Chocolate Certified Wild
This stoneground raw organic dark chocolate, infused with wild herbs, plants & local wildflower honey is produced in the desert by earth lover and talented artisan, Holly Jean. She strikes me as a person who gives as much as she takes from the land. A girl who would harvests but does not forget to say thank you or to come back and plant more seeds. With 2015 just up ahead I look to the future and to people who inspire me and who I wish to emulate. Holly Jean is one of them. She is connected to nature, to her friends, to the land and to the oneness that connects us all. It is this energy that I wish to focus on in the new year. I am ready to go deeper and rededicate myself towards helping people as well as our home heal from any past destruction/trauma and step forward in a strong and sustainable way. May the prophecy, our omen, for this new year be for us to emulate those that inspire us and to let go of those that do not. Happy New Year! See you on the other side.
Q+A on with Holly Jean from Wild Omen
Q: How did you get into making chocolate?
A: In 2012 I was living in Taos and looking for a way to share the medicines I was wildcrafting with people. So, I decided to put it in Chocolate. I started off making crazy blends that hardly anyone wanted to try. Osha chocolate anyone? Chaparral chocolate? Haha. It was always a very interesting process. I then got my first tempering lesson on marble from my dear friend/Cacao Sensei Jeffrey Botticelli, who is a truly masterful Chocolatier. He really turned me onto the magic of cacao, the alchemical process.
(I was making chocolate for years before that though, ya know, being a raw food enthusiast and all ;)
Q: Where is your favorite place to make chocolate?
A: In the high desert or any place that is still wild and free. I like to infuse the chocolate with the energy of the land.
Q: Do you have a ritual when you are making chocolate?
A: Yes! I sing to it, pray to it, talk to it, make an alter for it, bless it, dance with it. I'm not joking when I say I put a lot of love in it. It is a ritual for sure. Every time.
Q: Do you like to do it solo or with somebody else?
A: I've almost always worked alone. Making good tempered chocolate by hand is quite a delicate process, I have to be really on point.
Q: Could you describe your experience with coming up with the final recipe?
A: Wow. Tuned in, consumed by the process, and so happy to make good chocolate. My recipes will probably continue to evolve ever so slightly. I work with wildcrafted & unique medicines that are always changing energetics depending on where they come from, the time of the year & such, so I make chocolate to alchemize this.
Q: Have you had any spiritual experiences with chocolate?
A: Oh yes, several. I have an extremely sensitive constitution, so I'm always very mindful with my Cacao intake. One time thought, this was not the case. I had just begun sharing my chocolate and was selling at a busy market in Taos. I was very nervous, because there were so many people around and I was introducing a new flavor I had never made before. I just kept eating and eating the chocolate, trying to figure out if it was any good. When I finally left the venue, I remember wondering if I had been drugged. I wanted to pull over but finally made it home, and spent the rest of the night laying by the fire, with my best friend holding my hand and assuring me I was alright. I just got blasted way open and was so scared. Cacao is a really powerful medicine. It took me on a really powerful journey that night, and like many powerful plant medicine experiences was a potent mixture of dark and light. Ecstatic terror.
Q: What is your daily mantra?
A: I am the Spirit of Life, I am the Spirit of Love <3
Q: Where do you stand on the sugar topic?
A: The only sugars I generally use are honey, fruit, and occasionally maple syrup. I think its good to take a break from all sugars sometimes though, even fruit. Fruit for example is such a high vibration food, it really likes to dance around the upper chakras, flying above the head like a honey bee and can make a person very airy, spacey. I was once living on a Biodynamic fruit farm in Kauai and decided to fast from all sugar, eating only very simple foods & greens for awhile. That was hard. But I did it and it was the best thing I could have done. Really brought me back into my body, and into a great state of peace & calm.
Q: If you could try chocolate from anywhere in the wold, where would it be?
A: Hmmmm, in some abuelitas earth floor kitchen, in a place where they don't speak English & the elders still know the old ways :)
Q: Do you know any interesting facts or stories about chocolate?
A: Cacao is a bridge and heart opener. It makes your energy body expansive.
Q: When you are not making chocolate what else do you like to do?
A: I love to spend time in nature working with plants and then coming home and enjoying them. I'm also really into reviving Ancestral foods, eating lots of wild stuff. I do yoga. I love Kriya. My favorite chant is Ek Ong Kar. I've been playing music for years. I'm a drummer! Thats a lot of my life: wildcrafting, yoga, music. I love beautiful things and am a triple Pisces so I tend to kind of float around in a nebulous dream too.
Q: Tell us more about your love for wildlife
A: I have to remind myself daily that I've made a choice not to disappear into the bush forever in this lifetime. I love nature so much. I've also been working on saving the Wolves. Having a really conscious relationship with Plants and Animals is really important to me.
Q: If you could a stranger any piece of advice what would it be?
A: Its easy if you take it easy
Q: Where is your sanctuary?
A: Any quiet place where I can be naked in nature breathing clean air and drinking fresh water from a stream.
Q: What is one of your favorite meals that you have eaten recently?
A: Lately my jam is chia fruit pudding for breky. So easy, so good. Chia grows wild in California!
Q: What is your dream trip?
A: I've been dreaming of Indonesia, Colombia, and Senegal. I want to make music in a small village, eat lots of fruit, and bliss out in nature. It would also be nice to hang out with some whales.
Q: What is your next big vision for wild omen chocolate?
A: I'm really curious to see how this chocolate is received by people. I make it as an offering, an opportunity to really tune into Cacao as medicine. You don't need much to experience its deep inner workings. When I add things like Pinon Pine needles and Bee Pollen to the mix it really takes things to the next level. I've been spending a lot of time in California, so I'm creating some new chocolates using Wildcrafted plants from these beautiful lands, its going to be really nice!