The February chill has set in and Montréal is covered in snow, the way winter used to be. It’s the perfect time of year for a rich, velvety, decadent hot chocolate to sip covered in cozy blankets while watching movies, playing board games or reading a book.
Despite being a grad student (and all the late nights that entails), I never drink coffee. I love the smell of good coffee, pour some into my chocolate desserts to enhance the flavour, and have been eating coffee yogurt since I’m a kid. But a cup of coffee? Nah, I always go for a hot chocolate instead. Finding the perfect cup of hot cocoa is a challenge though. Few cafés make them as strong (ie chocolaty) as I wish. Making my own seems like the best option for satisfying results.
This is my favourite hot chocolate recipe, courtesy of Ashley Rodriguez of Not Without Salt fame. Her cookbook Date Night In is one of my kitchen staples. So far, all the recipes I’ve tried have turned out excellent. I highly recommend you stop by your indie bookseller or public library to pick up a copy!
Recipe Source: Date Night In by Ashley Rodriguez
1/4 cup (20g) cocoa powder
1/4 cup (25g) confectioners’ sugar
2 cups (470ml) whole milk
5 ounces (140g) bittersweet chocolate (60%), roughly chopped
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
pinch of kosher salt
whipped cream, for serving
- Whisk the cocoa powder and confectioners’ sugar together in a small bowl. Set aside.
- Bring the milk to a simmer over medium-low heat in a medium saucepan.
- Add the chocolate and the cocoa mixture, whisking vigorously until incorporated.
- Bring to a boil and let boil for 30 seconds, whisking throughout.
- Remove the saucepan from the heat.
- Add the vanilla and salt.
- Pour the hot chocolate into the mugs through a fine-mesh sieve to remove lumps.
Top with whipped cream if you wish.
Store any leftovers in the fridge for up to 1 week, covered. Reheat slowly over the stove.