Day 2: Mexican Hot Chocolate or Mocha
Awhile back, when I used to work at Williams Sonoma, one of the items that sold like crazy around this time of year was cans of hot chocolate mix. Their mix was pretty good, better than your average hot cocoa mix, but they never had the flavor I was truly craving. When the husband and I lived in California during his graduate school days, there was a cafe we used to go to that had an amazing drink. It was called a Mexican Mocha and I absolutely loved it. It was not too sweet and a little spicy from cinnamon and chili. Yes chili. The chili was especially nice going down the back of your throat on cool nights. I do not miss those grad school days, but I do miss that drink. I have not been able to find it anywhere else. Until now.
I have made hot chocolate mixes in the past, but for some reason had not attempted this flavor until now. It turned out to be way easier than I expected and made me wonder why I have waited so long to try making it. All you need is some really good chocolate. In this case, I used Lindt 54% dark. On my first try, I used just an ounce of chocolate to six ounces of milk, but that turned out to not be enough. In the end, I ended up adding more chocolate as well as Dutch processed cocoa powder. Then, I added in cinnamon and chili powder until I was happy with the flavor.
The great thing about this mix is that it has no added dairy, which is great for those of us who can’t have dairy. I made my cup with an almond coconut milk that I have been liking lately. It was really quite yummy. For the boys, I made theirs with regular whole milk and they really enjoyed it like that. The best part of not having to share my drink with the boys was that I could add coffee to it to make it into the Mexican Mocha drink of my memory.
A teaspoon of instant espresso powder per cup is all it takes. Now, if you make a batch of the mix and decide to add the coffee, just be sure to label it! You wouldn’t want to serve coffee to the kiddos unknowingly, right?
Don’t forget to leave a comment to be entered into the drawing for the prize box. See yesterday’s post if you have no idea what I am talking about. There will definitely be some hot chocolate in that box. So leave me a comment! I’d love to hear about your favorite holiday drink. (Nobody likes eggnog anymore do they?)
Mexican Hot Chocolate or Mocha
yields about 2 cups of mix
You will need:
12 ounces of good quality dark chocolate, such as Lindt 54%
1/4 cup dutch processed cocoa powder
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon chili powder
8 teaspoons instant espresso powder (optional)
Process all ingredients in a food processor until mostly ground up, with pieces of chocolate no bigger than a pea. Transfer to a glass jar or portion into little baggies for individual servings. One serving needs about 1.5 ounces or three level tablespoons.
To make a serving of hot chocolate: Heat up 6 ounces of milk per serving, either in the microwave or in a small pot on the stove. Take care that the milk does not boil over. Whisk in 3 level tablespoons of mix per serving until all the chocolate has melted. Serve and enjoy. Marshmallows are optional. Surprisingly, the boys did not think the marshmallows added to the experience at all and I would agree. This hot chocolate stands on its own and needs nothing else to go with it except maybe a fire and some good music.