With winter nearly upon us and the holidays in full swing, I have been craving all sorts of hot drinks. In years past I’ve gone the easy route and just created pre-packaged drinks with the most effort being that I boil water. But this year I want to allow myself a little decadence. Those little bags of powdered flavorings and sugar just don’t equate being pampered if you ask me.
Aside from the usual tea and coffee, my first seasonal hot drink was real hot chocolate. Since deciding to learn to make it, I’ve discovered that hot chocolate is not the same as hot cocoa. Hot chocolate is made from chocolate bars, and hot cocoa is made from cocoa powder. The former winds up being thicker, richer and higher in calories – which is of course the one I wanted to make. Plus I’ve had so many chocolate bars burning a hole in my cupboards lately, that I knew I needed to get creative and turn them into delicious drinks.
The following is a very easy recipe, but as soon as you have the chocolate on the stove melting, you’ll need to act fast to avoid having your chocolate burn. It’s so thick and rich, too, that I recommend you serve these in espresso cups.
Vegan Hot Chocolate
Makes about 4 espresso-sized servings
Adapted from the Belgian Hot Chocolate Recipe found on www.davidlebovitz.com
- 1 cup vegan milk
- 3 ounces vegan chocolate, finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon vegan sugar, optional if you want your drink to be less sweet
- Tiny pinch of salt
- Ground cinnamon, optional
- Vegan whipped topping or vegan marshmallows, optional
Select your chocolate. I used a 3-ounce bar of Sharffen Berger dark chocolate.
Chop or grate your chocolate. Reserve some for garnish if you like.
Warm about one-third of your vegan milk with the chopped chocolate, vegan sugar, and salt, stirring until the chocolate is melted.
Whisk in the remaining vegan milk, heating until the mixture is warmed through. Continue to whisk until it is completely melted and the remaining vegan milk is well incorporated.
Remove from heat and pour into cups.
Add whatever garnish you like – a dash of cinnamon, a few pieces of the remaining chopped chocolate, vegan whipped topping and/or vegan marshmallows. I added a dash of this lovely Roasted Saigon Cinnamon and some chocolate pieces.
Serve warm. Or turn this into a dessert by letting this sit in the refrigerator for a few hours where it becomes very thick like a pudding and can be eaten with a spoon.
This so hit the spot. It was decadent, it was smooth, it was warm. Now that I know how to make this, next time I might experiment a bit. I’m thinking cinnamon (not just adding a dash, but mixing it in from the get-go), coffee, vanilla, peppermint…so many ways to continue the deliciousness.
What is your favorite way to have or make hot chocolate?