ok, it's a primative digital sketch using
Art Rage and my finger on my laptop's touchpad
My family always thought i was weird
perhaps dropped on the door step by trolls or something
because as a kid i did not like hot cocoa.
i have always loved chocolate
but not hot cocoa.
after i was grown up and introduced to
what Europeans call "drinking chocolate"
i discovered a hot chocolate i could love
learning that it was the milk part of hot chocolate that i don't like.
Because, you see
to begin with
drinking chocolate is made from chocolate shavings--not cocoa powder
as i learned from an imported tin of drinking chocolate
the instructions suggest mixing with hot water, as an alternative.
Yes! It's like drinking your favorite chocolate bar
and you can make it from any good quality chocolate
or buy one of the premium drinking chocolates
that are now in a few American markets
although i've not found any in our local shops.
i either shave my own from Trader Joe's fabulous Belgian chocolate
or mix the very premiumly priced
William's Sonoma hot chocolate.
Any really good semisweet or bittersweet chocolate
Although i must hasten to add that i do not
make the WS according to their directions
which is with hot milk.
i have adopted a hybrid of sorts
to create a drinking chocolate where it is mostly about
not overwhelmed with milk:
i fill my little mug 2/3 full of hot water
stirr in the chocolate shavings
and then "garnish" with
1-2 tablespoons light cream or 1/2-1/2
Either way = heaven in a cup.
and i love drinking it out of my preheated little bluebird mugs
with their nifty little lids
because i like sipping it
covering it to keep it hot
and sipping a bit more.
i can gobble chocolate candy right up
but i can make this little cup of chocolate
last nearly half and hour
even longer when i'm at the computer.
62% and 70% respectively will make an excellent drink
but it must be shaved into little slivers and bits.
A food processor works best, but so does a good sharp "chef's knife".
i have tried using a grater
but with a small bar of chocolate
it is much too easy to grate one's knuckles.
i spoon 2-3 heaping spoonfuls of either the WS stuff from a tin
or my own shaved TJ Belgian bar
or that fabulous Lindt chocolate orange bar
into a small mug
pour in boiling water from the kettle
stirr with a tiny whisk I keep just for this purpose
(whisking for a good minute or so*)
and then garnish with milk or cream.
Trust me this = Heaven. Pure, sweet,
And, guess what?
not all of the shavings will melt
which means you get to dip out those lovely little
half-melted blobs with your finger
once you sipped the last drops of elixir...
i think i need to go make some more!
As for that fancy stuff Oprah touted:
MarieBelle famous Aztec Hot Chocolate
i have tried it and was hugely disappointed.
i new something wasn't right when i first opened the tin
and saw lumps--not shavings-- coated with something suspiciously white.
still, hoping for the best
i made a cup
but new the instant it hit my tongue
that this was not true drinking chocolate.
Only then did i read the teeny tiny print on the label
(they don't tell you this on their web site where they go on and on about the
fancy "Aztecian" chocolate they use):
this product contains a huge dose of powdered milk
and tell you that
you could make it into a pudding with it??!!
For most of the hot cocoa loving American public
this probably seems like a terrific two-for-one deal:
fancy hot chocolate or fancy chocolate pudding from one tin
and i must admit
it does make a really good pudding
but most certainly not
the heavenly drinking chocolate i crave on a really cold day.