Village news from Helen Price – 21st Feb 2019


Village news from Helen Price – 21st Feb 2019

Published 18 February 2019

Wednesday Club

Our speaker in February was Jacqueline Smith from Nova Chocolates, a small specialised company based in Shropshire, who talked to us about what she described as “the best job in the world” – the making and selling of luxury handmade chocolate.
Jacqueline began with a brief history of chocolate beginning with the Mayan people who it is believed created the first chocolate beverage some 2,500 years ago. The Maya harvested the seeds — or beans — from cacao trees, fermented, dried and roasted them, removed their shells and ground them into paste. They then combined this paste with water, cornmeal, chili peppers and other spices to create a nutritious drink.
Chocolate first arrived in Europe in the 1550’s when it was introduced to the Spanish Court. London’s first Chocolate House opened in 1657. Chocolate remained in beverage form until the 1800’s when British confectioners added sugar and cocoa butter to create a malleable paste that could then be packaged as “eating chocolate.” In 1868, the Cadbury company manufactured and sold the first mass produced boxed chocolates, in addition to selling individual bars and chocolate pieces. The processes involved in the manufacture of chocolate have remained essentially unchanged since the Industrial Revolution.
Jacqueline then went on to talk about the potential health benefits of chocolate and small samples of dark, milk and white chocolate were passed around for us to try.
The talk concluded with a demonstration on how to make and decorate a simple chocolate lollipop. Lin, our Chair, having volunteered to “have a go” was meticulous in ensuring that no chocolate went to waste!
There was then an opportunity to purchase from a range of handmade chocolates including boxes, bars and lollipops. Needless to say, many of us took the opportunity!

Our next meeting will be on Wednesday March 6th at 2.30pm in the Village Hall when we will be “Behind Bars” with Stephen Geale.

Kings Bromley W.I.

Well, 7th February was a great night, the ladies of the KBWI gathered for their Christmas meal. Late, but we like to have the event after Christmas as there is so much going on before and just after.

We enjoyed the Royal Oak’s hospitality. Popular with the WI ladies, the food was exceptional. We enjoyed either two or three courses, accompanied by whatever drink took the ladies’ fancy, followed by tea and coffee. The quality of service was excellent as was the entertainment value of ‘John’; he’s worth his weight in gold! All the food was out on time and that takes some doing with 33 ladies all talking at the same time. We had a great raffle; the winners appeared well pleased with their prizes. A great time was had by all.

Any of the ladies of the village who would like to come and join us, we meet the first Thursday of each month. Or why not just come along and visit, as a guest? On the third Thursday afternoon of each month those who wish to, meet informally for a ‘tea and chat’ from 2pm until 4pm at the Royal Oak. Some ladies bring their handicrafts along, but no pressure if you just want some company you can be sure of a warm welcome.