This is the kind of stuff that the kids often beg me to make for them on a cold winter morning. This drink is quick and easy to prepare and like many of my recipes, it is also easily adaptable to variation. Feel free to add your own unique and personal touch! Click "Read More" below for the recipe...
The ground cacao nibs and the toasted almonds really make this a superb cup of chocolate. Don't worry if you don't have these items on hand. They will not keep you from creating a wonderful drink. Experiment by adding a whole vanilla bean, a bit of ground cardamom, or even a touch of organic orange zest. You can even adjust the milk to water ratio according to your personal taste. Try adding brewed coffee in place of the water! I have been known to stretch a single cup of milk into a pretty damn good pot of hot chocolate.
Mexican Style Hot Chocolate
3 cups filtered water
1 or 2 cinnamon sticks
2 Tbsp ground cacao nibs*
2 Tbsp toasted ground almonds*
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp almond extract
1/2 cup sugar
1 dash ground cinnamon for garnish*
Combine all ingredients in a saucepan and place over low to medium-low heat on the stove.
Gently stir until all ingredients are well combined and the desired temperature is reached. This takes about 5 to 10 minutes. Be sure to allow enough time for the cinnamon sticks to impart their flavor.
Just before serving, remove the cinnamon sticks and whip the hot chocolate with a wire whisk or the traditional molinillo if you have one.
The cacao nibs, the toasted almonds, and the dash of cinnamon are not essential to the recipe. However, the addition of these ingredients really adds a lot of texture and complexity to the drink. The sugar can also be adjusted to your own taste.