Friday, July 24, 2009

Serious Scientific Research

.... and with apologies to my friends in the Northern hemisphere who are sweltering through Summer! But it's freezing cold Down Under & I'm going into my 'Laboratory' this weekend to try & discover the Ultimate Hot Chocolate recipe to enjoy by the fire. Happy weekend to you all.

Max's Perfect Hot Chocolate (Serves 4)
Vanilla Cream:
2 tablespoons cornflour
2 1/2 cups full cream milk
1/2 cup sugar
2 large egg yolks
1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
1. Put cornflour in a bowl & add only 1/2 cup of the milk.
2. Stir well to dissolve the cornflour.
3. Add sugar & egg yolks & whisk well. Set aside.
4. In a saucepan, heat the remaining 2 cups of milk & vanilla bean.
5. Bring mixture just to simmer.
6. Remove vanilla bean to scrape the seeds into the milk & discard the pod.
7. Gradually whisk the egg yolk mixture into the milk over gentle heat until it almost comes to the boil.
8. You can also add your favourite spice (e.g. cinnamon or nutmeg) to flavour the vanilla cream.
9. Strain vanilla cream through a sieve, set aside & allow to cool, then refrigerate.

Then to Make the Perfect Hot Chocolate......
2 cups full cream milk
2 cups of the cool vanilla cream
300g high quality dark chocolate chunks (Valrhona or similar)
1. Over gentle heat, mix vanilla cream & milk with a hand whisk until the mixture almost comes to the boil.
2. Stir in dark chocolate until melted.
3. Pour into mug & enjoy!

Totally Addicted's Hot Chocolate (Serves 1)

1. Line your hot chocolate glass with sweet chocolate topping leaving about an inch on the bottom.

2. Cover with frothy hot milk. When the milk is poured over the chocolate topping, you get three layers, dark on the bottom, slightly chocolatey in the middle and frothy milk on top.

3. Warm up another cup of frothy milk to serve on the side to adjust the chocolate to your liking.

4. Add some Valrhona chocolate shavings to your hot chocolate & stir well.

Gourmet Traveller's Heart-Stopping Hot Chocolate with Chocolate Marshmallows (Serves 6)
First make the Chocolate Marshmallows


20 gms. powered gelatine
330 gm (2 cups) white sugar
100 ml (2/3 cup) light corn syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
50 gm. Dutch-process cocoa (preferably Droste)
120 gm (¾ cup) pure icing sugar
70 gm (¼ cup) cornflour


1. Place gelatine in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, add 1/3 cup cold water and stand for 10 minutes.

2. Combine sugar, corn syrup and 1/3 cup water in a saucepan and stir over medium-high heat until sugar dissolves, bring to the boil and cook without stirring until mixture reaches 121C. on a sugar thermometer.

3. With the mixer on low speed, add syrup in a thin steady stream and whisk until combined. Scrape down sides of bowl, add vanilla, increase speed to high and whisk for 8-10 minutes or until thick, white and fluffy.

4. Sieve over 20gm cocoa, whisk and transfer mixture to a baking paper-lined, lightly oiled 17cm-square cake pan, smoothing top and stand overnight.

5. Turn onto a lightly oiled cutting board and cut into squares. Sieve together icing sugar, cornflour and remaining cocoa, then roll marshmallows in cocoa mixture to coat.

6. Marshmallows will keep for up to a week in an airtight container.

To assemble the Hot Chocolate
1. Combine 320 mls. of full cream milk and 320 mls. pouring cream in a heavy-based saucepan and 300 gms. dark chocolate (64% cocoa solids e.g. Valrhona) finely chopped
and bring to a simmer over low heat.

2. Stir continuously until melted and smooth. Divide among heatproof cups, add a dash of chocolate liqueur to taste, scatter with marshmallows and dust with cocoa.

