I was blessed with a mother who is a wonderful cook. Seriously, I owe all of my kitchen proficiency, among other things, to her. She crafted and continued many of the 'family' recipes I still use today. So that's why it's so hard when I stumble across a recipe I favor more than my mom's version. I ultimately feel like I'm cheating on my mom by even entertaining the thought of using this recipe, let along actually using it and favoring it more! (Now you're understanding this title aren't you?)
This hot cocoa recipe is exhibit A in the case of me cheating on my mom. My mom's recipe is thick, rich and wonderful, but there's just something about this cocoa mix that looks at my mom's mix and points and laughs hysterically. So all that to say, sorry mom, your recipes will always be first and sorry I cheat on your recipes. Now more about this cocoa mix!
Not only does it have the normal sugar and cocoa in it, but it has chocolate chips. Yes. Chocolate chips people. You're beginning to see my dilemma aren't you? It makes a wonderfully, sinful, comforting cup of hot chocolate on those chilly winter nights. It's really what has kept me going through this last Missouri winter (Snowpocalypse anyone?) and I'm sure what will keep me going through this winter! So now you have a perfect excuse to stay inside and add your winter poundage layer through this next cold spell! Cheers!
Hot Cocoa Mix
2 vanilla beans, scraped and seeds removed
4 cups white sugar
24 oz semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped in food processor (small pieces)
9 oz dark chocolate, coarsely chopped in food processor (small pieces)
2 cups cocoa powder
Combine everything together until it turns the same color. This makes A LOT. It will keep forever in an airtight container - we're still working on our batch from last winter and it tastes just as good.
To make hot cocoa:
Combine 1/3c cocoa mix, 1 cup milk (any fat %) and 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream (trust me, you want the cream!) in a saucepan over medium heat. Whisk vigorously until the cocoa mix is dissolved. Heat milk mix until just before boiling. This should be a few minutes; you want to give the chocolate enough time to melt. Pour into a cup and adorn with marshmallows, cinnamon, whipped cream or any garnish of your liking. Devour and feel the warmth!