Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Mexican Hot Chocolate - Week 10

(with apologies for the lack of photographs; my email program was not cooperating but I'll add them later on)

Falling temperatures, rainy streets reflecting Christmas lights and a completely darkened sky before 6 p.m. create the perfect evening for sweet and spicy Mexican hot chocolate. A roaring fire and smooth jazz are great complements. And, if you're lucky, you'll have leftovers :). 

Mexican Hot Chocolate
Makes 2 servings

The most readily available brand of Mexican chocolate is Ibarra, which comes in a hexagonal package. If you can't find it, substitute bittersweet chocolate with a hefty pinch of cinnamon. (this recipe utilizes bittersweet chocolate; if you use Ibarra, eliminate the cinnamon in the milk).

3 ounces Mexican chocolate
2 1/2 cups milk
2 teaspoons cinnamon 
2 teaspoons vanilla
3 teaspoons mild chile powder

Finely chop the chocolate into grainy flakes - a food processor works great for this. Set a saucepan over medium-high heat and add the milk, cinnamon, vanilla and chile powder. When the milk is warmed through and on the verge of boiling, pour the hot milk over the chocolate.

Place the lid on the food processor and then pulse the mixture, removing the top to release steam if needed. Continue blening until the chocolate is completely melted and the milk is frothy. Pour into mugs and garnish with whipped cream and another dash of cinnamon.

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