tapioca starch before chocolate and sugar before chocolate too). I felt it was too sweet to even take a second spoonful, as did my husband, so we passed but felt the product could be saved.

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Ingredients:
Reduced Fat Milk, Sugar, Cream, Modified Tapioca Starch, Cocoa (Processed with Alkali), Contains Less than 2% of Natural Flavors, Salt, Carrageenan, Maltodextrin.

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Retail Price Point: From $2.76 to $3.75 at most stores. Each cup is about 200 calories per serving and each container comes with 4 individual cups.

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  • Verdict on Salted Caramel:
    This is my go to flavor from coffees, treats, baked goods, to just enjoying Fleur de Sel Caramel. We open the cup and take a taste, it’s more butterscotch than caramel and the salted versus sweetness that makes salted caramel be that buttery goodness is not present. This one again is sweeter but think of it like a vanilla butterscotch variety and then your taste buds get the idea. It may be missing the salted caramel notes, but we found it better than a pudding that says chocolate and is then lacking the key component.

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Ingredients:
Reduced Fat Milk, Cream, Brown Sugar, Modified Tapioca Starch, Contains Less than 2% of Caramel Color, Sea Salt, Natural Flavors, Carrageenan, Maltodextrin.

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Final Verdict:

I don’t like to just dispose of food and especially when I see potential.  Each of these cups have about 23 grams of sugar alone and are thick in texture…….so my brain thought why not make a mug cake.  Calories wise a mug cake would be 2 servings to share and the sugar problem would not be an issue. I used 1 teaspoon of Cake flour (I use an unbleached variety) and a pinch of Baking Soda.  Combine product and start by microwaving the cup for 1 minute and then 30 second intervals until the batter begins to bubble and rise.  I kept checking because I did not want it bubbling over and it took three 30 second intervals to achieve the desired texture I wanted, something molten lava cake-ish! 🙂 Allow the cake to completely cool before enjoying and it’s not only because it’s nuclear hot but so the cake can set.  I used a stoneware based mug because it retains heat best and is microwave safe.

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The final product was not as sweet and we could enjoy the pudding cakes!  I feel the product has potential but if I want pudding as-is, I would not be indulging in this variety mainly because of it being too sugary to enjoy.  There are many Belgium chocolate based puddings that are silky and most importantly, so much chocolate that it drowns every loving taste bud! That is what I want in a pudding 🙂

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Connect with Kozy Shack at:

I received the above product(s) free of charge from Kozy Shack and BzzAgent.  I am not obligated to provide a positive or favorable review, just my honest opinion.  My review is based on my experience with the product and/or brand, which may differ from yours.

 

 

Red Vines: Fruit Vines Bites in Cherry #SweetSide #FrostyVoxBox

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As part of my Frosty Vox Box via Influenster, they included the new Fruit Vine’s Bites in cherry flavor. Why fight a licorice straw when you can just munch away one bite at a time? Keeps your hands free while you snack! I’m a huge licorice fan and liked the bite size twist, however I noticed the flavor was lacking. The fruit was not intense in taste and especially from a product called Fruit Vines. Once I turned the package over and read the ingredients, I noticed there is no fruit. Not even a percentage that is low in cherry just none but artificial flavors and the kind of things that I dislike, like artificial colors and sugars galore. I so wanted to love this sweet treat but when I see cherry…….I sort of expect even 1% to be there!

Retail Price Point: $1.28 to $1.79, prices vary by package size

Connect with Fruit Vines Bites at:

I received the above product(s) free of charge from Influenster and Fruit Vines Bites. I am not obligated to provide a positive or favorable review, just my honest opinion. My review is based on my experience with the product and/or brand, which may differ from yours.

Jiva Organics: Organic Mishri/Misri, Rock Sugar #JivaOrganics

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With the Fall weather in full motion and soon Winter will be upon us, I wanted to try different teas this season to try to change things up a bit. I feel new warm drinks doesn’t make every holiday feel the same, so I do try to always incorporate new products into the rotation. I figured if I was trying new warm drinks, I might as well try new sugars!

