Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu!
In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful
Can you believe that I never used to like hot chocolate? That is until I made my own. I had tried plenty of ready-made versions but they were just never chocolatey enough for me.
This homemade version is my new favourite winter drink. We start with a simple mix using cocoa powder, cornflour, sugar and dark chocolate. That’s right. The addition of actual pieces of chocolate is what makes all the difference here. The little nuggets melt into the drink making this very decadent indeed.
The drink is perfect on its own but I love to top it with a gingerbread whipped cream. This one-bowl recipe has all the flavours of a gingerbread cookie and is a wonderful contrast to the sweet chocolate.
I know for some people, hot chocolate is all about the marshmallows, but that is not the case with me. Somehow, I’ve never really gotten into the whole marshmallow thing. Maybe I should make my own? Anyway, if you are tired of these super dark, cold days then I highly recommend you make a batch of the mix. Then stir it into some hot milk, switch on the lights and be happy!
A Simple List of Ingredients:
For the Hot Chocolate Mix:
1. Cocoa Powder
4. Dark Chocolate
6. Vanilla Essence
For the Gingerbread Whipped Cream:
1. Double Cream
2. Vanilla Essence
3. Icing Sugar
4. Ground Ginger
5. Ground Allspice
6. Ground Cloves
7. Ground Cinnamon
We start by making our hot chocolate mix. I like to sieve my ingredients to avoid any lumps. Especially the cocoa powder! It’s always the lumpiest! Into a bowl, place 40g Cocoa Powder, sifted. Use the best quality cocoa you can get your hands on – it’ll really make a difference.
To the cocoa, add 100g Sugar. I used caster but any will do. Next, in goes 1 tablespoon Cornflour. This will help to thicken up our hot chocolate. Then, the best bit about this hot chocolate – real chocolate! Take 85g Dark Chocolate and give it a rough chop and add to the bowl. Adding this chocolate makes all the difference to our final drink as these nuggets will melt when heated. You can add any type of chocolate here – maybe a milk chocolate for those of you with a real sweet tooth? Next, add a Pinch of Salt. And, 1/4 teaspoon Vanilla Essence. A good whisk and our hot chocolate mix is ready!
I like to store mine in an airtight container.
Perfect for when the cold weather hits!
Next, let’s make a gingerbread whipped cream which goes so well with this sweet drink. Into a bowl, pour 300ml Double Cream. Drizzle in 1 teaspoon Vanilla Essence. To sweeten things up, in goes 3 tablespoons Icing Sugar. And then, the spices! You can add as much or as little of them as you want.
Into my bowl, went:
1/8 teaspoon Ground Ginger
1/8 teaspoon Ground Allspice
1/8 teaspoon Ground Cloves
1/8 teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
Using an electric whisk, whisk everything together until you have soft peaks.
We’ve made our mix and whipped cream! Let’s make some actual hot chocolate. My preferred ratio is 1 cup Milk with 3 tablespoons of the Hot Chocolate Mix.
On this dark day, I was making 3 cups so used 3 cups (670ml) Milk. Pour the milk into a deep saucepan. Let it heat until the edges begin to bubble. For my 3 cups, I used 9 tablespoons (140g) of the Hot Chocolate Mix. When the milk is hot, add the chocolate and whisk in.
Let it simmer for a few minutes until thick and super chocolatey.Once it’s steaming hot, we can serve!
The hot chocolate is super decadent on its own but we do love our whipped cream. Especially when it’s flavoured with all things gingerbread. Squirty cream from a can would be really good here too! Let’s finish things off with a little Grated Dark Chocolate. So pretty!
And for those of you for whom hot chocolate is just a vehicle for the marshmallows, go for it! I do love a gingernut biscuit or two with this hot chocolate though.