A friend of mine called and said she was going to swing by on Wednesday night. I asked her if she was literally swinging by, or if she had time to come in for a cup of hot chocolate.
I offered the hot chocolate proverbially, thinking I would make a pot of decaf coffee, or offer her some egg nog. But she got so excited over the specific mention of hot chocolate, I feared that decaf coffee with fat-free creamer would probably be a letdown for her.
I have many wonderful memories of my mom making a mug of hot chocolate for me when I was growing up, and I am never without the makings in my pantry…the makings being those little packets of the powdered stuff, that is...just like my mom used.
Although I know my friend wouldn’t have thought a thing about it (she’s definitely a “come on to the back door, I’ll leave it open for you”-kind of friend), I hated to be pressing out the chocolatey-powdered lumps against the side of a microwaved mug when she walked in the door.
A quick internet search revealed there is such a thing as homemade hot chocolate…who knew???
I am kidding, of course (well, mostly…). I knew there was such a thing as homemade hot chocolate, but – outside of my friendly Starbucks – I don’t think I’d ever had any.
I found an easy recipe using basic ingredients, and I whipped up this little treasure in less than 15 minutes:
In a large saucepan, mix 4 cups milk (I used whole milk), 8 teaspoons sugar and 4 teaspoons cocoa powder (I went a little heavy on the sugar and cocoa), and 1 ½ cups of miniature marshmallows. Heat over medium, stirring occasionally (I used a wire whisk every minute or so), until the marshmallows are melted. Stir in 1 teaspoon vanilla extract (next time I might try peppermint extract!) and ladle into cups.
I topped our cups with whipped cream and a sprinkling of cinnamon. Delish!!!
While I don’t think I’ll abandon the convenience of those powdery packets of chocolatey goodness for myself, I try to avoid processed foods with the girls. (Yes, I know marshmallows are processed…but it’s all relative in my book.)
I’m looking forward to incorporating this easy recipe into my Mommy Handbook, sharing foamy cups of hot chocolate with A and B, and hopefully making some great memories that they will treasure as they have pantries of their own.