Spicy chocolate to warm the spirits

Lately, the weather in Calgary has been beautiful – there has even been talk of an early spring! – but all that changed when a huge system blew in last night. A day-long blizzard has left everyone huddled up inside, watching the near white-out conditions obliterate our clear lawns and sidewalks. However, there are lots of benefits to be stuck indoors, trying to find ways to stay warm. That’s right … I’m talking about hot chocolate.

I found a recipe for Mexican Hot Chocolate awhile ago, but it hasn’t been the right appropriate conditions yet. So, in face of all that white, I thought I’d try the drink reminiscent of the south.

Hot Chocolate1

Mexican Hot Chocolate:

    • 1/2 cup water
    • 1/3 cup sugar
    • 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa
    • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    • 3 cups 1% low-fat milk
    • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • Chili powder (optional)
    • Ground cinnamon (optional)

Combine first 4 ingredients in a medium saucepan; cook over medium heat 2 minutes or until cocoa dissolves, stirring constantly. Reduce heat, and simmer 4 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in milk; simmer 5 minutes or until thoroughly heated, stirring frequently. Stir in vanilla.

I like to spice things up here with a dash of chili powder. Don’t be off-put by it – it just as a mild bit of heat and complements really nicely with the cinnamon and cocoa. No hot chocolate should go without a little bit of heat. A little more cinnamon sprinkled on top rounds out the flavours and your hot chocolate is ready to serve. Is best enjoyed curled up on the couch with loved ones!

Hot Chocolate2

Word of the day:

Sclerotic: of or relating to the sclera; hardness

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