Do you know the difference between hot chocolate and hot cocoa? Are you looking for a rich & creamy homemade hot chocolate recipe? I’ve got the answers and the recipes to keep you warm on this winter weekend.
Good Saturday morning friends, today I’m joining my friends Kim of Northern California Style and Juliet of Make Mine a Spritzer to share our Saturday Meanderings so after you finish here make sure to hop on over to their blogs to see what they are up to this morning!
I realize that spring is all over Pinterest and filling the squares on Instagram but it is still 29 days away on my calendar. Not to mention it is 29 degrees this morning and winter winds and snow storms this weekend make it hard to think about decorating eggs, and getting ready for Easter, which by the way is 57 days away.
So for now, I am living my best life and enjoying the final weeks of “nesting season.” If you have a hard time embracing winter and all it has to offer check out this post I wrote a few weeks back where I shared 11 Ways to Beat the Winter Blues.
One of my favorite ways to beat the winter blues or any blues for that matter is with a hot chocolate and a book or a pile of magazines. So today I thought I would share 3 rich, delicious and warm winter drinks, two are hot chocolate and one is a hot cocoa. As for something to read while you are drinking it you could check out my Friday Favorites post if you missed it yesterday, I do think you might need a pot of chocolate, the or coffee there are so many links.
3 Hot Chocolate Drinks
The Difference Between Hot Chocolate and Hot Cocoa
If you have been reading here for more than one week than you know that I LOVE hot chocolate, not hot cocoa, hot chocolate. Because the terms are used interchangeably people think they are the same things but they are very different.
Hot cocoa is made using coco powder, milk and sugar. Hot chocolate is made with chocolate, typically shaved and melted into milk or cream. Hot cocoa is light and reminiscent of the Swiss Miss you drank as a child. Hot chocolate is thick, rich, and decadent, almost like drinking melted chocolate from a cup. Both are delicious piled high with marshmallows and whipped cream on a cold winter day.
Dulce de Leche Hot Chocolate
4 cups half and half
1/2 cup canned or jared Dulce de Leche
8 oz. dark chocolate chopped
1/3 cup Drambuie optional
2 teaspoons Nielsen Massey pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup heavy whipping cream
Whisk together 4 cups of half and half and 1/2 cup canned or jared dulce de leche in a medium saucepan. Simmer over medium, stirring constantly until heated through, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and whisk in 8 ounces of chopped dark chocolate, (optional 1/3 cup of Drambuie), 2 teaspoons vanilla extract, and 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt until the mixture is smooth. Next, beat 1 cup of cold heavy cream in a cold bowl with an electric mixer on high until stiff peaks form, about 1 minute. Pour hot chocolate mixture into 4 serving cups. Top each with whipped cream, a drizzle of dulche de leche and shaved or chopped chocolate.
Mast Brothers Classic Hot Cocoa
4 Cups whole milk
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 ounces dark chocolate
In a medium saucepan combine milk, cocoa powder, sugar and vanilla, bring to a boil, and stir frequently. Pour into mugs, add shaved chocolate to each mug or add a toasted marshmallow and shaved chocolate.
What started out as Mast Brothers Chocolate has evolved over the last 13 or so years into Mast Market an amazing company that not only makes bean to bar chocolates, but also to quote Rick the co-founder ” we are roasting coffee, milling flour, blending teas, churning butters, making jams, preserves, and even homemade ice cream. We are working directly with local farmers to bring you organic grains like heirloom popcorn, rice and farro, and heirloom beans for your autumnal soups and stews. All in one place. Look for local, seasonal produce, fresh pastas made from freshly milled flour, and a growing line of house brewed and bottled beverages.” You can find out more about Mast Market on their website.
This chocolate atole is a wonderful addition to your drinking chocolate repertoire because it “kicks it up a notch” with a little spice and a little rum. The consistency is a bit like pudding because of the cornmeal. I think you will love it. .
Dark Chocolate Atole
Recipe from Katherine Clapner of Dude, Sweet Chocolate
1/2 cup of fine ground cornmeal
21/2 cups of whole milk
21/2 cups of water
1 teaspoon Saigon cinnamon
5 tablespoons cane sugar
1 tablespoon of dark rum
6 tablespoons Valrhona cocoa powder
6 ounces Valrhona Equatorial chocolate
Combine the corn meal, milk water, cinnamon, sugar, vanilla and rum in a blender and blend the mixture until smooth.Transfer the mixture to a medium saucepan and add the salt and cocoa powder. Bring to a boil over medium heat whisking constantly. Reduce heat to low and cook until the mixture thickens slightly, then cook for an additional 5 minutes. Add chocolate and whisk until melted. Serve with whipped cream and enjoy.