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I began reading and one of the types of sugars I came across is commonly used in India, is Misri. The sugar crystals resemble the shape of rock sugar/candy. As I read further like with salt, sugar has it’s differences too and it goes beyond the grades of brown and dark sugars. Misri, is not like refined sugars so you do get minerals, which help keep a more natural taste profile to whatever dish you add it to. Since the size of the crystals are larger in size, the dissolving occurs at a slower rate, so you can get that “sugar fix” with very little product. I like making sugar sticks and slowly dissolving them into teas and coffees. You can combine Misri with flavored syrups, extracts, and/or even natural food coloring to enhance your tea drinking experience. I use bamboo sticks and make little lolly pops that are not only beautiful to look at but can be used. Great for holiday gift giving along with baked goods and a bag of coffee or tea assortment. The lolly pops are also great if you have a sore throat and you don’t desire a candy full of unnatural ingredients, so you get many uses out of a simple but better for you product.

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Nutritional Facts: 5 grams is about 12 calories

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I obtained my Misri sugar from Jiva Organics and they are available on Amazon. The product carries the USDA Organic label and comes in a resealable pouch. No artificial colors, preservatives, additives, or flavors. You get clean products that never met a chemical or pesticide.

Retail Price Point: $3.59 for a generous 7 ounce bag

Jiva Organics carries a multitude of products that range from spices like turmeric. Fengugreek seeds, to black seasame seeds. They also carry blends like chili powders and Garam Masala.

Connect with Jiva Organics at:

 

I received the above product(s) free of charge from Jiva Organics.  I am not obligated to provide a positive or favorable review, just my honest opinion.  My review is based on my experience with the product and/or brand, which may differ from yours.

I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

 

Orgullosa Event: Entre Nosotras, Mi Casa es mi Estadio #Fùtbol #Orgullosa

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With the FIFA World Cup matches heating up, this has been a year where record numbers are starting to tune in. I can say that I have had more “soccer” conversations than I usually did in the past. Orgullosa, a Procter & Gamble division was kind enough to treat my guests and myself to some P&G products and a little party to celebrate the event(s). I have found serving a buffet of desserts and making it a “sweet treats” event keeps the guests happy and I have mastered the art of mini pies and desserts. Finger foods and small servings lets everyone make enough room to have a little bit of everything 🙂

Let’s begin……

 

  • Tide & Orgullosa T-Shirts:

Finally, shirts that are cut beautifully to fit a female. Each shirt featured a colorful Futbol embraced with the Orgullosa logo and colors. The slogan read, “Orgullosa De Mis Colores”, meaning Proud of my colors. A Tide logo is located on the bottom left corner and the facebook address and Orgullosa logo on the back. Nice white shirts that are comfortable to lounge in and my guests were excited to receive them. I folded the shirts to resemble a basket and stuffed them with goodies and others I used as a base, and stacked the Procter & Gamble items with a finished bow to hold it all together.

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  • Tide Pods:

The pods are perfect for HE washers and regular models. You simply toss a pod in the drum, add your clothes and the machine and the Tide Pod do the rest. Everyone received the Spring Meadow scent. One pod is enough to do one large load and if it’s an extra large one, simply add two. I love that they dissolve easily in any water temperature and perform well when it comes to removing stains and getting clothes clean. Not hard on fabrics and actually tends to brighten colors. Each pod contains detergent, stain remover and a brightener, so you are covered when it comes to getting clothes cleaned their best with Tide Pods. You can find these pods at your local stores and don’t forget your coupons. A 72 count usually retails for $17.99 and places like Target have the Cart Wheel app, where savings can be greater.

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  • Head & Shoulders 2-in-1 in Green Apple:

Shampoo and Conditioner with a nice fresh green apple scent. This is a anti-dandruff shampoo that has a clean and crisp scent. The product contains Pyrithione Zinc in 1% as the active ingredient. Many anti-dandruff shampoos tend to be drying to hair and even the scalp, making the dandruff problem worsen plus creating others. Head & Shoulders leaves your hair manageable and looking beautiful, plus benefiting from a healthy scalp. This product contains conditioner and for those days that I am short on time or need a quick wash to get the pool’s chlorinated water off, this fits the bill perfectly. A 14.2 ounce bottle is a low price of $5.79.

 

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  • Charmin Basic Huge Rolls:

I have purchased the normal rolls, double to big rolls and when I saw the word HUGE, I just thought the big rolls had changed their name. This roll saves my sanity! Why you ask? I seem to be the only one in the house that has mastered the skill of changing the TP roll. Since I have held such a skill, this means for some reason I go in and the roll is empty but still there, empty but a roll was placed on the counter (like saying “almost got there”) or two square sheets are left and this includes the one that is glued on. The Charmin Basic Huge rolls have 385 sheets, which breaks down to 41.9 square feet of peace. You save with the Basic line and you don’t sacrifice quality. Even though this is a 1-ply tissue roll, the sheets are comfortably soft and still “hold up”. I like saving and that includes my skills as bathroom TP roll installer! You can find this new product at your local store and if you can’t find it, ask for it!

