If you’re like me, you get to a point when you just need a moment during the winter months where you can just sit back and feel cozy. I love bundling up and watching snow fall (especially at the beach!), but sometimes, I need a little escape from the cold. I decided that now would be the perfect time for a luxe, chocolaty pick-me-up to relax and recharge.
My Cognac Hot Chocolate is a rich, layered and complex version of traditional hot chocolate, but with a little kick, courtesy of the addition of cognac. Far from the hot chocolate of your childhood, this treat is sophisticated and worthy of a few quiet moments to sit, enjoy and stay warm indoors. Cheers!
Ingredients (serves 6)
Whole Milk – 3 cups
Half-and-Half – 2 cups
Milk Chocolate – 5 ounces, rough chopped
Dark Chocolate – 8 ounces, 72% cacao, rough chopped
Cocoa Powder – ¼ cup, unsweetened, Pernigotti recommended
Cinnamon – ¼ teaspoon
Fleur de Sel – ¼ teaspoon
Dark Brown Sugar – 2 tablespoons, lightly packed
Vanilla – 1 ½ teaspoons, pure extract
Salted Caramel Sauce – 4 tablespoons, favorite store-bought brand
Cognac – 1 cup, Rémy Martin 1738 recommended
Cinnamon Sticks – for stirrers and garnish (if desired)
In a large saucepan set over medium heat, add the milk and half-and-half. Heat to just below the simmering point.
Remove the pan from the heat and add all of the remaining ingredients, except the cinnamon sticks.
Using a whisk, vigorously whisk the mixture until it is smooth and the chocolate is completely melted.
Gently reheat over medium heat, ladle into mugs and garnish with a cinnamon stick, a bit of frothed milk or whipped cream (if desired).
Tip: You can prepare the hot chocolate up to five days in advance and store it in an airtight container with a piece of plastic wrap pressed against the top of the hot chocolate and set in the refrigerator. The plastic wrap will help prevent a skin from forming on the top of the hot chocolate.