I wrote this post on The Best Ever Hot Chocolate a few days ago, and had a reader ask for ideas on how to adjust this a recipe for someone who is a teetotaler. I think it is a great question, as I know there are many people, with reasons I completely respect, for choosing to not consume alcohol.
I made the original recipe (click here for recipe) minus the Godiva Liqueur, and added another teaspoon of sugar. I am drinking a cup right now, and it tastes creamy and good. (I used whole milk for creaminess.) I have a few ideas to make it even better.
My first idea would be to make Homemade Chocolate Sauce, and add a teaspoon or 2 in place of Godiva Liqueur. This recipe is from Small Notebook (I love this blog, one of my favorites), I put this on my “homemade gifts to make sometime” list.
The next idea I had is quite exciting!! I owe the inspiration to my Grandpa Earl, who is a huge fan of Werther’s Original Candies. They had a way of showing up in his overalls’ pockets, which delighted my girls whenever they got to see him. When we go to Missouri to visit Grandpa and Grandma, there is always a bowl of them sitting in the entryway, inviting us to help ourselves. I will never eat a Werther’s Original candy without thinking of grandpa!
Back to my idea, I think it would be delicious to drop a Werther’s Original candy into the mug along with the Dove Chocolates. I like that it would keep with the theme of dropping candies in the mug. In fact… I will call it Candy Drop Hot Cocoa. Who wouldn’t want to drink something with a name like that? I have never tried this in Hot Cocoa, but I have dropped them into a steaming cup of coffee and they would slowly melt, giving my coffee a great buttery, caramel-y flavor. If you wanted faster dissolving, you could crush the candies before adding. The Werther’s hard candies come in a variety of flavors–Mocha, Butterscotch, Irish Creme, Vanilla– how fun would it be to experiment with all of those? Werther’s also sell a soft caramel chew, which might dissolve easier.
Here are some other ideas to add to a plain mug of hot chocolate to make it special:
~Crushed Candy Canes or a few drops of peppermint extract
~A few drops of almond extract
~Crushed Peanut Butter Cups to melt into it- oh yum.
~A bit of flavored cappuccino
~Any flavor of powdered or liquid creamers
~A pinch of cayenne and some cinnamon for a Mexican Hot Chocolate
~A spoonful of Raspberry Jelly
~Red Hot Candies
All this talk of Hot Chocolate brings back a child hood memory. My mom would have us make Hot Chocolate and accompany it with Buttered Toast. She showed us how to cut the toast diagonally in half and dip it into the Hot Chocolate. I know it sounds like soggy yuckness, but the saltiness of the butter mixed with the sweet chocolate was quite tasty!
PS. Can you tell my healthy eating goes pretty much out the window during the holidays? We still get all our nutrients from real food, but we definitely add more processed foods and sugar foods than normal.
I’m completely at peace about that, as long as my family holds on to their good health throughout the season and as long as we keep it to a minimum.