Remember the movie Chocolat? From the moment Vianne meets Roux, she tries to guess his favorite chocolate treat. She tries everything, and in the end she serves him hot chocolate. “How did you know?” he asks. Vianne is clueless, so Roux motions to the drink, “My favorite.”
Well mine too. Simple, warm, and delicious it hits the spot- without the guilt of a fatty dessert. Perfect. I’ve always loved hot chocolate made on the stove. (I do fall back on the instant stuff when I’m too lazy to pull out a pot, but it’s never as good as doing it the right way.) Recently, I wanted to shake things up a bit so I went digging for a new recipe for hot chocolate. What I found was this: Agave Sweetened Hot Chocolate from www.fabulousfoods.com. Now this recipe called for agave syrup. I didn’t have any so I went with something just as good imho- pure maple syrup.
New studies show that pure maple syrup is one of the healthier choices when it comes to natural sweeteners. It contains natural phenols, which are beneficial antioxidants, as well as manganese and zinc which help boost your immune system. Combine that with the antioxidant properties of dark chocolate and you have a sweet, beneficial treat. After all, the Algonquian native peoples thought of maple syrup as a source of energy and nutrition, and the Aztecs were long producing cacao as a tribute to their priests and gods. How can you go wrong with that?
Without further ado, here’s the recipe for my hot chocolate:
2 1/2 tablespoons cocoa powder (unsweetened)
2 cups milk
1/4 cup water
1/4 pure maple syrup
1/2 tsp pure vanilla abstract
In a small pot, combine the milk and the cocoa powder. Mix this well with a whisk to get rid of any lumps. Add the water and maple syrup, then bring to a simmer but do not boil. As always when heating milk, don’t take your eyes off of it, or it will boil over and burn. After simmering for a few minutes, turn off the heat and stir in the vanilla. Serve and enjoy!
Maple Sweetened Hot Chocolate | Rachel Hardy