Category: Food

Hot Chocolate – Be Still My Beating Heart!

Hot Chocolate – Be Still My Beating Heart!

Strange as it may seem to all chocolate lovers out there…..not everyone loves chocolate!  Let me reassure you, I’m definitely a chocolate lover.

This post was originally published on 20/3/2011 and updated on 14.08.2023

Here are five fun facts about this beautiful confection.

Chocolate and Mood: Chocolate contains compounds such as phenylethylamine and anandamide, which are associated with feelings of pleasure and happiness. This could partly explain why many people consider chocolate a comfort food.

Health Benefits: Dark chocolate, in moderation, has been associated with potential health benefits due to its antioxidant content. It may have positive effects on heart health and even cognitive function. I’ll take that!

Chocolate Sculptures: Skilled chocolatiers create intricate sculptures entirely from chocolate. These sculptures can range from detailed replicas of famous landmarks to life-sized statues.

Chocolate Spa Treatments: Some luxury spas offer chocolate-themed treatments, such as chocolate body wraps, facials, and even chocolate-infused baths, claiming to rejuvenate the skin and provide relaxation.

But the one I like the most …

is that chocolate syrup was used in that famous shower scene in the epic Alfred Hitchcock movie “Psycho”  and what was it used for?  The blood.



Somehow, that scene is never going to be quite the same – I get the picture of Janet Leigh and Anthony Perkins saying to  Hitchcock, “Can we just try that scene again ….. the prop has been eaten!”


I’ll leave you with this quote from the beautiful Katherine Hepburn “What you see before you, my friend is the result of a lifetime of chocolate.”  – I’m with her!!!







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Trying To Get More People Drinking Milk

Trying To Get More People Drinking Milk

The dairy industry never ceases to amaze me how they come up with ideas to get more people drinking milk

This is one such example

I was in the supermarket yesterday and was checking out the cow milk section, (well I was actually looking to see if they stocked fresh almond milk yet… which, no, they don’t). I thought I’d have a look at all the different cow milk on offer and then I spied this one.

I actually laughed out loud. I think the couple standing next to me thought I was crackers, but I couldn’t help it.
I just find it so amusing that there is cow milk that is designed especially for the lactose intolerant people out there… just in case they are getting their calcium and protein from – I kid you not – PLANTS.

Take a look at the label – it also says “trim” that means they’ve taken most of the fat out as well.

So here’s a bit of info you may not know:
If you eat animal protein the body produces metabolic acidosis and the body uses calcium to fight it off.
For some reason, the less fat there is in milk, the more acidosis is formed and the more calcium is needed usually drawing it from the bones.

Dairy companies are messing around with the milk so much it is not true milk. Here in N.Z. the large companies actually strip the milk down to milk powder and then reconstitute it into the different types. I can’t speak for other countries, but if you know how the milk is produced, please let us know in the comments below.






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Cameras In Slaughterhouses – Well Done France!

Cameras In Slaughterhouses – Well Done France!

I heard today that France has passed a bill that there are to be cameras in all their slaughterhouses.

Which got me remembering all the other things that France has done. So I have made a list (as I do).

  1. They have introduced incentives to embed sustainability into French urban planning.
  2. They are encouraging alternatives to conventional means of transportation such as self-service bike rental stations and car-sharing. They are also encouraging the use and maintenance of hybrid and electric vehicles as well as the necessary infrastructure to power them.
  3. France became the 1st country to totally ban Neonicotinoids – the bee-killing component in pesticides.  This measure goes above and beyond the E.U. ban put in place in 2013. The German company Bayer is not happy and, in fact, has a lawsuit pending against the E.U. Learn more It’s almost like France has put up its middle finger to Bayer.
  4. France is the first country to ban plastic cups and plates and utensils. French law will require all disposable tableware to be made from 50% biologically-sourced materials. read more.  And on the subject of plastic, they have also banned the common plastic bag (that’s the smaller and thinner type used in supermarkets). They will still have plastic bags, but they must be reusable ones which should cut down the numbers.
    You know those little plastic bags you put the veggies/fruit in? They’ve been phased out as of the start of this year (2017).
    The law also currently plans to have domestically compostable bags which should replace plastic fruit and vegetable bags too. Did you know: An average plastic bag takes one second to make, is used for roughly 20 minutes and takes up to 400 years to degrade naturally.
  5. Food – The have become the world’s first country to ban supermarket waste and compel large retailers to donate unsold food. Let’s face it – there are heaps of places that will take donated food, not just the homeless shelters – what about schools, orphanages, old folk homes.
  6. All the new buildings in commercial zones must now comply and have green roofs – that is to say, the rooftops must be partially covered in plants or solar panels by law.
  7. And now – the cameras in slaughterhouses. Although France’s history of animal welfare is lacking compared to other countries, at least this is a real start. It did come about by the release of hidden video footage as well as a fair amount of protesting. Read more
    To top this off a coalition of 26 French animal protection associations have combined to make sure that animal welfare is on the political agenda for the next presidential and legislative elections.

Our animals and our planet need us to get behind countries that are actually doing something. Yes, we need the “something” to be way more than what’s being done, and way faster, but, being the realist I am, I’m grateful for small wins.

