I personally love Mexican Hot Chocolate all frothed up and hot on a cool morning, so I wanted to share this recipe with you that came from my husbands grandparents long ago.
Chocolate was a rage with the Spaniards when they first came to know it by way of the Aztecs. For the Aztecs, it was a sacred food, reserved mainly for priests. Chocolate is hugely popular and this Mexican Hot Chocolate is right in there among the ranks. It may be more popular when the weather is cold, but among many in New Mexico, hot Mexican Chocolate is drank as the morning beverage, just as coffee or tea is among other people.
This recipe is courtesy of Cynthia Detterick-Pineda of Andrews, TX. Check out more of Cynthia’s Southwest Recipes.
- 4 (1-ounce) squares Mexican chocolate*
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1/4 cup hot water
- Small pinch of salt
- 1 teaspoon instant coffee
- 2 cups of milk
- 1 egg (optional)
- 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 dried red chile pepper (you pick the size as the large it is, the more heat it will infuse)
- Cinnamon, ground (for sprinkling)
In a medium-sized saucepan over medium-low heat, add the Mexican chocolate, honey, hot water, salt, coffee, and chile pepper. Heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture just begins to boil; reduce heat to low and let simmer, stirring constantly, for approximately an additional 1 minute. Carefully stir in the milk and let sit over low heat until the chocolate is too warm to touch (you can see the steam rising from it).
In a medium-size bowl, beat the egg until it is frothy, you can use an electric mixer, a Molinillo, or a fork for this. You just need to make it as frothy as possible. Add the vanilla extract and beat in well.
The Molinillo [moh-lee-NEE-oh] is the Mexican chocolate "whisk" or "stirrer." It is made of "turned" wood and it is used to froth warm drinks such as hot chocolate, Atole, and Champurrado.
Pour the hot chocolate mixture over the frothed egg and beat it vigorously for about 15 seconds. You want to beat it until you have about 1/2- to 1-inch of foam on top. Pour into cups or mugs to serve. Sprinkle some ground cinnamon over the hot chocolate once it is in the mug.
Makes 3 to 4 servings.