Monday, December 27, 2010

Castilian Hot Chocolate

I vote we get a snow day after every Christmas weekend...five days off is definitely the way to make merry :). The wind is howling like mad out...which means it's time for Castilian Hot Chocolate :

This is my favorite way to hot chocolate bliss...those Spanish know a thing or two about hot chocolate, let me tell you. None of this powdery mix junk, this is the real deal : chocolate, sugar, milk, simmered together until it's super thick and rich and luscious...almost pudding-like, but still drinkable. Trust me on this one, once you try it you'll never settle for Swiss Miss again.

The recipe is from "The Vegetarian Epicure (Book Two)", by Anna Thomas. I've mentioned Book One in a previous very first cookbook of my very own, given to me when I was just a little girl and giving me a huge start in my quest for culinary greatness. Book Two explores more "foreign" dishes, well at least "foreign" for the time... Spanish, Italian, Mexican, Indian...definitely all with a 70's bent, complete with when to pass around the joint :). Okay, so maybe the books are a little dated now...but both will always hold a special place in my heart. And both still have some damn fine recipes.

The only update I make to this one is to use the darkest cocoa powder I can find...Hershey's makes a Special Dark version which works perfectly.

simmering away

dark and delicious

screaming for whipped cream !!

Castilian Hot Chocolate

1/2 cup cocoa powder (darker the better)
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon cornstarch 
1/2 cup water
1 quart milk 
whipped cream (optional)

Whisk the cocoa and sugar together into a medium-sized saucepan. Dissolve the cornstarch in the water, and stir into the cocoa and sugar until it is a smooth paste.

Begin heating the mixture, stirring it with a whisk, and gradually pour in the milk. Continue stirring with the whisk as you bring the liquid to a simmer.

Allow the chocolate to simmer for about 10 minutes, stirring often, until it is thick, glossy and completely smooth.

Serve steaming hot, topped with whipped cream if desired.


  1. Yummm - you are so right, made from scratch with dark rich chocolate, you'll NEVER go back to the powdered stuff .... must-make-some-nowwwww!

  2. this looks heavenly. was in spain in september and had my fair share of churros & hot chocolate. really like your blog. i'm the founder of and wanted to see if you'd be interested in having us come film you making one of your dishes. one of those yummy crockpot dishes you featured would be great. email me if you're interested and i we can talk details. thanks, lynne -