Speaking about the environment. The EU, those pesky bureaucrats in Brussels who care for the environment, are putting all countries under pressure to reduce the consumption of plastic bags. Wish the same could be said for here Down Under!!!






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C’mon Now, Save The Bees!

C’mon Now, Save The Bees!

We really do have to save the bees. And I’m over the big corp bullying.

It came to my attention yesterday that the chemical corporation, Bayer (Bayer is the German version of Monsanto, more about this corp below), is suing Europe! The European Commission to be exact.

And this is because…

Back in 2013 scientific studies concluded that the pesticides with Neonicotinoids in them definitely killed bees.  So the E.U. banned three pesticides. Now, Bayer wants to overturn that decision so they can start selling this stuff again.

I do find it rather ironic that this is coming now when Bayer is about to acquire Monsanto, the other big chemical giant. If this happens, then Bayer will have world dominance over seed production.

Stick with me here…

Bayer produces seeds which have Neonicotinoids over them. That means, once they are planted this chemical spreads throughout the plant and kills any insect that happens to come along to have a wee snack …. including bees which are there for the pollen.

big corp bullying

The plants are also unable to re-generate meaning that the farmer must get new seeds each planting time (my understanding is that is under the GMO part of seed raising) – I am actually going somewhere here.

  1. So Bayer takes over Monsanto.
  2. Bayer produces seeds that kill bees.
  3. Bayer produces GMO plants that can’t regenerate.

My little brain equates that to…

Bayer wants total world domination of the food supply.

Do you agree? Would love to see your views in the comments below.

Either way, it would be excellent if you would take a minute to sign the petition just click:


save the bees






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Vegan Vibes Festival In All It’s Glory

Vegan Vibes Festival In All It’s Glory

When a group of compassionate, beautiful, gentle people get together, the Gods smile favourably.

We’ve had the most dreadful weather for days and days – rain, rain and more of that stuff, rain! The organisers of the Vegan Vibes festival held off till the last moment to make the decision whether to go with Plan B = Undercover. Of course, Undercover was not going to suit a lot of the food trucks at all.

But the moment of truth came and the decision was made to stay put… to go ahead with the open venue as it looked like there was to be a small window of respite.

What a grand decision. O.k. so the sun didn’t shine much, but did peep out on the odd occasion. Only once was there a small amount of rain for about 15 minutes mid-afternoon. But the rest of the time… Sweet! The Gods smiled.

I was wearing two hats that day – One for SAFE NZ and the other for The Vegan Society of N.Z. This made for good fun as I was able to go back and forth from one stall to the other.

All the talks were well attended
All the talks were well attended

Then there was the speech to deliver. Yes, I’ve spoken before, but it doesn’t make any difference as each time is different and I still am anxious that I will get a good reception. Luckily I had nothing to worry about, the seats were all taken, there was a mixture of vegans, vegetarians and omnivores and they all seemed to pay attention. Oh, and I did get applause at the end, so must have done something right.

I even managed to sell some of my books (always a bonus) and still can’t get my head around the fact that people wanted me to sign their copy.

Unfortunately, my anxiety was such that I didn’t really feel like eating and there I was surrounded by vegan food. I could have had anything that was edible on that site. I did manage a savoury scone with vegan butter. Funnily enough, I’d been with friends in a cafe the morning before and one had ordered a (not vegan) cheese scone with butter… the smell took me right back to my childhood kitchen and mum serving the very same thing. It was then I realised just how long it had been since I’d had a scone, possibly 30 years. Well, that vegan scone, with “butter” melting was AWESOME!

The guest speaker from the U.S.A. Kristin from Will Travel For Vegan Food was on after me and she had the crowd enthralled. I was lucky enough to talk to her privately – wow, what an adventure she is having. What started off as a couple of years in a small van around the U.S.A. with the intention of trying every vegan restaurant, has turned out to now be going around the world.

I’ll leave you with some more images.  Remember, I’m not the best photographer in the world and it wasn’t as if it was all sunny. By the way, the photos don’t really show it – but there was a brilliant crowd all day.

vegan vibes festival
Not a good example of the crowds!

vegan vibes festival

vegan vibes festival
SAFE Stall
vegan vibes festival
SAFE Stall
vegan vibes festival
Coffee Time
vegan vibes festival
It wasn’t ALL food.
Vegan vibes festival
A better look at the crowd and the SUN!!
vegan vibes festival
Absolutely amazing band

And in case you don’t know – this was held in Mount Maunganui, Tauranga, New Zealand. Speaking to one of the organisers – they were that thrilled with the turnout, it’s going to be an annual event …. Bring it on!!!

p.s. – Sunday and guess what ….. it’s raining!!!!






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About Me

About Me

Thanks for dropping by, my name is Fee O’Shea. I’m a mother and grandma, an author and an Improver. I’ve got a resource website to help peeps go plant-based, I’ve scribbled six books centred around veganism, and have helped others write and publish their own stories.
But this blog is for my thoughts, my rants, raves, reviews and things that have grabbed my attention. From politics to social media to beauty, health and the environment. Fee’s Ramblings Over Coffee is written to bring you a smile or get you thinking. Enjoy.



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