The humble hot chocolate – a stalwart of chilly days and cosy evenings and loved by small and big children alike. This traditional winter treat has evolved over recent years, moving away from the spoonful of drinking chocolate stirred into hot water or warm milk. As cafe culture has spread from mainland Europe, it has brought with it a whole host of new and exciting ways to enjoy our favourite hot drinks. Here are our top five ways to perk up the classic hot chocolate.
We are not suggesting a drinkable version of everyone’s favourite chilli con carne; instead, we are suggesting the warming and soothing effects of chilli and cinnamon. Inspired by the fabulous traditional Mexican chilli and chocolate savoury dish, this hot chocolate will warm you to your very bones. When warming the milk, add some cinnamon and a dash of chilli powder. Make the hot chocolate as normal and feel the warmth.
Vegan coconut delight
For the dairy-free, use coconut milk – found in the dairy-free aisle with almond and soya milk – as the base for your hot chocolate. The coconut offers a wonderful rich sweetness when combined with a raw cocoa powder mix. Delicious.
Hot chocolate stick
A Swedish favourite and great for children, these cubes of chocolate are stirred into your mug of warm milk. This is perfect for when sitting in front of a wood burning stove Northern Ireland and the gloomy rain will simply melt away. Are you feeling the Nordic inspiration? Get inspired with stoves from specialists such as http://www.stovebay.com/component/mijoshop/product/292-henley-druid-5kw-multi-fuel-stove.XA6l03T7RPY.#.XC9SNFz7SUm.
For a rich addition, blend an egg yolk into your hot chocolate for a silky, smooth and decadent drink. Be sure to add a small amount of the warm drink to the yolk separately, stir, and then add this to the rest of the drink. In this way, you won’t scramble the yolk.
Mint and chocolate is a classic combination for an after-dinner sweet and works fantastically well in drink form; however, be aware that this one is just for the grown-ups. Add a shot of your favourite mint liqueur to the hot chocolate once it is made and finish with a dash of fresh cream and some after-dinner chocolates grated on top.
Sit back, relax, and enjoy these hot chocolate variations.