December 12th is National Hot Cocoa Day and it could hardly come at a more appropriate time. Since the 19th century, the mixture of chocolate (or cocoa powder), heated milk/water and sugar has been a fixture of the winter holidays. Prior to that, (dating back to the Mayan and Aztec civilizations), the concoction was considered to be primarily medicinal in nature, particularly for stomach problems.
National Hot Cocoa Day
Since we can’t leave well enough alone when it comes to adding alcohol to drinks, here’s some recipe to spike up your cocoa:
Coconut Almond Cocoa (Alcoholic)
recipe adapted from suite101.com
- 2 tbsp. cocoa powder
- 2 tbsp. sugar
- 2 c. milk
- 1 oz. Parrot Bay or Malibu coconut rum
- 1 oz. Amaretto Di Saronno or amaretto liqueur
- Whipped cream (optional)
Glass: Mug or Irish Coffee Glass
Garnish: Shredded coconut or add a candy cane as a stirrer for extra minty flavor.
Mix sugar, milk and cocoa powder in a sauce pan over medium heat. Heat until steaming, not boiling. Add in liqueur and rum. Pour into two mugs.Top with whipped cream, if desired. Drizzle amaretto over whipped cream, if desired. Garnish.
Gran Marnier Hot Chocolate
recipe adapted from about.com
- 1 cup half n’ half
- 2 cups milk
- 1/2 cup orange juice
- 6 oz bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
- 1/3 cup Grand Marnier
Glass: Mug or Irish Coffee glass
Heat half and half, milk, and orange juice until just boiling. In a mixing bowl, add about 2/3 cup of hot milk to the chocolate and whip smooth. Add the rest of the milk and whisk again. Simmer for around 2 minutes to reheat through. Add Grand Marnier and serve.
If that’s not enough, here are a selection of more unusual Cocoa recipes for your Holiday Season:
- Thai Peanut Butter Curry Hot Cocoa from Wasabimon.com
- Godiva Devilishly Hot-Hot Chocolate With Cayenne Whipped Cream from Food.com