I ♥ Hot Chocolate
Today, an ode to hot chocolate – a sweet treat popular around the world and available everywhere: from fancy restaurants to vending machines, concession stands to the comfort of your own home.
Hot Chocolate History
The Spanish Conquistador Cortez of Mexico had a goblet of hot chocolate every day – but it was actually a cold drink.
The Aztec Emperor Montezuma introduced it to him – it was bitter and frothy and the ‘hot’ was not its temperature, but the chili peppers.
During Montezuma’s time, Xocolatl was associated with the goddess of fertility Xochiquetzal and many people still consider it an aphrodisiac today.
Hot Hot Hot
Press play below for the perfect soundtrack to this article: “You Sexy Thing” by, you guessed it, British disco sensations Hot Chocolate:
Hot Chocolate Arrives In Europe
Cortez brought the drink to Europe, and Spaniards started heating up a sweetened version and that’s the hot chocolate we know today. Chocolate became very popular with the upper classes.
It was also very expensive, because it had to be shipped over from South America.
What’s the Difference Between Hot Chocolate and Cocoa?
While often used interchangeably, hot chocolate is made from solid chocolate and cocoa is made from powder.
Hot Chocolate Around the World
Today, Mexican hot chocolate is now also served hot instead of cold and given some heat with cinnamon instead of chili peppers.
In Italy and Spain, corn starch is added to hot chocolate to make it thicker.
Here is a video of Jacque Torres, also known as Mr. Chocolate, sharing how to make the best hot chocolate ever. (Although, he is actually using chocolate powder so now that we are experts, we know he is really making cocoa.)
In North America, many of us prefer our hot chocolate with marshmallows or whipped cream. When we get really fancy, we add a dusting of chocolate powder, shavings, or sprinkles. Some adults even like to spike their hot chocolate with an Irish Creme or coffee flavored liqueur.
Generally our ‘hot chocolate’ comes from a can, so it’s proper name is cocoa. However, hot chocolate is definitely one of my concession obsessions. There is nothing better than a cup of hot cocoa when you buy it from a concession at an ice rink or outdoor event on a chilly day.