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Hot Chocolate


prairiegirl
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I think it's just regional. Nobody would say that cocoa powder isn't "chocolate." Because clearly, without question, it is. When you make a hot drink with it, what you've got is a hot chocolate drink.

Forgive me for being pedantic, but I definitely see them as two different things, though I enjoy both. Cocoa powder has a really deep cocoa flavour, but chocolate has cocoa butter and so seems to me to be richer. I usually make cocoa as a warming bed time drink - the cocoa flavour is intense, but it's not too rich. Hot chocolate on the other hand is a breakfast/ snack/ dessert/ treat, because it is so creamy and rich.

I generally have my "hot chocolate" made with a wedge of crumbly Mexican chocolate and water. Not sure where that fits in with your two finite categories.

As for your quest to change the regional common vernacular, all I can say to you is "good luck."

And if you manage it, please let me know.

I've got a few I'd like to change.

:smile:

Edited by Jaymes (log)

I don't understand why rappers have to hunch over while they stomp around the stage hollering.  It hurts my back to watch them. On the other hand, I've been thinking that perhaps I should start a rap group here at the Old Folks' Home.  Most of us already walk like that.

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Has anyone tried a hybrid of the two, where you use some chocolate and some cocoa powder? Kinda like when you make chocolate cake and you want to use chocolate and cocoa to get the characteristics of both.

Sure, the recipe I listed earlier in the thread (adapted from Pierre Hermé and some traditional sources) uses a chocolate mixture that's 1/6 cocoa powder by weight.

The chocolate vs. cocoa thing here is a bit pedantic. Cocoa is chocolate with much of the cocoa butter removed. Sure, all else being equal, cocoa will give a less rich drink. But all else needn't be equal. Higher fat milk or cream also give richness. And richness isn't always what you want. Sometimes you might like a lighter drink. And counter to some people's intuition, more richness mutes chocolate flavor, it doesn't enhance it.

I like to use chocolate because in general, I think the best chocolates have a better, rounder flavor than cocoa powders. But great cocoa powders taste better than lousy chocolates; I'll take Perignotti or Valrhona or Drost cocoa over Nestle or Bakers chocolate any day.

Cocoa is useful for intensifying the flavor of chocolate when you don't want to add more fat. That's also how I use it in other kinds of chocolate recipes.

Edited by paulraphael (log)

Notes from the underbelly

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Has anyone tried a hybrid of the two, where you use some chocolate and some cocoa powder? Kinda like when you make chocolate cake and you want to use chocolate and cocoa to get the characteristics of both.

The chocolate vs. cocoa thing here is a bit pedantic. Cocoa is chocolate with much of the cocoa butter removed. Sure, all else being equal, cocoa will give a less rich drink. But all else needn't be equal. Higher fat milk or cream also give richness. And richness isn't always what you want. Sometimes you might like a lighter drink. And counter to some people's intuition, more richness mutes chocolate flavor, it doesn't enhance it.

I completely agree with this, which is why I generally prefer my hot chocolate to be made with water.

I don't understand why rappers have to hunch over while they stomp around the stage hollering.  It hurts my back to watch them. On the other hand, I've been thinking that perhaps I should start a rap group here at the Old Folks' Home.  Most of us already walk like that.

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Has anyone tried a hybrid of the two, where you use some chocolate and some cocoa powder? Kinda like when you make chocolate cake and you want to use chocolate and cocoa to get the characteristics of both.

Sure, the recipe I listed earlier in the thread (adapted from Pierre Hermé and some traditional sources) uses a chocolate mixture that's 1/6 cocoa powder by weight.

But, golly... What would you call it?

Edited by Jaymes (log)

I don't understand why rappers have to hunch over while they stomp around the stage hollering.  It hurts my back to watch them. On the other hand, I've been thinking that perhaps I should start a rap group here at the Old Folks' Home.  Most of us already walk like that.

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Has anyone tried a hybrid of the two, where you use some chocolate and some cocoa powder? Kinda like when you make chocolate cake and you want to use chocolate and cocoa to get the characteristics of both.

Sure, the recipe I listed earlier in the thread (adapted from Pierre Hermé and some traditional sources) uses a chocolate mixture that's 1/6 cocoa powder by weight.

But, golly... What would you call it?

Hot mess?

Notes from the underbelly

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Just thought I'd share that I had an amazing hot chocolate at Minerva Chocolate (warning, naked lady covered in chocolate on website...may cause your boss to do a doubletake) in Bath. It was called dark hot chocolate, and I got the regular size. What came was actually quite a small cup, but its contents were thick and oh so chocolatey. Definitely not something I would get to refresh myself, but perfect as a mid-afternoon snack!

