It’s the Most Wonderful Time of Year

It’s the time of year when you wake up and depending on your part of the country (or world!) everything is covered in a fine layer of powdered sugar.  Here in Texas, this frosting fades with the emerging apricity, but it’s still a little bit magical for a little portion of the morning…

These mornings always make me want to trade my usual cup of joe for hot cocoa!  This morning, I made a delicious hot cocoa from my Joy of Cooking 75th Anniversary Edition Cookbook.  Once you learn the proportions of this recipe, you can do it from rote every single time.  The basic ingredients for each person/serving you’re preparing for are 1tbsp cocoa powder, 1tbsp sugar, 3/4c milk, 1/8tsp vanilla.  It’s that simple!  You’ll notice that 3/4c milk isn’t much.  That’s ok.  I won’t judge if you make 2 “servings” for yourself.  I won’t judge, because that’s exactly what I do!

To assemble, whisk your cocoa and sugar together in a medium or small saucepan.  Drizzle in a couple tablespoons of cold milk and combine to make a loose paste-like consistency.  This will help all of the ingredients to combine more smoothly.  Once you have your paste, stir your chocolate while slowly drizzling in milk.  Turn the heat on your cooktop to medium and heat and stir until your mixture reaches about 140°-150° or until small bubbles begin to form around the edge of the pan.

Once warm, remove from the heat, stir in vanilla, dust with a pinch of nutmeg or cinnamon, and pile on the mini marshmallows!  For an extra decadent treat, swap those mini marshmallows with whipped cream!  The possibilities for mix-ins and flavors really are endless with this basic recipe.

What are some of your favorite mix-ins for hot cocoa?

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