There are several traditional foods that are served on Dia del los Muertos, and I'll be posting the ones I made in the next few days. The first one I'm posting is because of popular demand. Seriously, everyone who was here today wanted the recipe, so ... Sonia, Melanie, Elli, Lisa, and Esther, this is for y'all!!
Mexican Hot Chocolate
2 c boiling water
1 chile pepper, stem and seeds removed (or 1 t cayenne pepper)
4 c milk
1 c cream*
1 vanilla bean, split**
1-2 cinnamon sticks, halved
8 oz bittersweet chocolate***
2 T sugar
In a small saucepan, add chile or pepper to water and reduce to a quick simmer. Reduce to 1 cup of liquid and strain and discard the solids, reserving the liquid.
Over low heat in a larger saucepan, combine the milk and cream, vanilla bean, and cinnamon sticks, stirring frequently for 20 minutes. DO NOT BOIL!! Add the chocolate and cinnamon, stirring with a whisk until the chocolate has completely melted. Remove the cinnamon and vanilla and turn off the heat. Add the chile-infused water little by little, according to taste.
Serve immediately (this drink separates and settles very quickly) with whipped cream on top. Enjoy!
*I use 5 cups of 2% milk. I mean, seriously, it's already a pretty rich drink without the cream.
**If you cheat
***I found a dark chocolate that was in between semi-sweet and bitter sweet. I think it had 64% cocoa? Anyway, it tasted great, and I didn't have to add any of the sugar. And let's talk chocolate for a minute. If you buy a cheapo chocolate, your drink will taste like it has a cheapo chocolate in it. For a recipe like this, splurge, and buy the good stuff. You'll thank me, I promise.
****Don't make me come over there