This delicious Hot Chocolate Recipe by Bravetart will bring a tasty sparkle to your eye - it's steaming full of vanilla and chocolate goodness!
16 ounces whole milk
8 ounces cream
1 vanilla bean, split and scraped
4 ounces sugar
3 ounces assorted dark chocolate
½ ounce cocoa powder (Dutch or natural)
½ teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon instant coffee or ¼ teaspoon instant espresso powder
optional: vanilla or peppermint marshmallows
Combine the milk, cream, vanilla bean pod and seeds in a large, stainless steel pot. Bring to a simmer, then shut off the heat, cover, and steep for at least an hour, or as long as overnight (in the fridge, of course) if you have a major crush on vanilla.
When ready to proceed, return the diary to a simmer. Meanwhile, break up or roughly chop the chocolates and sift the cocoa powder. Once the milk begins to bubble, add the chocolate, cocoa powder, salt, and instant coffee powder.
Whisk gently and continue heating until the chocolates have fully melted and the mixture comes to a boil. Continue whisking for a full 30 seconds more, then remove the pot from the heat. Use a spoon to taste, and “season” with an extra pinch of salt or splash of milk to suit your preference.
Ladle into mugs, and serve with marshmallows.
Alternately, cool to room temperature and refrigerated for up to two weeks, then rewarmed as needed. The chocolate will solidify into a raft that floats to the top, but once rewarmed it will melt back into the chocolate milk.