Saturday, November 10, 2007

I expect you've noticed that we almost always have some sort of dessert. I think dessert improves both my mental and physical health (if I eat a reasonable dessert, I'm not off sneaking mallowmars to console myself over the deprivation). I happen to love to bake, but I rarely take the time to do so. Therefore, homemade desserts are particularly special. Tonight's New Mexican Hot Chocolate is a favorite (the previously noted spicy hot cocoa is a cocoa mix from Lake Champlain, which is good, but not quite this good!). I love hot drinks when it's cold outside, and the spice adds an unexpected twist. This is especially good at the holidays or after any blustery day. Enjoy!

New Mexican Hot Chocolate – J (vaguely inspired by Cooking Light)
Makes 2 oversize mugs

¼ cup water
¼ cup honey
2.5 T unsweetened cocoa
heaping ¼ t cinnamon
¼ t nutmeg
⅛ t salt
2 cups skim milk
½ t vanilla
2 T sugar
3 shakes cayenne (or to taste)

Combine water, honey, cocoa, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring constantly with a whisk. Add milk and vanilla, stirring constantly. Heat just until tiny bubbles form on the edge of the cocoa. DO NOT BOIL.

Remove from heat and stir in sugar and cayenne. Stir to integrate sugar. Pour into two mugs and serve hot.

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