Hot chocolate my way. Definition: creamy, thick and made with chocolate, not cocoa powder. The trick? Leave it on the heat until it starts to thicken. Real chocolate, the dark, and real milk, the whole. Healthy? Of course and one of the most popular food in its different shapes and flavors around the world. It is a great holiday gift, surely to please the receiver. Unfortunately, nowadays many manufacturers, including well-known brands, are using PGPR, an artificial ingredient that allows them to reduce the amount of cocoa butter. Besides the outrageous of substituting the main ingredient of a chocolate, it tastes oily and results in a bad quality product. This chocolates should be avoided. Another concern is the wide use of soy-lecithin as an emulsifier and is getting harder to find chocolate products without this additive, but there are still a few purist manufacturers that make a point to remain GMO-free, excluding it.
But let’s leave the legal definition of chocolate to the FDA and hope they will resist the lobbyists from the Chocolate Manufacturers Association and keep safeguarding the consumer as an agency responsible for protecting and promoting public health through the regulation and supervision of food safety, among other things. For now, let’s enjoy the emanation of flavors while we’re making this hot chocolate. It reminds me of a hot chocolate I used to order at an Italian brand café chain, famous for their espresso but that offered this unique “hot ciok” that we would have to eat by spoon as thick as it was. I heard that they’re opening a few locations in the USA as well, so maybe I happen to try one of those sometime soon.
In the meantime, and because this is perfect for Christmas morning, and always better homemade, let me suggest this nice holiday breakfast: hot chocolate served not with heavy cream but with plain Greek yogurt. The contrast of flavors is amazing. It’s something like a dessert called “hot & cold”, consisting of a hot chocolate ganache served over heavy cream ice-cream, but much more healthy, made with yogurt and no butter or any other sugar added to the equation, less the one already present in the chocolate brand of your preference. Prepare a nice plate of fresh fruit to serve together (I used pineapple, grapefruit and organic royal gala apple) and you’ll have a delightfully happy start of the day. Merry Christmas to all.
Hot Chocolate with Greek Yogurt
Preparation time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 10 minutes
1 cup whole milk
1/2 cup dark chocolate chips (I used 60% cocoa)
1/4 tsp cinnamon powder (optional)
7 oz plain Greek yogurt
Heat over medium heat the milk, chocolate and cinnamon. Stirring often, allow the milk to boil and wait until the mix starts to thicken. Remove from heat and divide through two mugs or glasses. Dollop the Greek yogurt on top of each mug or use a large pastry tip with a bag to make a cute decoration. Enjoy it by spoon and serve with a side dish of freshly cut fruit.