Monday, January 31, 2011

how to warm your insides.

Brace yourself children, this is a long one. I'm proud to present my first tutorial on my blog. I've been meaning to do this for a while actually but never got around to it. I'd like to introduce you to your next purchase. This is William-Sonoma's Rich & Creamy Hot Chocolate. I discovered it three Christmases ago and now I know that I can't live without it. In this tin is the sweetest smelling chocolate. The mixture is just purely shaved chocolate. It seems a little silly to be spending $28 on a tin of chocolate flakes but I'll gladly spare a pretty penny to satisfy my taste buds. I personally think it's the best hot chocolate you can make at home. Like it says, this hot chocolate is very rich and creamy and quite filling too. The tin is also a nifty, little collector's item. I use it for my art pencils, fineliners, short brushes, and other little knick knacks. If you're a thrifty fellow and like to do things yourself, opt for buying a quality bar of chocolate and shaving it down. It'll work just as well but will take a few tries to get just as right. With a snow storm about to hit Toronto, I think this tutorial is just about on time. This is my take on how to make hot chocolate.

Step 1: Choose your favourite mug.

Step 2: Find milk.

In this tutorial I'll be making hot chocolate suited to one cup so 250 ml should do the trick.

How convenient! The perfect amount of milk. And I honestly didn't stage this. It just so happens I had this much milk left in my fridge.

Step 3: Pour milk into saucepan and let heat.

At this point we're just letting the milk heat up, you don't want to boil it. This usually takes about seven or eight minutes on a medium to low setting on the stove. On the tin, it says to wait for bubbles to form around the edges of the pan but in my experience I just wait until I see a faint bit of smoke rising. I didn't want to say 'smoke' because it doesn't sound good coming from a cooking tutorial but I didn't know how else to describe it. Don't burn or boil your milk!

Step 4: Add mix.

Once the milk is ready and well-heated, add your hot chocolate mix. Five tablespoons is just about right to me. It's really personal preference. After trying it for the first time you'll know whether you want to add more or less mix to the milk.

Step 5: Stir, stir, stir!

Keeping the heat at the same level, stir in the chocolate until completely dissolved.

Like so!

Step 6: Pour into your mug.

This is a pretty dangerous step for clumsy people like me.

And voila!

Step 7: Add toppings.

This step is totally optional but highly recommended. Pile on as much whipped cream as you desire. I also like to sprinkle on a bit of hot chocolate mix on top for some pizazz.

Now, unfortunately, I didn't realize I had run out of whipped cream while taking the photos for this tutorial so I couldn't show you the final result of that hot chocolate. But I do have these photos I had taken during Christmas! The glasses below are the actual ones meant for hot chocolate.

Delicious looking, isn't it? It's great with some shortbread cookies or perhaps a biscotti to dip. I hope you guys enjoyed this little how-to and are inspired to try it out yourselves!