October 10, 2003
As an amateur I am interested in your experiences in making drinking chocolate with cocoa powder. I now have at home Slitti, Valrhona and Droste (Dutch brand), but I haven't had the ultimate experience yet.
As posted under the Max Brenner-topic; I'm in heaven when drinking the Viennese Demel's hot chocolate. So far I've only reached next to heaven at home, and melted chocolate doesn't seem to make the big difference compared to cocoa powder.
Anyone with recommendations for
1) which is the best brand of cocoa powder
2) whether to dissolve the powder (and sugar) in boiling water or boiling milk
3) whether or not to boil the milk or keep it below 70 C
4) whether to use skimmed milk, semi-fat or fat milk
5) whether to use brown (cane of course) sugar or white sugar
6) the ultimate amount of sugar to make it sweet without killing the chocolate taste (I know sweetness is a subjective matter, but anyway ...)
7) whether or not to add chili pepper (I use to use a flake of dried red chili - don't know if it really makes a difference except when I add to much ...!)
8) and of course how many teaspoons of cocoa powder for how much milk (I have discovered that some brands are best if not too strong and vice versa).
Meanwhile, I'll do empirical systematic studies at my home kitchen laboratory ...
July 26, 2003
I started this very topic a few months ago that you may find interesting. It's all in what you like, really. In mine, I use:
1 Cup Water
1/3 Cup Coffee
Three Tablespoons Cocoa Powder
Two Teapoons Brown Sugar
A Pinch of Cayenne
Boil the liquids... Mix the dry ingredients with a fork... Pour liquids on powder while blending with a fork.
I don't like milk in mine because I don't like the rich-milky taste it gives it. If you do use milk, It will make it creamier, so the amount of fat in the milk will determine how creamy it is. You might even consider heavy cream if you don't care about keeping fat and calories in balance. I use coffee and brown sugar to give it a deeper flavor than if I used normal sugar and all water. The pinch of cayenne will leave a tingle in the mouth. It's not a spicey sensation at all. It just kind of warms you more. I use normal cocoa powder, so it's rather gritty because it doesn't disolve, but that's find with me. I've never tried dutch-processed, but it will disolve much better than the stuff that I use. As Mont reccomended to me, you might want to actually melt one of your bars down with milk or water to get the best chocolate drink. I don't do that because it seems like a waste to me.
July 31, 2006
I have to agree that the best hot chocolate I've ever had was made just with chocolate and milk, and maybe added sugar. Valrhona Manjari is good for this.
October 10, 2003
Thanks for the tip about using Manjari from Valrhona :-) That _was_ in fact next to heaven when properly melted added into a small amount of boiling milk, then mixed with milk at approx 70 C. I also added a tiny amount of brown sugar. Fat level in the milk is really a matter of taste. I have tried to add a small amount of vanilla and red chili but without much difference. So far my favorite recipe!