 

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  • Head & Shoulders 2-in-1 Old Spice:

Being that I also have male guests, Orgullosa sort of figured out that not all the guys want to smell like flowers or even a green apple. In comes the Old Spice scent that smells clean but with less of a floral bouquet fragrance. The product still contains the same fighting power of 1% Pyrithione Zinc and conditioner because guys even with short need it. I don’t want to date a Porcupine, so please condition your locks no matter how long or short they are. The “handsome scent” as listed on the bottle does smell nice and not at all like most men products that smell like musk or the woods. This is a welcoming scent that does it’s job but in a more “manly” way 🙂 A bottle retails for $5.79 for the 14.2 ounce size.

 

  • Orgullosa Tumbler:

I have been on a kick to increase my water intake and it has helped to add lime and lemon slices.  My skin has improved and I feel better, so I have continued the habit.  I do not enjoy always refilling a bottle and trying to stuff citrus slices, so these types of tumblers always make things better and easier.  Easy to wash means I keep my water drinking habit and the Orgullosa logo just makes me appreciate it that much more.  Great gift because it will get used on a daily basis.

 

  • Coupon Booklets & Tide Pods Magnets:

Every guest received not only all the items above to try but also a savings book filled with coupons.  There was also other coupons for other P&G products like Covergirl, which were not included.  The Tide Pods magnets gave instructions and tips about the pods.

  • Futbol Feast:

As I mentioned, I find serving an array of desserts and treats as a way to make something for everyone.  I made 4 mini pies that each yield 4 slices.  I went with a star theme as the that is what La Copa (the cup) had.  I went with an apple, blueberry, blackberry and a strawberry rhubarb pies.  I also included 2 other treats, a Lemon Pound cake with a cream cheese swirl laced with Meyer Lemon curd and a Blueberry Buckle.  I wanted my guests to leave with a treat but a not so sweet one, so I made each a small artisan loaf.  My way of thanking them for coming and something they can enjoy at home with their next meal.  Nothing like fresh bread to make a sandwich for two or just enjoy with a little butter.  We plan to see los partidos together that involve the countries we are rooting for.  I wanted Argentine, Brazil or Germany and then I was told I had to pick one.  I’m waiting for more games to finish to see who ends on top when it comes to my favorite.  Orgullosa also supplied us with a field poster and cut-outs.  We had fun….maybe too much fun 🙂

Fresh Baked Bread for guests to take home.

Fresh Baked Bread for guests to take home.

 

Orgullosa Sweety

We got crazy with cut-outs and even the dog was included but she smiled 🙂

 

Visit the above Procter & Gamble products to learn more:

I received the above product(s) free of charge from Orgullosa and P&G.  I am not obligated to provide a positive or favorable review, just my honest opinion.  My review is based on my experience with the product and/or brand, which may differ from yours.

Almondina: Delicious Cookie without the Guilt Review & Giveaway

Last week, I shared the Valentine’s Day Almondina ice cream hearts recipe and today I wanted to not only recap some of the flavors, but also have a giveaway 🙂  Yes, one lucky winner will receive the same assortment I did courtesy of the wonderful people at the Almondina brand.

You can visit here to get the Valentine’s Day Almondina recipe to make a treat that is delicious all-year-round-

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https://samplesandfreebiesgallery.wordpress.com/2014/02/11/almondina-cookies-no-bake-valentines-day-gelato-sorbet-and-ice-cream-heart-treats/

It was difficult to choose a favorite among all because they were all delicious.  This is the type of cookie that when I shop at Trader Joe’s, if they did not have my first selection…..it does not matter. I will pick-up the flavor they have in stock.  Yup, not passing it up!  I love to pair the thin cookie mostly with ice cream because it’s like having a treat after dinner but I don’t pay for it a day later at the scale!  It tastes good, maybe so good that you forget that each sweet cookie is just around 30 to 35 calories.  The selection is bountiful and you can choose from chocolate based cookies to just the Original.  No added fat, salt and a cholesterol free product…..so, your heart will thank you as much as your taste buds.

