When myboyswere little,I would marvel at how long ittookmeto pull out their winter coats, hats, matching mittens,and extra socks.Iwould spend more time bundling them upthan they wouldactuallyspendoutside, but, despite theeffort, it is still a great way to kill some time on a cold winter day.
Once the kids came backinside,my favorite way to warm themupwas to give themsome serious homemade hot chocolate.Thisrecipe makesfour big cups of hot chocolate. Feel free to cut the quantities inhalf,ordouble themif you need to serve the neighborhood kids. And you cansubstitute almond milk,soy milk,or even fat–free milk for the whole milk Iuse.
If you make a full recipe, you cankeep it in the fridge– in, for example, an empty milk container –andjustreheat a cup or two when you need that chocolate fix.Stiror shake it up before reheating it asthe chocolate will settle on the bottom of the container.
Best EverHomemade Hot Chocolate
- 1/2 cup of sugar (you can use brown sugar for a more robust flavor)
- 1/3cup of cocoa (you can use less if you’d like,but I like my hot chocolate super chocolaty!)
- 1/4 teaspoon salt (don’t leave the salt out. Itactually bringsout the sweetness in the chocolate)
- 4 cups ofwholemilk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
Addthe sugar, cocoa, salt,and 1/2 cup of milkto a saucepan on the stove. Stiron mediumheat until the sugar is dissolved. Add the remaining milk and stir until it is warm.Add the vanilla once you take the potoff thestove. Do notbring it to a boil as it will be way too hot todrink!
Homemade whipped creamis the only way to go.Put 1 cup of heavy cream intoa small ball jaror empty glass jelly jarandadd 1tablespoon ofconfectioners’sugar.Put the lid on the jarand screw it on tightly.Now have your kids take turns shaking the jar. By the time the hot chocolate is done,you will have homemade whipped cream to go along with it.
I promise, once you try these two recipes, you will never drink hot chocolate from a packet again!
SusanO’Keefe is the baker/owner of BakedBySusan in Croton-on-Hudson. Bakedbysusan.com