Jeffrey Steingarten's Hot Chocolate via Crispy Waffle's Adaptation (Serves 4)

1-1/2 cup whole milk
1/4 cup water
3 tablespoons sugar
80g of your favorite bittersweet chocolate, cut into chunks
3 tablespoons Dutch cocoa powder (Droste is my favorite)
a generous pinch of salt

1. In a saucepan, stir together the milk, water and sugar. Bring to a boil over medium heat.
2. Add the chocolate and cocoa, bring to a boil again, whisking until the chocolate and cocoa are dissolved and the mixture is thickened.
3. Serve in little cups - a little goes a long way with this hot chocolate!

Jamie Oliver's The Best Hot Chocolate Drink (Serves 2)

This takes around 3 or 4 minutes to make.

1. First put the milk into a pan.
2. Bring to a simmer – not a boil – and while it's heating, put a tablespoon of choccie powder and sugar to taste into each mug.
3. Add a little warmish milk from the pan to each mug – you just need enough to dissolve the chocolate powder.
4. At this point, plonk a few marshmallows into each mug.
5. When the milk is at a simmer, carefully pour it into a plastic jug or flask.
6. I normally do this over a sink as I always end up spilling a bit (the trick is to have a big enough jug or flask so the milk only half fills it – you need the extra space for shaking and frothing).
7. Screw the lid on tightly, place a cloth over the lid for safety, and shake hard for a minute. Remove the lid, minding the steam, and pour the milk into your mugs.
8. A little stir and you can slurp your way to heaven!

Martha's Hot Chocolate (Serves 8)
400 bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped
600 mls. full cream milk
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1. Combine chocolate and milk in a large saucepan over medium heat.

2. Whisk until chocolate is melted and milk is very hot and frothy, about 20 minutes.

3. Remove from heat. Add vanilla; pour into a blender, filling halfway.

4. Blend, holding lid in place (the hot liquid will expand), until frothy.

Spicy Spanish Hot Chocolate (Serves 4)

This combination of hot chocolate and espresso is enjoyed in Spain and throughout Europe.
2/3 cup boiling water
150 gms. good-quality dark or bittersweet (60 to 70 percent cocoa) chocolate, finely chopped 1 1/3 cups low-fat milk
1 cup brewed espresso or strong coffee
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 2-inch piece orange rind strip
1/4 cup frozen fat-free whipped topping, thawed
Cocoa powder (optional)
1. Combine 2/3 cup boiling water and chopped chocolate in a medium saucepan, stirring until chocolate melts.

2. Add milk and next 4 ingredients (through rind); cook over medium-low heat, stirring with a whisk. Heat 5 minutes or until tiny bubbles form around edge of pan, stirring frequently (do not boil). Discard rind.

3. Pour 1 cup mixture into each of 4 mugs. Spoon 1 tablespoon whipped topping over each serving. Dust with cocoa powder, if desired.

Recchuiti's Decadent Hot Chocolate (Serves 2)


150 gms. dark chocolate pieces, coarsely chopped
100 mls. filtered water, boiling
Flavorings (choose one only)
½ teaspoon ground cardamom
or ½ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
or 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
or 1 teaspoon pasilla chile powder
Spirits (choose one only)
1 ½ nips single-malt Scotch Whiskey

or 1 ½ nips apple brandy
Garnishes (choose one only)
loosely whipped cream
or crème fraîche flavored with vanilla bean
or cinnamon sticks
or vanilla marshmallows

1. In a small saucepan, pour the boiling water over the chocolate pieces. Add any
flavorings or spirits to the mixture now. 
2. Using an immersion blender, mix until the chocolate pieces have completely melted
and a foamy froth has developed. You may also use a whisk, but the hot chocolate will
not be as frothy.
3. Pour into serving cups, garnish and serve immediately.

White Hot Chocolate (Serves 4)

3 cups light cream
3/4 cup white chocolate, chopped
1 stick cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
Ground cinnamon for dusting (optional)
1. Combine 1/4 cup of the cream, white chocolate,cinnamon stick and nutmeg in a medium saucepan, whisk over low heat until chocolate is melted. Remove stick cinnamon.
2. Add remaining cream. Whisk until heated through. Remove from heat. Stir in vanilla and almond extracts. Serve warm in cups or mugs. Sprinkle with cinnamon, if desired.

