by Stephanie Zonis
Good hot chocolate is hard to find, and good hot milk chocolate is even harder to locate. It's difficult to get a real chocolate flavor without getting the end result too sweet, but I think I've done it here. This is a slightly thick, extremely rich drink that should only be made when you are feeling self-indulgent or for special occasions (your birthday, waking up in the morning, getting that new canary, etc.).
You MUST use best-quality milk chocolate for this; chips and regular supermarket chocolate won't give you a really special taste and smoothness. Serve it hot, with a bit of lightly sweetened whipped cream. You can also make this ahead of time and chill it for a day or two until you're ready to serve it. To reheat, turn into a small, heavy-bottomed, non-aluminum saucepan, and place over low heat; stir constantly just until hot (alternatively, heat in a small microwaveable container at 50% (medium) power for short intervals, stirring well after each, just until hot). You'll need a food processor and a fine-mesh strainer.
5 ounces best-quality milk chocolate, very finely chopped
Few grains salt
1/3 cup heavy cream
1 Tbsp. plus 1-1/2 tsp. regular
(non-alkalized) unsweetened cocoa powder
1/3 cup plus 2 Tbsp. whole milk
Lightly sweetened whipped cream
In work bowl of a food processor fitted with steel blade, combine chopped milk chocolate and salt. In small saucepan, heat cream over low heat until very hot, stirring occasionally. All at once, pour over chocolate. Add cocoa powder. Allow to stand for about a minute, then cover and process at high speed just until mixture is smooth. Scrape down sides of work bowl; process again for about 10 seconds, until completely blended. Chocolate mixture will be thick; scrape into 1 quart, heavy-bottomed, non-aluminum saucepan.
In separate small saucepan, heat milk over low heat until very hot, stirring occasionally. Off heat, add hot milk gradually to chocolate mixture, stirring in gently with a small whisk. Scrape bottom and sides of pot frequently with rubber spatula. When all milk has been added, place pot over low heat.
Stir milk chocolate mixture constantly with whisk. It is not necessary to beat it vigorously with the whisk, but do keep stirring; scrape pot bottom and sides with rubber spatula once or twice. Allow mixture to come to a low boil. Boil, stirring constantly, for 1 minute, turning down heat if mixture threatens to boil over. Scrape pot bottom and sides with rubber spatula frequently while mixture boils.
Remove from heat. Immediately strain through fine strainer into heatproof pitcher or liquid measure of at least 2-cup capacity. (There will be a thick mixture on the bottom of the pot. If you stirred as directed, it will not be burnt, so you can put that through the strainer, too.) Quickly divide between two small mugs or cups. Garnish with a puff of lightly sweetened whipped cream and serve immediately. (To store for future consumption, pour into one larger container and do not garnish. Cool briefly at room temperature, then chill, covering tightly when cold. Reheat as described above, then divide, garnish, and serve).
Copyright © 2001 Francesca Chocolate Productions. All Rights Reserved.
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This page created January 2001
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