Test Kitchen: Hot chocolate warms the soul

Jessica  Rodrigo By Jessica Rodrigo

Dec. 11, 2013 at 6:11 a.m.

Homemade hot chocolate is best served with a dollop of whipped cream.

Homemade hot chocolate is best served with a dollop of whipped cream.

This cold weather warrants some hot chocolate.

Not the kind that needs water added to it but the kind that requires a little bit of time on the stove to let the chocolate chips melt and makes everyone happy.

Also, the nice thing about homemade hot chocolate is the recipe can be adapted to use whichever chocolate and flavors the drinker prefers. The possibilities might include spicy notes from cayenne pepper or floral notes of vanilla.

If you apply the same rule about wine to hot chocolate, using any bar that you like to eat will yield a hot chocolate you'll likely enjoy drinking.

Steeping mint sprigs or dissolving some candy canes can also add a little something extra in the mug of hot chocolate. You can also use a bar of chocolate that has added flavors. A bar with nuts might create a possible choking hazard, but caramel, on the other hand, might add some depth and added sweetness. Just make sure it's dissolved throughout the mixture.

For large batches, be sure to serve it in a slow cooker if a stovetop is out of the question. Keep it on low and stir occasionally.

Also, adding spiced, hand-whipped cream topping is a great way to serve homemade hot chocolate.

How are you keeping warm during these arctic fronts? Send a message to jrodrigo@vicad.com or tweet @EatsEatsEats. I'm always hungry.



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