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AlmonDuo:

I love pistachio nuts, so this one really was the perfect little cookie for me.  Almondinas are thin, but do not mistake that for being dry because they are not.  They are crisp and light and the cookie is just studded with with perfect slivers of almonds and pistachios.  It’s a happy cookie that will make anyone smile!  Dip in chocolate ganache and you may even get the giggles 🙂

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Chocolate Cherry:

This cookie has a rich chocolate base that is deep in flavor.  You have a great combination of plump dried cherries that just complement the cocoa perfectly but also almonds.  I enjoy having this cookie with ice cream because in my eyes it’s almost a sundae with the fudge, nuts and even cherry on top!  Also, you can have your chocolate and enjoy it too with 4 cookies only at 132 calories.

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Cinnaroma:

I love cinnamon but tend to avoid it in products because manufacturers forgot the words, “a touch of Cinnamon”,  Almondina thankfully has not.  You taste the spice but you will find it compliments versus just engulfing your mouth with it.  Your taste buds still enjoy the almonds, and the raisins really make me think of a loaf of cinnamon bread when I have this cookie.  You also pick up the malted barley flour, giving this cookie a distinct flavor.

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GingerSpice:

This is what I call my “breakfast cookie” because I enjoy it with a pear based yogurt I like having in the morning.  The Almondina is like the cereal that never loses it’s crunch in milk but yogurt in it’s place.  I start my morning with this healthy parfait and you get to enjoy the diced Australian ginger they used that really gives it that gingery-snap taste.  Nice to have a cookie like this available year round!

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Almondina cookies come in several varieties and flavors, you are sure to find one (or three) you will love:

  • Original – America’s all natural favorite with almonds and raisins
  • Chocolate Cherry – We combined the world’s finest dark chocolate with plump cherries to produce an irresistible, decadent treat without guilt.
  • Choconut – Rich tasting crunchy chocolate, but low in calories
  • Cinnaroma® – The original biscuit for cinnamon lovers
  • Gingerspice – Trend setting, with chunks of Australian ginger
  • AlmonDuo® – Double-nut wonder with almonds and pistachios
  • AnniversaryT – Award winning delight with a touch of anise
  • BranTreats® – Made with oat bran and the finest cinnamon “Cookies For Breakfast”
  • Sesame – Irresistible, exotic, flavorful
  • Seasonal Pumpkin Spice – A seasonal attraction with a delightful touch of fall spices combined with the highest quality almonds and pepitas (pumpkin seeds)

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Try Almondina’s Newest Products:

  • Chocolate Dipped – the Original® dipped in the finest, pure, rich dark chocolate was previously offered only certain times of the year is now available year round
  • Delights – The Original® Almondina totally encased in Milk chocolate
  • Yogurt Dipped – Brantreats® dipped on one side with a layer of all natural yogurt

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Stop by and thank Almondina for sharing with us their Grandmother Dina’s cookie, a delight since 1929:

**Now for the Giveaway**

Very easy to participate and have a chance at becoming the winner of the same selection of goodies I received from Almondina.  All you have to do is-

  1. Like Almondina on Facebook
  2. Please Follow them on Twitter
  3. Then please leave a comment on this review……that is all 🙂

I will announce the winner on March 3rd!

I received the above product free of charge from Almondina. I am not obligated to provide a positive or favorable review, just my honest opinion. My review is based on my experience with the product and/or brand, which may differ from yours.

Klout: Sheila G’s Brownie Brittle Perk Review with Discount/Promo Code

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I have mentioned before that being a Klout Member has it’s perks and one that I wanted to share, I have reviewed before:

https://samplesandfreebiesgallery.wordpress.com/2013/10/08/swaggable-sheila-gs-the-original-brownie-brittle-company-review/

I received a bag in Chocolate Chip flavor, also a discount code for their store at:

  • Onlinehttp://www.browniebrittle.com
  • Phone– (800) Brownie
  • Facebook– https://www.facebook.com/BrownieBrittle
  • Twitter– https://twitter.com/BrownieBrittle
  • Pinterest– http://www.pinterest.com/browniebrittle/

Get 30% off online code BB2014 and it expires on 12/31/2014

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If you wish to join Klout and get in on the perks, it’s at no cost at: http://www.klout.com

Graze.com: Healthy Snacks delivered to your door

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Here’s something new for snackers. Graze is a “snack subscription” service. I was able to try Graze at zero cost, with no commitment (And you can too!). The program allows you to pretty much “Nay” or “Yay” items, but you can’t select what snacks you want in your box, otherwise “build-your-box”. I like the surprise-me idea and because they sort of catalog your tastes before, I gave it a go!

