In the Martin & Sylvia story "Getting Their Tree", Daddy has the idea of taking a horse-drawn wagon into the woods of a Christmas tree farm to find their holiday tree. There, they find not only a field of Christmas trees, but also a warm cabin and some delicious hot chocolate.
Since we’ve already covered regular hot chocolate in this space, this week I give you its even warmer, spicier cousin — Mexican hot chocolate.
The two recipes are similar, except that Mexican hot chocolate begins with special Mexican chocolate. Sold in hexagonal cakes, Mexican chocolate contains bits of granulated sugar and sometimes a pinch of cinnamon. I was able to find a recommended brand—Abuelita—in the international section of my regular grocery store.
Mexican hot chocolate also ends with a kick—a pinch of cayenne pepper and other warming spices. The pepper is optional, but I recommend trying it at least once as it really adds a layer of warmth to the drink.
The resulting cocoa is sweet without being cloying, and tastes like a special holiday version of regular hot chocolate. Give it a try for your next sledding party or cozy night in.
Mexican Hot Chocolate
(makes 2 mugs full, double or triple the recipe for larger crowds)
2 cups milk
1 tablet Abuelita Mexican chocolate (or approximately 3 ounces dark chocolate chips mixed with a pinch of cinnamon and a teaspoon of sugar)
Optional for serving:
a cinnamon stick
Put the milk into a small pot to simmer. Chop the chocolate and add it to the milk, stirring gently until it melts. Add a small pinch of each of the spices, then whisk the hot chocolate mixture furiously to make it nice and frothy.
Pour into mugs and top with a generous dollop of whipped cream. Add a cinnamon stick and an extra sprinkle of nutmeg for garnish if you wish.
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About the Author
The Sparkle Kitchen Series is created by Meryl Carver-Allmond.
Meryl lives in a hundred year old house near the prairie with her sweet husband, two pre-schoolers, one puppy, one gecko, and about ten chickens. While she's been writing since she could pick up a pen, in recent years she's discovered the joy of photography, too. She feels lucky to be able to combine those skills, along with a third passion--showing people that cooking for themselves can be healthy and fun--in her weekly Sparkle Kitchen posts.
When Meryl isn't writing for Sparkle Kitchen, you can find her on her personal blog, My Bit of Earth, where she writes about chickens, babies, knitting, gardening, food, photography, and whatever else tickles her fancy on any given day.