Skip to content

Okotoks obsesses with chocolate bomb

Chocolatier having busy season from the family basement

The holidays are the bomb for one Okotoks entrepreneur.

“We always have a signature item for Christmas and this year it is the hot chocolate snow bomb,” said Joanna Oakden, owner of Obsession Homemade Chocolates in Okotoks. “It is a hot chocolate concoction inside a chocolate sphere.

“Then you put it in a mug and you add hot milk, it melts and makes this beautiful hot chocolate.”

The inside of the bomb isn’t a commercial hot chocolate mix, but is a homemade mixture of cocoa, sugar, salted caramel or peppermint.

Oakden said so far it has been a good holiday season as families are staying home and there seems to be an emphasis on local shopping due to COVID-19.

Oakden, a 2004 graduate of Foothills Composite High School, got her sweet inspiration while attending one of the school’s extensive career and technology courses.

No, it wasn’t chef educator Greg Poile’s class but it was cosmetology with Kendra Wegener.

“We were given a project to design our perfect lives and I wanted to be a vet, but I thought let’s do something different, so I picked chocolatier,” Oakden said with a chuckle. “I fell in love with it and I knew that’s what I was going to do.”

She went to the SAIT bakery and pastry program and then went to the Chocolate Academy Canada in Quebec. Oakden started Obsession full-time in 2013 shortly after the birth of her son, Quinn. 

She brings in the chocolate from Belgium and then from there it is all fresh ingredients being used as she produces her art in the family basement, where she has a commercial kitchen. 

Oakden uses a process called tempering with the chocolate.

“Chocolate is a funny substance. To get that nice clean shine and snap it has to be raised up to 45 degrees and brought back down to 28 degrees and then brought back up to 31,” she said. “Then you can use it to dip or mould and do all that fun stuff.

“But it very temperamental to temperature and moisture.”

It turns out that the dry air in southern Alberta is nearly ideal for chocolate.

“It’s also cold most of the time, which is good for chocolate,” she said.

Obsession chocolates are several cuts above your convenience store $1.75 candy bar.

“Everything is handmade – there’s no conveyor belt or sort of machine-line making your chocolate,” Oakden said. “We use fresh butter, fresh cream, there’s no preservatives or waxes and stuff that you get in from some of those really big commercial products.

“And it’s all made here in in Okotoks.”

Popular at Obsession this Christmas season are the reindeer shaped chocolates, peanut crunch, holiday creme cookies, candy cane bark and others.

Meanwhile, Oakden has learned not to sample her product too often.

“It is different when you are around it all the time,” she said with a laugh. “If you told me when I was seven that I would be surrounded by chocolate all the time, I would have gone crazy.

“But when you are around it all the time, and it is good quality you don’t need as much to satisfy yourself.”

Meanwhile, her seven-year-old son Quinn has won the golden ticket by living at a chocolate factory.

“He loves it,” Oakden said. “His birthday treats are always fun. He gets chocolate Qs and his birthday cakes are fun.

“We will have to maybe put locks on the doors when he’s a teenager and he has friends over.

“But he and my husband are very good – they know if they need something I will help them out.”

Prices for Obsession chocolates can range from $3.50 for a two-piece set to $100 gift packages.

To order chocolates go to their website. Obsession chocolates are also available at Main Street Market and More at 8 McRae Street.

on chocolates are several cuts above your convenience store $1.75 candy bar.

“Everything is handmade – there’s no conveyor belt or sort of machine-line making your chocolate,” Oakden said. “We use fresh butter, fresh cream, there’s no preservatives or waxes and stuff that you get in from some of those really big commercial products.

“And it’s all made here in in Okotoks.”

Popular at Obsession this Christmas season are the reindeer shaped chocolates, peanut crunch, holiday creme cookies, candy cane bark and others.

Meanwhile, Oakden has learned not to sample her product too often.

“It is different when you are around it all the time,” she said with a laugh. “If you told me when I was seven that I would be surrounded by chocolate all the time, I would have gone crazy.

“But when you are around it all the time, and it is good quality you don’t need as much to satisfy yourself.”

Meanwhile, her seven-year-old son Quinn has won the golden ticket by living at a chocolate factory.

“He loves it,” Oakden said. “His birthday treats are always fun. He gets chocolate Qs and his birthday cakes are fun.

“We will have to maybe put locks on the doors when he’s a teenager and he has friends over.

“But he and my husband are very good – they know if they need something I will help them out.”

Prices for Obsession chocolates can range from $3.50 for a two-piece set to $100 gift packages.

To order chocolates go to their website. Obsession chocolates are also available at Main Street Market and More at 8 McRae Street.

Read more from OkotoksToday.ca 


Bruce Campbell

About the Author: Bruce Campbell

Bruce Campbell is the editor for Okotokstoday.ca and the Western Wheel newspaper. He is a graduate of Mount Royal College journalism program, 1991. For story tips contact [email protected]
Read more



Comments