Healthy Life: Homemade Hot Cocoa
by Valerie B. Lull
Here we are in November and things are beginning to get cold. On a cold day there is nothing like a warm cup of cocoa to cast off the chill.
I remember as a child, before there were commercially available cocoa mixes in individual packets, my family made the most delicious hot cocoa from scratch. We would go out caroling and when we got back there was the delicious cocoa to warm you up.
During the time between Christmas and New Year's, while you are enjoying all your new gifts, perhaps a good cup of old-fashioned cocoa is just what you need to hit the spot.
Cocoa has health benefits as well as having the ability to bring on a soothing, feel-good mood. Chocolate has magnesium, polyphenols and antioxidants. I have decided to devote this column to recipes for homemade cocoa. So here goes.
Regular Homemade Cocoa
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
3/4 cup sugar
1 pinch of salt
1/3 cup boiling water
3 1/2 cups milk
3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup half and half
Combine cocoa, sugar and salt in a saucepan. Blend in boiling water. Bring to a boil. Simmer and stir for ab out 2 minutes. Stir in 3 1/2 cups milk and heat till hot. Remove from heat and add vanilla. Add half and half to cool cocoa to drinking temperature
Sugar and Milk Free Cocoa
Unsweetened almond milk
Unsweetened cocoa powder
Dairy-free semisweet or dark chocolate
Raw sugar, or sweetener of choice
Mix ingredients in amounts of your choosing and warm up in the microwave or use a saucepan on the stove. Cool and enjoy.
There are many flavorings you can add to your cocoa. Some people add peppermint extract or a peppermint stick. Vanilla is another favorite. Some folks like marshmallows. My favorite is a cinnamon stick.
I would like to take this opportunity to wish everyone a happy holiday season.
About the Author
Valerie B. Lull, author of Ten Healthy Teas, is an herbalist and wellness coach. At the age of 45 she was diagnosed with Diabetes and staying in good health became her passion. She studied at the American College of Healthcare Sciences in Portland, Oregon.
Valerie has always had a passion for staying healthy and for the health benefits of teas and the various ways they can be prepared. Valerie’s passion for tea started in childhood, when she experienced a traditional-style teatime with her Canadian relatives.
Valerie’s new book, Glorious Garlic! is now on Amazon. Check it out.
You can read her “Healthy Life” column on the 4th Monday each month here at Mustard Seed Sentinel.