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HindustanTimes Mon,22 Sep 2014

A sweet makeover this festival of lights

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  Kolkata, November 13, 2012
First Published: 11:10 IST(13/11/2012) | Last Updated: 11:13 IST(13/11/2012)

Celebrating Diwali symbolises the customary exchange of sweets between friends and relatives, and the guzzling of platefuls of laddoo and barfi. This year, however, many are trading in traditional Indian sweets for chocolate since Diwali no longer connotes Indian sweets.

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Homemaker Deepti Singh is gifting liqueur chocolates to her near and dear ones this Diwali- a far cry from the usual mithai loaded with desi ghee and sugar.

“Everyone likes chocolates. Even older people or those on diet can indulge in chocolates. They have a longer shelf life than Indian sweets,” Singh said.

For those who like standing out from the crowd, The Chocolate Room offers some unique Diwali hampers. Instead of bursting firecrackers and lighting diyas, we can eat them.

“For only Rs. 1,100 you can gift a champagne bottle, assorted chocolates, cookies, brownies and even edible chocolate diya,” a sales-person at the Rawdon Street eatery said.

Shweta Arora is sending brownies and cupcakes as Diwali gifts. She always sends Diwali gifts that would appeal to the children.

Krazy for Chocolates owner, Manju Sethia agrees that besides chocolates, confectioneries such as cookies and brownies are a big hit. This Diwali, the crowd-puller at her Shakespeare Sarani eatery is its caramel and chocolate flavoured ‘millionaire shortbread’.

“My 100-plus staff and I are working together for over 18 hours a day to meet the Diwali orders. The business has tripled since our first Diwali in 2010,” Sethia said.

Devanshi Kothari’s Calling Chocolates sells customised Diwali hampers, such as brownies, cupcakes and interesting diya-shaped or star-shaped chocolates and her own creation, fusion chocolate filled with sweets like sandesh, kaju barfi and shrikhand.

“I started making Diwali hampers two years ago for friends and family. But now I have over a thousand customers, mostly corporate clients,” Kothari said. Clearly, the aroma of ghee and dry fruits has made way for chocolate boxes and buckets.

Popular eateries vouch that more people are going the chocolate way when it comes to Diwali gifts.

Speaking on the trend, a senior from Haldirams said that people are eating and gifting chocolates due to a change in their lifestyle, which has brought about a change in their taste.


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