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I was told my box would arrive the first week of February and it arrived the last week of January, so that was a pleasant surprise. My snack box was shipped via USPS and you get four treats, each individually sealed. Codes are also included to share with friends and work sort of like a referral program. Included is also a Nutrition Facts card, which lets you know the caloric count, sugars, ect.. However if you want a full list of ingredients, it states to check on-line….so very easy with even an exact unique link listed on there that coincides with the item.

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My first item to try was the Herby Bread Basket. My husband and I tried the garlic crostini, a mini basil breadstick, and a oregano rice cracker. I tried the cracker first and the cluster seems to be made from brown rice going by the taste but has a very sugary flavor that tends to not bump nicely with the herb notes. I did not detect oregano and more of what you get when you use parsley flakes, but that can be from flavors combining in the packet. My Husband just stated he really does not like how those taste. The sugary notes were overwhelming and hard to look past them and maybe would fit better with an Asian mix, versus a mix that seems more Italian-like going by the flavors. The garlic crostini is just like a crouton would taste and not overly garlic. Think of the square croutons that are meant to be used for making stuffing but in a pinch you see them used on salads. Now, the mini basil breadsticks were pleasant but salty. I even rinsed my mouth thinking the sugary notes from the rice cracker were influencing my taste buds but unfortunately it was not. 1 out of 3 items in this snack were okay-ish,so I gave this one a “Nay”

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The next day we tried the HoneyComb Flapjack, made of rolled oats and drizzled with chocolate. The item is soft in texture and smells a little like a oatmeal cookie does minus the raisins. Took a bite and the first thing that came to mind, a no-bake cookie. You do not taste the chocolate and I give you that the square does not have a processed flavor at all but it was lacking in flavor period. The square smelled better than it tasted. My Husband bailed on taking a second bite because the grainy texture was just not his thing. I dumped the rest into my yogurt cup and it sort of got lost in there. This is when I noticed the grains I eat from my granola mix had more flavor than the Flapjack. We gave this a “Nay”.

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I wanted to end on a good note so I opened the Trail Mix. My mix had redskin peanuts, roasted hazelnuts, jumbo raisins, and cranberries. It’s so my kind of thing that this mix was created for me. I peel open the container and noticed it does not smell like what I am seeing. Sort of musty. I taste a peanut and my Husband takes a very non-jumbo sized raisin and walks off. My peanut was soft in texture and tasted rancid so I did not finish it. I then hear from the other room in the house, “don’t taste the raisin, I had to spit it out”. Ummmm….okay, so I taste a hazelnut and roasted it is not and suffers from that same softness and weird off taste the peanut does. I gave up and disposed of this mix. The nuts are soft like if they had been in a cooler and then sweated a bit when they were warmed (maybe while in transit). Nonetheless, they were bad! Nay again!

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The Booster Seeds I would love to say are my next choice by I am starting to grow shy here. The Booster mix has sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, and golden flax seeds. I eat flax seeds and pumpkin seeds on a routine basis, so this is again familiar territory. I peel open the container……..these smell and taste fine!!! Yay!! the seeds have crunch and no musty smell. They are plain with no salt and sugar and play well with anything or you can enjoy them as-is. We have a winner and the quality is decent.

So, 4 snack boxes in total and 1 out 4 was a winner. These 4-box units usually cost $6.00, plus that includes shipping. I will say that $6 with shipping would make me buy at least once a month but when only 1 snack item was a hit and it was the plainer of the bunch, that would be one over priced 1.2 ounces sized snack. I really wanted to be a Graze fan because the idea of trying new snacks and with a healthy twist, plus delivered to your door is something I desire……sort of dreamy for me who likes this kind of “stuff”. The freedom to move deliveries around to fit your needs or even budget makes this a friendly company, which is rare today. The site is welcoming and easy to see what they offer. I just would not want to cringe at opening a packet and being welcomed by rancid nuts that made the dried fruit taste like something that you want to only taste once and never repeat. I worry about when Summer hits and if the quality will “boing” all over the place but have to share for my first-time try, Graze left me wanting to graze from my pantry versus from my mailbox. I may try again in the future because I would love to support a company with good intentions that maybe were caught on a bad day!

If you would like to give Graze a try, visit them at:

  • On-line– https://www.graze.com/us/products
  • Facebook– https://www.facebook.com/grazeusa
  • Twitter– https://twitter.com/intent/user?screen_name=grazeusa

I received the above product free of charge from Graze.com. I am not obligated to provide a positive or favorable review, just my honest opinion. My review is based on my experience with the product and/or brand, which may differ from yours.

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