Sunday, March 25, 2007

Chocolatier Part 2

There's nothing like a warm mug of hot chocolate on the beach. That's what my husband and I drank last week as we sat on a private section of a public beach one late night while my mother-in-law babysat. We savored each drop and each moment alone together sans baby. We both agreed that this recipe is perfect for any cold night (beach or no beach).


(Inspired by a recipe from Cost Plus' HOT CHOCOLATE cookbook, a gift from my sister-in-law)

7 oz. chopped chocolate (I used Nestle's Chocolatier, 53% dark chocolate)
4 cups 2% milk (I used Lactaid)
1 tsp. paprika
1/2 tsp. or to taste, ground toasted Sichuan peppercorns

1. Put milk in a heavy saucepan with paprika and Sichuan peppercorn (I sprinkled the peppercorns so that it covered the top and then stirred it all together). Heat milk until it almost reaches a boil.
2. Turn down heat, add chopped chocolate and stir until smooth. Make sure chocolate is well incorporated. Serve immediately or put in a thermos and take to the beach!*

*I tried the leftover hot chocolate the next day and it didn't taste as good so I think the hot chocolate tastes better the night you make it. We drank ours a few hours after I made it and it was still hot from being in the thermos.

Note: I decided to use the Nestle Chocolatier to see if it could pass the hot chocolate taste test. It worked fine in the bundt cake but I wasn't sure if it was good enough for hot chocolate. I honestly thought it was quite tasty and since 50-some percent chocolate works best for this recipe, I would recommend the chocolate to anyone. Even the occasional chocolate snob. While I will still vary which chocolates I use according to the recipe, I would use this chocolate again.

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