Indulgent Hot Chocolates

Not that we really need an excuse to put one of our all time guilty pleasures on a pedestal, but if we must then National Chocolate Week, the UK’s biggest celebration of all things chocolate, provides us with an extra nudge to indulge just a little.

Chocolate is a bit like a cup of tea. It can always be relied upon to resolve any type of problem life throws your way. For this reason I never take any risks. There is always an emergency stash of real dark chocolate hidden at the back of the cupboard, just in case!

To celebrate National Chocolate Week, Glasgow’s shopping emporium the St Enoch Centre is challenging sweet – toothed shoppers to create a new and unique hot chocolate drink.

To be in with a chance of winning luxury chocolate collections and gift vouchers up to the value of £150, Glasgow’s shopping destination is looking for chocoholics to create an inspirational recipe and share their tips and photos on Twitter using the hashtag #HotChocHotties.

Now this got the Chief Taster and I thinking and experimenting in the kitchen – well I sampled Geoff did the leg work! He can really nail a good hot chocolate. He has created two different flavours, both making for the perfect autumnal after dinner treat.

Both using 85% dark chocolate, the clove and cardamom hot chocolate is rich, fruity and decadent while the cinnamon and cardamom version with a hint of tabasco sauce is much lighter and accessible. Give them a go and let me know which you prefer.

 The Cooking Bit…

{Makes one mug of each version}

1. Begin by heating two mugs of milk in a pot with 15 cardamom pods until the milk begins to simmer. Don’t let the milk boil. While the milk is gently simmering heat two mugs in hot water.

2. Place two 25g  bars of 85% dark chocolate into both mugs. Then measure, using the flat surface of the wrong end of a teaspoon, a small amount of ground cloves and ground cinnamon. Place the cinnamon in one mug and the cloves in the other mug.

3. Next using a small sieve, divide the hot milk between each mug, pouring the cardamom flavoured milk through the sieve over the chocolate bar, allowing it to melt. Stir well ensuring all the ingredients have dissolved.

4. Finally in the cinnamon mug add a couple of splashes of tabasco sauce to taste.



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