February was a long and dreary month. One day, I decided that the cure would be a nice mug of hot chocolate. So I mixed up my little powder and milk and hot water...and it just did not do the trick. It was simply not chocolatey enough. So I spent my final weekly make of the month trying to figure out the ultimate recipe for hot chocolate. I determined that I could only use ingredients I already had in my kitchen, and I set out for something a little richer.
For my first attempt, I melted a little bit of butter in a saucepan and added a quarter cup of chocolate chips. I melted those down and stirred in a half a cup of milk. I boiled some water separately and added it to my chocolatey goodness and finished it off with a little dash of cinnamon. The result was definitely richer than my package of powder variety. And the cinnamon was a nice touch on the back end of the flavor. But it tasted a good deal like liquid pudding. Which is fine if you like pudding. But it wasn't quite the flavor I had in mind.
So I sought out a little online help and found this recipe. Luckily, I had sweetened condensed milk on hand from sometime when I planned on making key lime tarts and did not follow through. At first, I was slightly grossed out by the idea of drinking condensed milk, but as it turns out, condensed milk is quite tasty.
(Disclaimer: I forgot to take a picture of my hot chocolate for you, so this is the picture taken from the recipe's website. You get the idea.)
This recipe was definitely better than my original attempt. But it still had a slightly puddingy flavor. I think it would probably be better if I used a higher quality cocoa. But my original vision was to melt actual chocolate for my hot chocolate. So I guess I am still on the quest.
If you have a stellar hot chocolate recipe, something smooth and yummy and not pudding-like, please do share! Especially if it includes melted chocolate. The weather is warming up this week, but I don't think there's ever a bad time for hot chocolate!