*Tip: To create the foamy layer on top, blend some of the hot chocolate mixture in a blender container until frothy, and add to each serving.

Hot Chocolate Cake in a Cup

250 gms. unsalted butter, plus extra for coating
3 tablespoons plain flour, plus extra for dusting
1/2 cup sugar, plus extra for dusting
150 gms. semi-sweet dark chocolate, coarsely chopped
4 large eggs
1 large egg yolk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup mini marshmallows
2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder


1. Preheat oven to 375° F. Generously butter, flour, and sugar eight coffee cups or mugs made of ovenproof stoneware. Wipe the rims clean.
2. Place the 8 tablespoons of butter and the chocolate in a medium heatproof bowl over a pan of simmering water and melt, stirring once or twice until smooth. Remove from heat and let cool 5 minutes.
3. Using a handheld mixer, beat the eggs, yolk, vanilla, salt, and 1/2 cup sugar at the highest speed until the volume doubles and the mixture becomes foamy, about 5 minutes. Stir the 3 tablespoons of flour into the chocolate, then gradually add it to the egg mixture, beating on low until it's fully incorporated.
4. Ladle the batter into each cup until it's about 1/2 inch from the rim. Bake until the cakes puff and begin to crack but the centers are still a bit runny, 13 to 17 minutes. Remove from oven. Sprinkle with marshmallows, then return to oven for 2 to 4 minutes, until the marshmallow tops begin to crisp. Remove from oven; let cool about 5 minutes. Sift the cocoa on top.

Image 1: Max Brenner Image 2: Totally Addicted To Taste Image 3: Gourmet Traveller Image 4: Crispy Waffle Image 5: Jamie Oliver Image 6: Martha Stewart Image 7: My Recipes Image 8: Recchuiti Image 9: Better Home & Garden Image 10: Real Simple


  1. I want the heart stopping one......Oh, who am I kidding...I want them all..I'm printing them all off so, that I can make them..they sound divine.....,and I love the the way I gave you a little mention today in my post....Have a great weekend Millie XXXX

  2. Millie~ It is warm and humid here right now- but these look soooo good! I will save these recipes- I'm sure I'll be wanting to warm up by the fire soon enough. Have a great weekend.

  3. Quite possibly the most dangerous post I have seen in a long time! Millie I think I gained 3 kilos just reading it!
    Have a snug weekend!
    Romana :)

  4. Yummy! I will have to save these for a few months from now!

  5. You are in the mood for chocolate MIllie...xv

  6. Oh, oh OH! Millie - you have killed me - death by chocolate and with just photos! I'm going to have to try them ALL now.. and I want those silver cups! ... and the cake in a cup.. and and and...I'm so making one of these tonight - and tomorrow night - and..
    xoxox Isa
    Stop by my place and throw your name in the hat, Millie!

  7. Hi Millie,

    They all look so scrumptious.
    It looks like we are going to be in for a wet weekend so an ideal little treat.
    Thanks for sharing the recipes.

    Have a happy weekend

  8. oh man. I'm off to Mintaro again this weekend and I reckon the temps will be below zero. These receipes will be perfect, and there is enough of them to ensure I'll be sipping on one 24/7. Then I'll have to run from Mintaro back to Adelaide to work off just half of them! Nice work Millie - enjoy! Freezing in Bridgewater this morning, I find it hard enough to get up in the morning let alone it being that much colder - how do you do it? I've clearly softened from when I grew up in Burra - we used to leave out ice cream containers of water to ice up, so much fun! Stay warm xx

  9. Dear Millie, this is torture. I am housebound on crutches & now I'm definitely going to have to send my hubby out to get the ingredients for Max Brenner's hot chocolate so we can divulge this weekend. They all look super yummy! Lee :)

