I realized a while back that all of the hot chocolate we had in the house contained trans fats, so I tossed it all in the trash. Now that the weather’s gotten cold, I set out to make my own cocoa mix but the vast majority of recipes contain powdered milk, which I don’t have on hand at the moment and don’t feel like buying. And I always have milk in the fridge so I didn’t need an instant mix that only required hot water. I managed to find this Martha Stewart mix which has turned out to be quite good – especially with half of a Trader Joe’s peppermint marshmallow (a whole one makes the drink too sweet). I used cocoa powder that I already had on hand, but I will be keeping an eye out for fair trade cocoa powder. (I’m not buying non-fair trade chocolate, but I am using up what I already had.)
Homemade Hot Chocolate
Makes 5 3/4 cups dry mix or 92 eight-ounce servings
3 1/2 cups sugar
2 1/4 cups cocoa
1 tablespoon table salt
Whole milk for serving
1. In a large bowl, combine sugar, cocoa, and salt, and whisk to combine well. Store the mixture in an airtight container.
2. For individual servings, pour 1 cup whole milk into a microwave-safe mug, and microwave on high just until hot. Add 2 tablespoons of cocoa mix, and stir to dissolve. For a larger batch of cocoa, warm the milk in a saucepan set over medium-low heat, taking care not to let the milk boil; as it warms, stir in 2 tablespoons of mix for each cup of milk.
1. I figured superfine sugar would dissolve better, but I didn’t have any, so I pureed regular sugar in my electric food mill, then added the cocoa and salt. (Pureeing the cocoa broke up those little clumps.)
2. To make the cocoa, I fill a mug 3/4 of the way with 1% or nonfat milk (about 6 oz.), and microwave on high for one minute. Then I stir in two tablespoons of cocoa mix, top with half a Trader Joe’s peppermint marshmallow, and microwave for another 30 seconds. This makes the hot chocolate frothy and helps make the marshmallow melty.