Thursday, June 17, 2010

Bourbon Petit Cake Choco Chip

I think there needs to be a diet blog which comes up with a formula for whether or not a food is worthwhile based on a "pleasure per calorie" index. For instance, something which isn't that good, but costs almost no calories could get a high rating and something which is very good for a lot of calories might get an equally good rating. The idea would be to rate how likely something is to make you fat for the pleasure you extract from eating it. Pickles are a "10" on such a scale, as they are almost zero calories to eat even though they aren't the most incredible thing since the invention of the Cheez-it.

When I consider how I regard various snacks, I factor such thinking into my reviews because, well, I'm female, and I have to worry about calories and such. For things that are chocolate, I use a Hershey's Kiss as the starting point of comparison. It's not fabulous, but it's good, and you can extract a certain amount of pleasure from eating just one or two (if you have the patience to let it melt in your mouth or eat slowly). Since each Kiss is 25 calories, you can gauge the pleasure per calorie ("PPC") pretty easily. If a Kiss is the point of comparison, it'd be a "5" on a 10-point scale. These Bourbon Petit Cakes, which are about the volume of 2 Kisses and also only 25 calories each, are a "10" on the PPC scale.

That is not to say that these are the most spectacular cakes in the known universe, but they are quite good. They smell good and chocolatey and have a nice textural balance between the somewhat moist, dense cake and tiny chocolate chips. Frankly, I was shocked at how good these were because I have come to expect two things from Bourbon cakes and Japanese packaged cakes in particular. First of all, I expected these to be bone dry, but they were like a cake brownie, well, maybe a day-old cake brownie. Second, I expected them to have some sort of strange flavor as a result of preservatives as I've had that experience with Bourbon's cakes before. These simply tasted like nice little semi-bittersweet brownie bites. The depth of flavor was particularly impressive and the sweetness balance was pretty much perfect.

Actual cake is quite a bit smaller than this picture. Let's just say only your Barbie doll (I know you boys out there are playing with them) would be the only one who would find this to be a generous portion, and even then she could eat it all and keep her genderless girlish plastic figure.

I picked this package of 8 little 5.5 gram (.2 oz.) cake wedges up at Lawson's 100 (a convenience store) near my home for 100 yen ($1.08) because I had a cake craving and didn't want to succumb to the allure of the 350-500 calorie carbohydrate bombs of cakes that are so common in the baked goods sections of conbini in Japan. It's not a lot of cake for the price, but a few pieces are enough to satisfy a craving for cake or chocolate. This makes a perfect tiny dessert with a cup of coffee or tea after dinner. Just make sure you savor the chocolate flavor while you have the small morsel in your mouth.

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