Actually, the whole shop is pretty damn enticing, because you can watch the staff making chocolates behind the counter. The place smells strongly of delicious chocolate. My parents tried the chocolate brownies and said they were divine, and I hear they do ice-cream too.

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I think it's just regional. Nobody would say that cocoa powder isn't "chocolate." Because clearly, without question, it is. When you make a hot drink with it, what you've got is a hot chocolate drink.

So the folks that call all hot drinks made with chocolate "hot chocolate," because that's regionally what they're accustomed to, and because regionally everybody else there calls it "hot chocolate" too and knows what they're talking about, are also literally correct.

And aren't about to change.

Or even, frankly, think it's worth a moment's consideration.

Well, really, nothing discussed around these parts is "worth a moment's consideration," but people certainly do manage! :smile:

I've noticed that, at least in North America, descriptively hot chocolate and hot cocoa are interchangeable terms, but prescriptively, cocoa and chocolate are different things, so if you know the difference and can use different terms, then why not be more precise? Of course, living in a country known for its attention to detail has made me appreciate that sort of thing, but it's not for everyone.

FWIW, where I live now, ホット チョコレート (transliterated as "hotto chokore-to) is made with chocolate (possibly in addition to cocoa, but chocolate is definitely the main ingredient), while ホット ココア ("hotto kokoa") is made with cocoa powder and no chocolate. When I first moved here, I would buy different brands of "cocoa" from vending machines, and I could never understand why they were so watered down and crappy tasting (other than because they were from vending machines). Finally figured it out a few years ago when the hot chocolate "boom" started.

Edited by prasantrin (log)
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I think it's just regional. Nobody would say that cocoa powder isn't "chocolate." Because clearly, without question, it is. When you make a hot drink with it, what you've got is a hot chocolate drink.

So the folks that call all hot drinks made with chocolate "hot chocolate," because that's regionally what they're accustomed to, and because regionally everybody else there calls it "hot chocolate" too and knows what they're talking about, are also literally correct.

And aren't about to change.

Or even, frankly, think it's worth a moment's consideration.

Well, really, nothing discussed around these parts is "worth a moment's consideration," but people certainly do manage! :smile:

So true. Most of this is pretty trivial, isn't it, in the overall scheme of things I mean. But it often engenders quite heated exchange. In this case, I feel pretty sure that people that call hot chocolate beverages made with cocoa powder "hot chocolate" happily will continue to do so (without a moment's consideration :biggrin: ) until somebody demonstrates that cocoa powder isn't chocolate.

Jenni, and others that choose to make this finite distinction for themselves, are clearly 100% correct - for themselves. I just don't think that they'll get very far trying to correct the rest of us for whom it's equally correct to call all hot chocolate beverages "hot chocolate." And I'd say that this conversation seems to bear that out.

One thing I've noticed in my 65 years of living and my 40 relocations all over the world is that, especially when it comes to regional slang and nomenclature, people don't like being told that the way they've all done it for years (and understand it perfectly well among themselves) is "wrong."

Edited by Jaymes (log)

I don't understand why rappers have to hunch over while they stomp around the stage hollering.  It hurts my back to watch them. On the other hand, I've been thinking that perhaps I should start a rap group here at the Old Folks' Home.  Most of us already walk like that.

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  • 2 weeks later...

The blog Cannelle et Vanille has a recipe for churros with spiced chocolate bisque based on Spanish hot chocolate and churros. It calls for eggs rather than cornstarch or some other thickener. I think the bisque looks deliciously rich, and would be worth a try in the "perfect hot chocolate" quest.

eta: it's more a custard than hot chocolate, but I think it's runnier than most custards, so could still pass as hot chocolate.

Edited by prasantrin (log)
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It would be interesting to do a blind taste test ... hot chocolate made with cocoa vs made with chocolate ... if you used similar quality chocolate and cocoa, and if you kept the fat percentage the same in each (say, by adding cream to the one made with cocoa).

I bet it would be harder than people assume, unless they're intimately acquainted with the flavor of the paricular chocolate or cocoa powder.

Notes from the underbelly

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  • 1 year later...

It's snowing here in Dallas. It's time to make some hot chocolate. I think I am going to go with a ganache style. And throw in a little instant espresso powder. Will use my stick blender to get it all mixed up, too.

