For me it would have to be hot cocoa. Good, homemade hot cocoa mind you, NOT the packaged stuff or mixes. My daughter cracked me up once when she was tiny. We went to IHOP and she ordered hot cocoa. She took a sip and said, "Mommy, I don't think this is hot cocoa." (You can definitely tell the difference!) Dr. Weil says that hot cocoa is actually good for you, so I don't feel as guilty as I once did!
Here's what I do...
Hot Cocoa Recipe
- Take a small saucepan and cover the bottom with turbinado sugar (you can use regular but I just like the taste of raw sugar.)
- Add about 2-3 Tablespoons of cocoa. (I use Penzey's High Fat Content Natural Cocoa.) If you use Hershey's or such you'll need to add a Tablespoon or so more and also add a Tablespoon or two of butter. Also put in cinnamon if you'd like (I sprinkle a bit of Penzey's Korinjite Cinnamon.)
- Stir the cocoa and sugar and water to cover, about a 1/2 a cup or so.
- Bring to a boil over medium high heat and immediately pour in milk to fill up pan (about 4 cups.)
- Add about 2 teaspoons of vanilla and heat til warm and stir with a whisk occasionally.
- Serve with whatever you like- a dollop of whipped cream, sprinkle of cinnamon, marshmallows, (shot of Bailey's or Kahlua for you stressed out folks!)
There are so many different hot cocoa recipes and variations.
If you use shaved or chopped up chocolate instead of cocoa it's then called "hot chocolate!" Also good but I like the way the cocoa totally dissolves myself.
Did you know that "real" hot cocoa originated with the Aztecs? Some say it actually had chicken broth, wine, and hot peppers in it! I made it once to see what it was like and it was good, but different.
The Kuna indians in Panama drink 5 or more cups of hot cocoa a day! (They make it from fresh cocoa beans though...)
(There are small beans inside covered with a yummy white fruit- we used to love to get these as kids in Panama!)
I made these delicious cinnamon rolls this morning that my mom gave me the recipe for. So yummy!
Served with hot cocoa, just about perfect on a cold day!
*I had such a great response to Monday's Green Housekeeping post that I decided to make it a weekly thing. Not sure what day yet but I think it will be a Mr. Linky type thing and we can share Green living tips! I have to figure out how to make a button and such first. If you have any suggestions please let me know!