Winter Warmth

Don’t know if it’s the

upcoming holiday of

l~o~v~e  or

a recent viewing of,

‘Chocolat,’  a film favorite

 but I’m craving

chocolate, hot Chocolate and not just

any hot chocolate. This batch, is made from

3 ounces of unrefined Dark

Spanish Chocolate

roughly chopped and a cup of

 whole milk, infused with

Star Anise, that

shapely, licorice tasting pod.

Adore anything, with that licorice/fennel flavor.

To give this drink a bit of heat

I added touch of

Thai chile. ONE small dried chile,


 I wasn’t after a HOT, hot chocolate, just a

hint of warmth on a

winter day.

 Bring the milk, star anise and

small, whole dried Thai chile to a simmer, let it all

mingle for a bit (a few minutes, the longer, the hotter as in spice…so go easy!) and then

strain out the spices. Turn down the heat and whisk in

the chopped dark chocolate until it melts.

 Top the

hot chocolate with a generous dollop of

vanilla and

tangy Meyer lemon zest,

whipped cream, sweetened with

a tablespoon or so of sugar. I like

confectioners sugar but you can use

granulated if you prefer.

 That little kick of

warmth, hint of sweet

licorice and the tangy freshness of the

Meyer lemon zest…SO good. Spike it with

a little vodka (vanilla vodka would be nice) and you have a

delicious, adult

dessert.  I call it,

Cupid in a

cup…just in time for

Valentine’s Day,

the holiday of


Double the recipe if you

have company.

Hated it,