  10. Ohhhh, they all sound so good, but I think I'd have to opt for the choclate cake in a cup!

  11. Geez you deserve a freakin medal just for writing this post up. 10 out of 10 Millie.


  12. Goodness me, Millie, do you want me to double in size over just one weekend? You know pregnancy does terrible things to one's willpower! Now, which one to stat with....
    Clare x

  13. Just so yummy - how am I going to fit all of them into one weekend!! Hope you find your favourite!!

  14. Loving the chocolate feast here!

  15. I didn't realise there were so many Varieties...will have to give some a go...
    Have a good weekend

  16. Mmmmm - These look delish even if it is sultry here on the Gulf of Mexico.

  17. You're killing me here! I'm off to the chilly Blue Mountains this weekend and was planning on packing a very humble instant "99% Fat Free Hot Chocolate". Now I have hot chocolate lust and will not be satisfied unless I try at least one of these recipes. Hope you and MOTH have a fab weekend. Meredy xo.

  18. Millie,
    Last year Hannah and I learned to make marshmallows. They won a blue ribbon at the Iowa State Fair. We will try the chocolate ones come fall. I made the marshmallows as gifts and for a couple of auctions. They went over great.
    I love hot chocolate and hubby drinks french vanilla cream in his coffee. You have given me several new recipes to try.
    As for cold - Iowa winters can be brutal -20 degrees F or -29 C, with cold blowing snow. Yes, you may be chilled but SA does not know what real cold is like.

  19. OOOoooooo Millie, I am a chocoholic. When you find the perfect one, please share. Have a great weekend. Heidi

  20. Definitely the one with the pinch of cayenne! Just like in my favorite movie Chocolat!
    Happy Weekend Millie & MOTH!

  21. Possibly the best chocolate post ever......those are seriously good.....the white chocolate recipe nearly pushed me over the edge.....YUMMMMMMMYYYYY!!!!
    Great post Millie :)

  22. What a weekend that would be Millie - some of those recipes are deadly!!! I just love a hot chocolate on a cold day!!

  23. That all looks delightful! I will have to come back and gather recipes when winter comes! ENJOY your weekend!

  24. Stop it Millie - you make it too hard to choose which one to try first! All printed off now and filled in my "only try one a year if you want to fit into you new outfit" section of the recipe folder.
    Great post but! I'm going to out the kettle on!

  25. JEALOUS! I'm melting here in FLA. I want some of your weather and I want some hot chocolate STAT!

  26. Oohhh... me too loves hot chocolate... irregardless of the weather.

  27. Delicious looking cups of chocolate! It's summer here, but I'm book marking this page for fall and winter. I love this post--couldn't wait to read the next recipe and the next and the next...Deborah

  28. Millie its only 17 here today in my part of Holland Ill take one. The pictures were really great. Thanks... Julie in Holland

  29. Hi Millie. Well it is not freezing in Sydney and it is not warm either, so I think one of your hot chocolate recipes could go down just fine~ You certainly have provided something for everyone [even me with the coffee number]. I guess providing variety becomes habit after years of feeding 5 boys at the same evening meal. I don't know what MOTH is on about. I think you must be the Masterchef by now! Hope your weekend is relaxing.

  30. Seriously heart-pounding post!
    The first one is something that...well, it's too early here for me to find the words...At the first hint of Fall, Taylor & I are going to set aside time to try each & every one. Will let you know our results!
    Now I'm going to get my second cup of espresso which now seems more like muddy water! XOXO

  31. the most wonderful hot chocolate recipes in the world!!it is never to hot for those recipes, thanks. your blog just could not be any better!

  32. We are roasting up here but these recipes still look delicious to me!

  33. i love hot chocolate, and a great one is hard to come by!!
    i will save these recipes.


And none will hear the postman's knock
Without a quickening of the heart.
For who can bear to feel himself forgotten?
~W.H. Auden

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