variations on hot chocolate

I think we’re going on strike today. We’ve just finished cleaning the house, the windows are open, there is a chill in the air & to be quite honest, I don’t think I’m going to get out of my PJs. It’s all about your boyfriend’s hoodies & a good pair of thick slipper socks.

We’re not going on strike completely though, just a little. There’s still hot chocolate. It kind of feels like the right day for hot chocolate though. It kind of feels like the right day for a fire-place too. Maybe a few movies.

I want to make two points here before I share the recipe:
1. Mel never does anything the easy way. He bought fifty thousand kinds of chocolate for the recipe, even though the whole world knows that valrhona will be his first choice every time.
2. Even though mel choses the more complicated way, it’s always because he’s trying to make it completely amazing. Sure, hot chocolate can be easy. You can buy a pre-made pack of powder, pour it into hot water & you’re done. Or you can turn it into a science like he does, and gain a result where that every sip is rich, creamy, heavenly bliss. There’s always a choice.

Mel’s desire to be complete & thorough means I’m having four, full, hot cups. There is a chocolate & orange hot chocolate. There is a cinnamon & chocolate version. There’s one with fresh chilis in it & another with five-spice. Then, there is me on the couch, in the previously mentioned hoodie, enjoying every sip. Going to end up putting myself in a hot-chocolate coma.

Ingredients: serves 4
– 700 ml milk
– 100 ml heavy cream
– 60g milk chocolate
– 100g dark chocolate 70%
– 2 tbs cocoa powder
– 2 tbs light brown sugar
– 1 vanilla pod
either 1/2 orange zest
or 1 tsp five spice mix
or 1 cinnamon stick
or 1 tsp chili extract

1. add all the ingredients & make sure to sift in the cocoa otherwise it will remain lumpy (choosing one of the three flavoring suggestions, or one of your own. If you chose the 5 spice powder, that will need to be sifted too) to a pot on low heat. Stir regularly in the beginning until the chocolate has melted, then you can lessen the frequency.
2. keep the pot on low heat for at least 15 minutes to allow for the flavors to really infuse.
3. turn the heat up to medium until nice & hot, stirring occasionally. Remove just before it boils and serve.
4. add a dollop of freshly whipped cream if desired.

…for more recipes from us, check out our archives.


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