Decadent Hot Chocolate – Christine Ashworth
Homemade hot chocolate is by far the best treat you can give yourself and your loved ones. I’m not dissing the powdered stuff. It’ll do in a pinch. But when you want to see how it feels to be Royalty, have your kitchen slave whip you up some of this bundle of delicious goodness, and you’ll feel your holiday stress melt away in a sensuous chocolate haze.
This recipe has a real pedigree, too – the hubs and I stumbled across this lovely chocolatier when we were in France, visiting the Isle de St. Louis in the dead of winter. We shared a cup, and then another, and found they had the recipe hand-printed and up for anyone to copy – so we did.
DECADENT HOT CHOCOLATE:
Ingredients: 1 cup high quality 60% cacao chocolate chips or chunks (I use Ghiradelli – but regular choc chips are fine) 4 cups milk (I use typical 2%), 3 Tlb powdered unsweetened baking cocoa, 3 Tlb white sugar, 1 cup heavy whipping cream.
Put chocolate in a heavy-bottomed pan, and add just enough milk from your 4 cups to float the chips a bit. Heat until chocolate is melted through, stirring the entire time with a heavy duty whisk. Once melted, add the rest of the milk a little at a time, keeping the heat on medium (don’t boil!). Then add the powdered cocoa, one Tlb at a time, whisking it in. Do the same with the white sugar. Once that is incorporated, slowly add the 1 cup heavy whipping cream, stirring the entire time. Continue to stir until the chocolate is hot again. Then drink and be glad you are human!
This goes beyond mere hot chocolate. This will put you into Holiday Nirvana. Turn the Christmas lights on, put the carols on, and put your feet up – it’s time to relax, with Decadent Hot Chocolate by your side!
No, this isn’t calorie-free. But sometimes, during the crazed holiday season, we need to treat ourselves. It is seriously rich – maybe start with a small espresso-sized cup. It also is a fabulous addition to coffee – say, half chocolate and half coffee. And if you want to kick it up a notch – toss in a bit of cayenne pepper (to the cup, not the whole batch), a la Chocolat (the movie) – it’s a bit of an aphrodisiac. (wink!)
Author Links: Author of The Caine Brothers Series – Demon Soul, Blood Dreams, Demon Hunt