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Monday, December 22, 2008

Candy Canes and Hot Cocoa

Every year when my children and I decorate the Christmas tree we have a favorite tradition of pizza and hot chocolate. I usually go to Papa Murphy's (weather permitting) and pick out a 4-for all pizza, soda, and cookie dough. While the good are baking we put up the tree and decorations and then eat. Afterwards when it's all quiet and we're admiring out beautiful work I break out the homemade hot cocoa in warm cups and give out the candy canes to hang on the tree. We each get a candy cane to stir out hot cocoa with. It's delicious!

Here is how I make my cocoa:

1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (I prefer Gherideli)
3/4 cup white sugar
1 pinch salt
3 1/2 cups milk
3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
dash of cinnamon
1/4 cup real whipping cream (not the kind you put on top of cake, the real kind in a carton)

Mix sugar, cocoa, vanilla, cinnamon, salt, and 1/4 cup of the milk into a 2-quart sauce pan. let it come to a rolling boil while constantly stirring. Slowly add the rest of the milk while stirring and then when all mixed add the cream.

Serve topped with whipping cream and either powdered cocoa or cinnamon on top. I've been known to replace cream with french roast coffee for the adults.

MMMM yummmm...
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