Jeff Meeker, aka "jsmeeker"

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i personally love hot chocolate ( i blame france) but when i want something a lil' lighter this recipe does just great, especially with a good cocoa. i like e guittard cocoa rouge

2 cups powdered sugar

1 1/4 cup cocoa (Dutch-process preferred)

1 2/3 cups powdered milk

3/4 powdered creamer (can be flavored if you like)

1 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons cornstarch

1 pinch nutmeg and cinnamon

Hot water

*sift these ingredients together to get rid of lumps

Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl and incorporate evenly. In a small pot (or microwave), heat 4 to 6 cups of water.

you can also do this with warm milk or do 1/2 milk 1/2 water, whatever you'd like, but the powdered milk and creamer should make for a creamy drink

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  • 9 years later...

I just finished three cups of hot chocolate made with milk and Rancho Gordo Xoxoc chocolate (70%).  Rancho Gordo chocolate comes in cakes that are hard as rocks.  No appliance in my kitchen had been able to make a dent in them.  Nor would they melt.

 

But I have a new blender!  Will it blend?  Following the Rancho Gordo recipe I used two cups of milk to one cake brick of chocolate.  The poor machine sustained an overload condition twice, but eventually after two soup cycles I obtained the smoothest, most delicious steaming hot chocolate I have made.  Perfect sweetness with no added sugar.

 

And I now feel like an Aztec sacrifice.

 

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Cooking is cool.  And kitchen gear is even cooler.  -- Chad Ward

 

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1 hour ago, JoNorvelleWalker said:

I just finished three cups of hot chocolate made with milk and Rancho Gordo Xoxoc chocolate (70%).  Rancho Gordo chocolate comes in cakes that are hard as rocks.  No appliance in my kitchen had been able to make a dent in them.  Nor would they melt.

 

My experience with other of the discs from Mexico is that they can be treated like piloncillo. Best grated 

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If you were foolish enough to consider exploring how to make a pink hot chocolate, how would you go about it?  Use Ruby chocolate, ground up? A touch of powdered color in a Ghiradelli white cocoa mix?  I haven't tasted the ruby chocolate to know if it's any good or not, so this could be a fool's errand.

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I’d go with your regular hot chocolate recipe and add pink marshmallows. I don’t care for the taste of the Ruby chocolate - tastes somewhat red fruity and acidic. But my taste in chocolate is more Valrhona Caribe or Jivara.

Edited by curls (log)
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13 minutes ago, curls said:

Hmm... maybe I should reconsider! I like blue_dolphin's idea of a raspberry hot chocolate with Chambord.  🙂  Still, make mine with dark chocolate.  😉

Oh yes with raspberry has to be very dark. A great brownie combo as well.

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4 hours ago, JeanneCake said:

If you were foolish enough to consider exploring how to make a pink hot chocolate, how would you go about it?  Use Ruby chocolate, ground up? A touch of powdered color in a Ghiradelli white cocoa mix?  I haven't tasted the ruby chocolate to know if it's any good or not, so this could be a fool's errand.

 

Add a bit of beet.  Seriously, I have made Nigel Slater's chocolate beet cake, the flavors go well together.

 

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Cooking is cool.  And kitchen gear is even cooler.  -- Chad Ward

 

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I've also had a chocolate cake with beets as an ingredient (I don't think it was Nigel Slater's recipe). I couldn't really detect the beet flavor, but could see small pieces of beet in the cake. Point is: the beets will, at least, do no harm.

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39 minutes ago, MokaPot said:

I've also had a chocolate cake with beets as an ingredient (I don't think it was Nigel Slater's recipe). I couldn't really detect the beet flavor, but could see small pieces of beet in the cake. Point is: the beets will, at least, do no harm.

How I grew up thinking "real" red velvet cak was made  https://www.southernliving.com/recipes/beet-red-velvet-cupcakes-recipe

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16 hours ago, JeanneCake said:

If you were foolish enough to consider exploring how to make a pink hot chocolate, how would you go about it?  Use Ruby chocolate, ground up? A touch of powdered color in a Ghiradelli white cocoa mix?  I haven't tasted the ruby chocolate to know if it's any good or not, so this could be a fool's errand.

 

You could go the Hermé way (raspberry + rose):

- make a thin outer shell with Valrhona's Raspberry Inspiration (you can mix it with some white chocolate, to make it a paler pink and save on costs);

- add a second layer of dark chocolate to the sphere, because yes dark chocolate for hot chocolate;

- include rose-flavored marshmallows inside the sphere.

Do it with heart shaped molds, instead of spheres, and you are game for the 14th February. You can start producing at the beginning of January if you like your bed and you bank account.

 

 

 

Teo

 

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Teo

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