Hot Chocolate Makes Everything Better

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So when  I decided to share with you my version of hot chocolate  I thought I would start with a winter picture.  Something cold to inspire the thought of a nice mug of hot chocolate. Clearly I don't live anywhere cold as this photo is the only one I could find. I believe this is my mother and grandmother.  I must have some photos of winter somewhere, but the beauty of living in Houston all these years is that we don't have much winter.  A hard freeze is news worthy.   Yesterday here in Austin it was 73 degrees and today it is slated to be 75.  Can't beat that for the last two days of November. 

Sadly, I am so used to hot weather that I am chilly at 70, and freezing at 50.  So despite the warm temperatures I drink a fair amount of hot drinks. Hot chocolate is my favorite.  That said, I don't like packaged mixes.  Have you ever read the label? Not much good stuff in it, and lots of unidentifiable ingredients. 

http://redandhoney.com/honey-sweetened-hot-chocolate-concentrate-why-you-probably-dont-want-to-ever-buy-store-bought-mix-again/

http://redandhoney.com/honey-sweetened-hot-chocolate-concentrate-why-you-probably-dont-want-to-ever-buy-store-bought-mix-again/

I had a hard time actually finding the ingredients online.  No wonder Nestle doesn't put this prominently on their website.  I am sure there are some options out there better than this one, but why buy it when you can make it at home so easily?  This is not even a real recipe so I am just going to tell you how I do it.  Fill a mug with milk of your chosing.  You can use all milk or do as I do and fill it half way with milk and half with water.  Put this is a small sauce pan.  Add 1 tsp of vanilla extract (yes I like a lot, you can cut this in half.).  Turn on medium low heat and slowly bring to a nice hot temperature.  While waiting, put a heaping teaspoon of unsweetened cocoa powder in the mug.  I like Hershey's Special Dark. Add sweetener of your choice. I use either a Truvia packet or a few drops of stevia.  I think a couple teaspoons of sugar would be about right.  When hot, pour the milk into the mug and stir it all together. Voila, hot chocolate.  No, this is not the decadent, so thick it almost won't pour, and covered in marshmallows kind of drink. This is something I will drink at night when I haven't had much supper and am a little hungry, or I want something sweet as well as warm.  Try it and let me know what you think! 

Winter in Paris….my favorite bread bakery

Winter in Paris….my favorite bread bakery