Welcome to my blog. I work full time and creating is my sanity. I like to use many different mediums and was a finalist in the Fire Mountain Beading Contest in 2008. I am a passionate blogger, and a promoter of handmade goodness.

I love : my husband, my fur kids, family, music, sunshine, creating, chocolate, handmade soaps, the DUST Team, gardening, friends, Triple J Radio and photography. Comments welcome, I hope you enjoy the adventure with me.

Please respect my copyright and that the original ©photographs and ©text published on this blog remain the property of ©Maddabling (Samara). Please do not reproduce, crop or alter my original photographs.

made with love.........................maddabling xox

proud member of the down under street team

Friday, May 20, 2011

Friday Friends - Dusty Diva's - Cricklewood Chocolate

Happy Friday lovely readers - have you got something fabulous planned for this weekend ? I hope your collective weeks have been full of creativity, love and laughter.

I am extremeley excited to introduce a brand new DUSTy Diva this week, who only opened her ETSY store on the 21st of April this year - the amazing Amy

of Cricklewood Chocolates.

I was terribly thrilled to stumble upon Amy's store when I was compiling a Mother's Day Wednesday Wishlist and thought to myself, I HAVE to try some of these delightful concoctions ! So I placed an order.........

I am about to describe to you the gastronomic journey that my tastebuds undertook when I tried the Milk Chocolate & Cardamom Truffles rolled in Sweet Honey Dukkah.

I opened the parcel that had arrived with great anticipation - yes, I am a self confessed chocoholic. I could smell the most wonderful scent of chocolate and rich spices and couldn't open the sweet handmade paper box quickly enough. I saw in front of me 8 of the most decadent looking truffles I had ever seen. I thought, I can't wait til I get home tonight, I must try one now ! And I did.

I bit into the crisp dukkah shell, the flavour explosion of roasted almonds, sesame seeds, cardamom, turmeric and honey (Amy's very own recipe) hit me.......then my tastebuds were lovingly assaulted with a second wave of flavour.....
a sensationally smooth dense milk chocolate ganache centre ( made from divine premium couverture chocolate) infused with cardamom spice, coated with milk chocolate - it was nothing less than a drool worthy experience. I was so disciplined and only sampled one, the rest made it home but didn't last long once they arrived here. I did share though, I promise !

I was also incredibly lucky to sample a Dark Chocolate Rhubarb Heart and this is without a doubt one of the prettiest chocolates I have ever seen !

This sublime dark chocolate heart with it's sinfully good gooey sweet rhubarb centre, is garnished with white chocolate beading and a candied rhubarb rose - oh my what a decadent combination !

I feel that next on my list to try would be the the Wild Hibiscus Flower White Chocolate Truffles. How can I not covet these, this description by Amy I feel would describe these perfectly :

These beautiful whole hibiscus flowers are filled with a gooey, sweet hibiscus ganache and then dipped in white chocolate. The flowers have a delightfully chewy texture and a sweet, fruity flavour, almost like berries. A decadent and luscious morsel, they are perfect for weddings, dinner parties, gifts, or even just a treat for afternoon tea!

When I read the blurb Amy had compiled for me, I smiled from ear to ear for the duration - I invite you to spoil yourselves lovely readers, sit back and indulge in The Cricklewood Chocolate Chronicle.

The Cricklewood Chocolate Chronicle

“There is no life I know to compare with pure imagination. Living there, you'll be free if you truly wish to be.” - Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory

I'm Amy and I'm currently eating white chocolate for breakfast, whilst sipping a giant mug of peppermint tea. When I'm not eating chocolate, I'm making chocolate or dreaming up wild new flavour ideas to try.

I have been described as crazy, voluptuous, impatient, whimsical, irrational, romantic, delusional, obsessive, silly and wise. I don't know if I am any of those things. But I certainly do feel crazy most of the time. My somewhat gypsy lifestyle means I'm often away from home, but I always want to remember it. Cricklewood Chocolate was named after the street where I grew up.

When I was eight years old I decided I would be a flute player. That dream carried me through a degree at the Elder Conservatorium of Adelaide, graduating with First Class Honours and then took me on to win a Fulbright scholarship to complete my Masters of Music degree in New York City. I lived in New York for two years and it changed me forever. I came to loathe the stuffy arts culture which I found to be so closed-minded, and which seemed to be apathetic to the effect of art in people's lives. REAL people, not academics.

Basically, it seemed like people in the grown up world of “professional” music just didn't care about the real PURPOSE of music: to create pleasure & catharsis, to express humanity. It was just a boring job like any other. My identity was all wrapped up in becoming a perfect, star flautist, so this disappointment in the reality of things made my world come crashing down.

And that's how I became a chocolatier.

Well, first I came home and wallowed for about a year, barely touching my flute. Then I ran away to France to volunteer for a couple of boutique chocolatiers in exchange for food, accommodation and chocolate making lessons.

I loved their carefree way of life. They lived frugally and happily and sourced their couverture (base chocolate) from Ecuadorian cacao farmers they met whilst doing humanitarian work. It was the most incredibly earthy, humble, natural tasting chocolate. I decided when I came home to Australia that I would import it to make my own chocolates.

I love working with fresh, seasonal fruits and vegetables and it makes me happy when people comment that my chocolate is “so refreshing”. I use no preservatives, chemicals, artificial colours or flavours.

And definitely no store-bought chocolate art transfers. Chocolate is an everyday dietary staple for me, so I like to bring out the wholesome nature of it. I was very excited when I discovered the whole hibiscus flowers!

I am completely devoted to handmade, to the point of obsession. My partner, Jeff, is American and his family always laugh at me at Christmas time, trying to open my presents all daintily in order to save the wrapping paper.

But I truly believe that handmade needs to start from the base materials. I always work from the basic product, even when it comes to packaging. I make my own handmade, recycled, food-grade paper for gift boxes. While it is very time consuming, it is equally satisfying and resourceful.

So, there is much more chocolate on the horizon. I am currently producing my Autumn Collection, but brainstorming for winter, which will definitely include an intense chilli chocolate (possibly using whole chillis!).

When I finally get my shipment of couverture from Ecuador (they're quite disorganised), I will be able to release the much anticipated 100% cacao bar with dried figs. It's my favourite thing in the whole wide world.

My confidence and my creativity are slowly rebuilding and I hope also to return to my flute, to combine a life of music and chocolate. And have wild musical chocolate parties! I will be moving to Melbourne in June/July with my partner. It will be lovely to get to know some more Victorians before I go!

Love to all,

And plenty of chocolate,


Want to see more ? Amy has a super special offer on at the moment - a delicious Chocolate Sampler Surprise with FREE SHIPPING until June 1st. A Selection of tasting samples, a bit of everything - Truffles - Chocolate bars - Gourmet Chocolates - check out Amy's Etsy Store for more details


You can also connect with Cricklewood Chocolate on Facebook at this link :



  1. yuum! fantastic article - wow what an amazing life you've had... New York...France ... you may have stolen my dream life and you are now making chocolate ... and I clip tiles for fun ... congratulations :-) and keep it up!

  2. Wow, those chocolates.. *Drool*