Hot Chocolate with Homemade Whipped Creme
The Huffington Post ran an article last week entitled “30 Recipes You Should Know How To Cook By The Time You’re 30.” It immediately drew me in because A. I love lists and B. I love recipes. I have to say, though, I think the list was pretty ambitious. Grilled cheese was on there, which I agree with. Ditto for a basic vinaigrette, scrambled eggs, rice, chicken soup and risotto. But there were also some doozies: Minestrone. Polenta. Beef Bourguignon. C’mon HuffPo! I’m 38, attended culinary school, worked in the restaurant industry for 18 years, have been a keen cook for 20 and dedicate my life, now, to cooking and I can’t make a Beef Bourginon without consulting a few recipes. Much less Tofu stir-fry or Deviled Eggs. In their defense maybe they meant these were recipes you could cook with confidence, and a recipe, by the time you are 30.
So in the end I figured I liked their list but I think they over pitched it a little bit. Dial it down a little, I say. How many people make their own Whipped Creme or Hot Chocolate? In my opinion THOSE are things you should be able to make without a recipe…. by the time you are about 12.
- Fresh Whipped Creme
- Hot Chocolate Paste
- 1 cup (240 ml) heavy whipping creme
- 1 tablespoon (8 g) powdered sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 ml) vanilla
- Pour whipping creme into a standing mixer and turn onto medium high.
- When it is just starting to hold soft peaks (when you pull the whisk out and turn it to the side, the peaks are just starting to hold) turn it to low, add the powdered sugar and vanilla and then crank up to medium high speed again. Watch carefully and stop it as soon as it is the consistency you desire. Be careful: Overbeating turns the whipped creme into butter. Don't do that. Also, softer whipped creme is a much more homemade feel and works better in beverages.
- 1 cup unsweetened cocoa (Hershey's or something fancier)
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 cup milk
- Combine sugar and cocoa in a saucepan over medium heat and mix with a whisk.
- Add milk and vanilla to make a paste.
- Add 1.5 tablespoons of paste to every cup of hot milk. Whole milk is better than semi-skimmed.
- Top with fresh whipped creme and optional toppings like crushed candy canes, chocolate chips or cinnamon.
- 1 shot of Bailey's Irish Creme
- 1 shot of Rum + a sprinkle of cinnamon on top
- 1 shot of Brandy + a sprinkle of nutmeg on top
- 1 shot of Peppermint Schnapps + crushed candy cane on top