Does the cold, gray post holiday weather have you down? Are you dreaming of warmer and sunnier days? I know I am but in the meantime I’m keeping myself warm with this rich and spicy hot chocolate adapted from my all time favorite food podcast, The Splendid Table.
The combination of cinnamon, vanilla and orange zest bring a warming comfort to this drink and the chocolate makes it simply rich and divine. I like to use a combination of Belgian chocolates in my drink. And to make this drink that much more decadent, I’d added a splash of heavy cream to this otherwise dairy free drink. You don’t have to but go ahead and do it. It is sure to cheer you up during this post holiday slump!
BOLOGNESE HOT CHOCOLATE
4 4-inch cinnamon sticks, crushed
2 to 4 8-inch long vanilla beans, split
zest of one small orange
pinch of salt
1 cup sugar
2 quarts (8 cups) water
4 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
1-1/4 pounds bittersweet chocolate, chopped
3 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/4 cup heavy cream
- Combine all ingredients except chocolate, vanilla extract and heavy cream in a 4-quart pot.
- Bring the mixture to a simmer, cover, and cook 5 minutes.
- Turn off the heat, leave the spot covered, and let steep 15 to 20 minutes.
- Strain the mixture into an 8-quart pot.
- Return the pot to the stove setting it over medium heat.
- Add the chocolate to the mixture and stir until the chocolate has completely melted and the mixture is smooth.
- Whisk until just below the boil then stir in the vanilla and the cream.
- Serve immediately.