What can be better than a cup of hot cocoa on a cold winter’s day?
A mug of hot chocolate—and make that the haute kind.
Not to be confused with cocoa powder mixed with milk, real hot chocolate is made by melting solid bars of chocolate, preferably a dark variety containing a high percentage of cacao, with cream and milk.
To make your own haute chocolate creations, melt white, milk, or dark squares (look for high percentages of cacao in the dark). Add hot water, warm milk or cream, followed by a good sprinkling of your favorite flavorings such as liqueurs, citrus zest, marshmallows, chopped candy,
spices, or extracts.
Take your cue from cuisines around the globe. Many cultures have distinct versions of this haute drink. Europeans favor a thick beverage of melted chocolate, unadorned except for whipped cream or mascarpone cheese. South American hot chocolate, made by combining melted
chocolate and water, is thinner and combined with spicy flavors such as cinnamon and chilies.
Chocolate pairs with practically anything, so make sure to take stock of your pantry as you jazz up your drink.
Hosting a party on a cold night?
Feature a make-your-own-“haute”-chocolate bar. Serve hot chocolate alongside bowls of different toppings. This is an especially perfect treat for a melava malkah (Saturday night meal). Try these three amazing hot chocolate recipes.