INTERVIEW: Smriti Bhatia author of 'The Chocolate Alphabet'
We all go crazy about chocolates whether it is young or the old. The moment we see them we want to grab them and eat them in no time. Today we have with us the most talented Smriti Bhatia who is always around chocolates so much so that she has turned herself into an author sharing her experience and love for chocolates. ‘The Chocolate Alphabet’ is the name of her book.
Smriti, the title of your book is quite alluring. Why did you think of such a title and such a theme?
Well, the idea behind all this was to write something that’s not very common. Typically u would see recipes and history books related to chocolates out on the book shelves. I wanted to have a one stop place for everything on chocolates. Chocolate is my passion and my profession. So by writing this book I moved everything under one umbrella. And related all the alphabets with chocolate to blend the diversity in few pages.
According to the blurb of the book I have an impression that you are stating that chocolate influences our life completely, could you say something about it?
Oh absolutely I believe so, you have heard of the quotation "There is no problem that a chocolate can’t solve, hence its same as band-aid!" Well, I think chocolate is a best friend to you. It uplifts your mood anytime. you can gift and bring a smile, it’s a stress buster. When you will read the book, you will see how it is everywhere in your life. Chocolate aroma in candles for example, Go to salons u will see chocolate facials and all sorts of things in the shelf. If u had a fight with someone, just drop a chocolate in his/her hand and u are sorted. It’s often said that love and chocolate have a connection. The book tells you about all the chemicals common in both which make u feel like this.
A cold evening and hot chocolate in your hands.
Wow! So yes in short it influences many factors of our life
So you are into making chocolates from 2010. And what made you to write this book ‘The Chocolate Alphabet’?
Yes since 2010 correct, I am actually fond of writing. But to be honest, I had never thought I will write a book. It just happened to me when I started making chocolates and got so intrigued and engrossed with it. At my work table one day, I thought of merging both passion of making chocolate and writing to one.
And how does it feel as you have done it so well?
It’s a marvellous feeling no dictionary can explain. I so loved the fact that I was able to achieve something unique. My idea always being of uniqueness with passion and chocolates are everyone's all time favorite. Feel elated and delighted.
Well, what was your basic intention in writing this book about chocolates?
Intention - good question
Spread chocolate love in simple words, to all those chocoholics, avid readers. Just spread the sweetness. In addition, being in this chocolate industry, I wanted to share my thoughts in a summarized form. It’s a huge field, impossible to cover in one book, any foodie, sweet lover, education industry, fun lovers. Anyone can enjoy it. There is a quiz as well in the book to have some fun.
The Chocolate Alphabet is also a book by Harlan Ellison published in 1976, how different do you think is your book? Could you give us the most peculiar thing about your book?
All books are different. I didn’t even exist then. Chocolates have evolved a lot since then. It’s good to revisit capturing the history to what it is now. Chocolate is associated with everything in the world. All your emotions now and at all moments, so it’s a revolution, who knows what it was then! So why not showcase those times and current with future all at one place. I am sure of the book in 1976, being another lovely book! But why mine is different is, because, I live chocolate and hence the book.
Smriti could you tell us something about your business ‘Choco House’?
Sure, Choco House is totally on the belief system of follow your dreams, ideas and let it flow! Then there is no stopping when you live it totally. We innovate flavors and flavors are blended through designs. Designs that reflect into final packaging.
Let me ask you
Smriti: what are your favorite things? Carlos: I love books. Smriti: If you are gifted a platter of book shaped chocolates and pen, how would you feel? Carlos: Amazed and lost for words. Smriti: What if the package is also book designed? Carlos: I would store it, never to be destroyed. Smriti: Exactly! That’s us
Ultimately we want that smile on the face of the person receiving it, with the sweetness within. And why not? Chocolates are being replaced everywhere! Weddings even are moving from traditional sweets.
Is the success of ‘Choco House’ solely because of you or you have someone else who supports you through?
Yes, its God's grace and my family. Nothing more nothing less.
Could you name a few chocolates you have created by yourself "Choco House" or you have spoken about in the book!
Chocolate murmure, Gulukand chocolate are ‘Choco House's’ most favorite innovations and these are a hit with people. We mix these flavors with other flavors to create lethal combos! The book has recipes on rock chocolates which are hand-made.
Which of these is your favourite? And you would advice your customer to eat it?
That’s a tough one!
Sugar free for people who are already too sweet and still have cravings. Otherwise orange, blueberry, simple fruit n nut, cranberry, oreo, gulukand. Oh it’s so hard to name a few, each of them are like my-self nurtured ones!
What are you writing next?
I would be picking a topic from my existing book and will detail that out. Kind of a Part 2 of it.
Any chocolaty advice to your readers or your customers?
Never control chocolate cravings, keep trying flavors, feel the taste with every bite and eat the right type of chocolate.
Chocolates should never be wasted. Share if you want only, eat it literally with your hands and not in its cover, Messy! but the best everlasting feeling.
Thank you so much Smriti, for taking your time and revealing some facts about your book and about your company ‘Choco House’.
Oh the pleasure is all mine. Thank you for taking out your time to know more about my book and our work. Very well put across by you I must say, Loved sharing.
Smriti is an IT professional by career and is also into chocolate making. Her enthusiasm and passion for chocolates with her constant desire to experiment with chocolates is immense. She is a chocolate entrepreneur since 2010 and believes in innovating stuff to make the addiction to chocolates bliss for all chocoholics. She deals into not just chocolates, but also into Mousse, cakes, puddings, desserts and beverages. She creates ideas to blend chocolate with almost anything to name her own created dish! You can find "Choco House" on Facebook @ Choco-House-Zero-Resistance.