I made this during my recent hike in the Peak District whilst sheltered from the elements in a shooting hut which offers a grand view of the moors. Never was a cup of hot chocolate more welcome as I sat there listening to the wind outside taking in the peace. The basis of this drink is high quality barista-style 'Very Dark' drinking chocolate from @theeastindiacompany - perfectly fine on its own, not sickly sweet like some drinking chocolates tend to be. So, if you like your hot chocolate more on the darker side, like I do, then you'll enjoy this recipe with a few of my own additions.
Note: If you're going for a 'Dry January', without the rum, this still tastes great:
6 tbsp (40g) The East India Company Very Dark Drinking Chocolate Flakes
470ml full fat milk
40g dark chocolate, chopped (I chose 54% single origin Dominican Republic dark milk chocolate), plus extra for grating
2 (or 3) tbsp dark rum
1 tbsp hazelnut syrup
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon, plus extra for sprinkling
1 tbsp chopped toasted hazelnuts
1 toasting marshmallow
Makes 1 large cup or 2 medium-sized cups.
Put the drinking chocolate into a small pan. Pour in 1/4 cup (about 60ml) of milk and whisk until the chocolate flakes are well combined. Place the pan over a low to medium heat and pour in the rest of the milk, whisking all the time.
Add the cinnamon, chopped dark chocolate and hazelnut syrup and continue to whisk. Continue to heat for a few minutes until the hot chocolate looks thick and frothy, but do not boil. Add the rum at the last minute.
Pour the hot chocolate into a cup then top with finely grated chocolate, a touch of ground cinnamon, chopped toasted hazelnuts and a toasted marshmallow. A proper winter warmer. Dark, not too intense, but soothing and mellow.