Of course winter days also call for a hearty soup or stew, it is almost a requisite on a cold day to have the smell of something warm and comforting wafting through the house. This recipe for broccoli cheddar soup popped up in my email last night, doesn’t it look delicious?
Today I am making a pot of creamy cauliflower and leek soup to warm us up and I am baking homemade yeast bread and almond pastries. Sometimes yeast is not my “friend” so I will let you know how everything turns out.
Speaking of staying warm, have you been watching the Olympics? They are over this weekend and won’t be back for 4 years so if you are interested there is still time to take them in. You can find up to date information here.
Just in case you were curious, Why Don’t Figure Skaters Get Dizzy?
If you need something to read, watch or listen to my friend Katie at Preppy Empty Nester has you covered with all of the latest tv shows, books and more.
Have a great weekend, thank you for stopping by and spending part of your day with me. I hope that you enjoy your four day weekend and the winter weather. Try one of the chocolate drinks and let me know what you think
Don’t forget to visit Kim at Northern California Style and Juliet at Make Mine a Spritzer and see what they are up to today.
LA CONTESSA says
SWISS MISS NOW THATS GOING BACK IN TIME FOR ME!I COULD NOT STAND IT!
MUCH PREFERRED THE NESTLES OUT OF A YELLOW CAN YOU WOULD THEN ADD WARM MILK!
AS FAR AS DIZZINESS FOR SKATER’S its called SPOTTING.PICK a point and turn and look at the point until you are finished same as a BALLET DANCER I BELIEVE.Doing PIROUETTES ……………..
Now that is really going back in TIME FOR ME!!
I could not agree more Elizabeth, I was never a fan of Swiss Miss. My mother and grandmother made us cocoa or hot chocolate homemade, which is where my love for the beverage began. I was never a ballerina but I did take ice skating lessons.
Rebecca Payne says
I love Hot Chocolate. Thank you for the recipes.
Rebecca, if you have a favorite recipe please share.
Hi Elizabeth, What a great post. I had no clue about cocoa vs chocolate! I am now craving a chocolate drink and I think I have to make this chocolate atole which sounds yummy. Thank you also for the soups ! I need a few new ones and the combo of leeks and cauliflower is a winner. I’m popping over the Friday links with my tea ( or maybe cocoa!) this afternoon to enjoy them all. Honestly it’s one of the most relaxing parts of my weekend reading your fun links! Have a wonderful one and stay cozy. xo
Kim, thank you for your kind words about my Friday post. It is my favorite to write, I love sharing the interesting articles, books and more that I enjoy. I hope that you try the chocolate atole or one of the other chocolate drinks. The cauliflower soup is so easy and is one of my all time favorites. Loved your post today, your office is classic, and beautiful. I am fascinated by the Vogue videos, and by the way, Brooke Shields looked fabulous. Have a wonderful weekend.
Swiss Miss takes me back! You know I’m a lover of cocoa … every morning. Milk and cocoa powder in my frother. For a more decadent treat I’m pinning and saving these hot chocolate recipes. So so good! I also love a good soup and I’m saving these recipes as well. It may not be 29 degrees here in California but it’s chilly for us and hearty soups will be on the menu for a while longer. Hope you have a great weekend, Elizabeth! xo
Juliet, I’ve seen a few daffodils here but the weather is downright chilly. Soups and chocolate are on the menu here for a few more weeks. I think it is so funny that we both found the same door mat! Loved your post, and the donkeys!!! Have a wonderful weekend.
wow all those chocolate drinks have me drooling. I’m going to have to try a couple of them. Yum!
I’m a soup maker but the family hasn’t been that keen. Maybe I need to try a few new recipes and yours sound delicious.
Heidi, soup is the perfect meal, and typically they are easy to make. I hope the family enjoyed one or both of these. As for the chocolate, I think they will love them all.
Thank you for teaching me the difference between hot chocolate and hot cocoa. I am definitely a lover of hot chocolate.
Have w wonderful weekend Paula.
Sarah London says
Adore that magazine too! And soup! Thanks for a couple of recipes
One of my all time favorites! Have a wonderful weekend Sarah.
Lynne Zemaitis says
Thank you so much for sharing these recipes! They’re perfect for these cold winter days. I hope you’re enjoying a wonderful weekend!
The addition of dulce de leche sounds so decadent and delicious!
William Kendall says
I love hot chocolate.