Monday, December 13, 2010

Rich & 'Dreamy' Hot Chocolate

Sometimes I reward myself at the end of a cold day by wrapping up in a blanket in my favorite chair.  The only other things I need to feel complete is a cup of extra-chocolatey hot chocolate, plus a great book. 

Ganache is a French term for a mix of chocolate and cream - so it’s a natural solution to quick & easy, ultra creamy hot chocolate.  With the prep work done for you, all you need is a portion from the freezer dropped in a cup of cold milk.  The microwave does the rest.  Try it and see if you ever want to go back to a pouch of powder again...
Cocoa powder from a can is a great convenience, but it takes quite a bit of tweaking to get it just right.  First, it’s never rich enough (I always end up making it with milk instead of water, or adding twice the amount of powder it calls for).  Next, I can never stir hard enough to get rid of the clumps of undissolved powder.  

When I ran across this idea in Cooks Country, I was anxious to try it.  It really is rich and delicious - with no lumps to ruin the experience.  With a little advance preparation, you can have a bag of one dozen of these ganache portions in the freezer ready for you next time you have a hankering for the best hot chocolate ever.  

The only change I would make is to either add a little sugar, or use milk chocolate chips.  The food writer said it was more than sweet enough with semi-sweet, but I beg to disagree.  Also, if you don’t want to get chocolate all over your hands as you roll it into balls - leave the ganache in a sealed container and use a small ice cream scoop to portion it into your mug of milk.  

For this time-saving trick to having decadent hot chocolate in minutes - go to:

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