Just as refreshing lemonade is an indispensable drink of summer days, hot chocolate is king in the colder months. The delicious, aromatic drink has a warming effect, and properly prepared it also has many health benefits. How to make drinking chocolate so that your taste buds are entranced, while enjoying the health-promoting benefits hidden in chocolate?
Why should you drink hot chocolate?
At the outset, it should be emphasized that white and milk chocolate should not be used to make the drink. White chocolate is actually a combination of sugar, fat and flavorings, while milk chocolate contains less cocoa than dark chocolate, for more harmful additives.
Drinking hot chocolate can prove to be a healthy snack. It lowers blood pressure, has a stimulating effect and raises serotonin levels, commonly known as the happy hormone. In addition, chocolate contains antioxidants that protect the body from the devastating effects of free radicals that lead to aging, cancer and various diseases.
What kind of chocolate to choose?
When searching for the right chocolate for a sweet drink, it is worth spending a while longer at the store shelves to study the composition of the products. The rule is simple: the shorter the composition, the better. Chocolate should be based on three ingredients: cocoa pulp, cocoa fat and sugar, a longer composition indicates a higher degree of processing. It is best to go for dark chocolate with a minimum of 70% cocoa solids. Be wary of palm oil, artificial flavors and preservatives.
How to prepare hot chocolate?
Preparation of hot chocolate is trivial and takes several minutes. To prepare you need the following ingredients:
- 250 ml of 30% cream,
- 100 ml of milk,
- 200 g of dark chocolate.
Slice or grate the chocolate. Heat the milk and cream over low heat, without bringing to a boil. Add the chopped chocolate and optional spices and stir until the consistency is perfectly smooth, then pour into cups. Serve the chocolate right away, and you can add coconut shavings, flaked almonds or handmade whipped cream on top. For a sweeter effect, pour marshmallows into the cup, this way of serving is popular especially in the US. The resulting drink is already ready to drink, but you can enrich it with various additional ingredients. For coffee lovers, a good option is to pour espresso into the chocolate. Those who prefer spicier flavors should try the drink with the addition of half a teaspoon of chili. A good idea would be to pour spices into the chocolate: cinnamon, cardamom, gingerbread spices or a vanilla stick. Think dark chocolate lacks sweetness? Reach for honey, cane sugar or a scoop of ice cream. Break the chocolate in an interesting way with fresh raspberries or fruit jam, besides, a pinch of salt will be an unusual combination. You can also add alcohol to the prepared chocolate, rum, amaretto and liqueurs are especially suitable for this.
Hot chocolate for vegans
Vegans do not have to give up their evenings with a mug of warming chocolate. All they need to do is swap animal products for plant-based milk and coconut cream. The best option is to go for almond milk, soy milk or vanilla milk.
main photo: unsplash.com/Mekht