The first thing that comes to my mind whenever I think of hot chocolate is its creaminess, but I was surprised to see that that chocolate was completely liquid and not as thick as the one I am used to drink here.
For this reason, I decided to do a little experiment: I googled "hot chocolate" (in English) and looked at the photos. All of them were showing a liquid hot chocolate. Right after that I googled "cioccolata calda" and what I saw in those photos was the typical hot chocolate that I grew up drinking.
I finally realized that what is known as hot chocolate in English speaking countries is different than the one we make in Italy. The one we make here is creamy, and that's probably one of the things I love the most about it.
In this instructable I am going to show you how to make the typical hot chocolate made in Italy. It's very easy and fast to make, and very similar to the American recipe, except for one simple ingredient that makes the difference! :)
Note: I've been reading that many of you think that this is pudding. Pudding is thicker than this hot chocolate. It may look much thicker because it took me a while to take photos and the chocolate stabilized during that time. Please check out "cioccolata calda" here so you can see that it is NOT pudding!
Step 1: Ingredients
- 2 tsp of cocoa powder
- 2 tsp of sugar
- 1 tsp of potato starch (or corn starch)
- 125ml (1/2 cup) of milk
Step 2: Make the Mix
You can put more/less sugar depending on your taste. 2 teaspoons were enough for me since I don't like it too sweet.
The potato starch (or corn starch) is the secret ingredient! That will make the difference because instead of remaining liquid, the chocolate will thicken thanks to the starch.
Mix all these ingredients together trying to remove all possible lumps.
Step 3: Add the Milk
When the cream looks smooth, add the rest of the milk and mix everything together.
The mix is ready to be heated :)
Step 4: Heat It!
After a few minutes the liquid will become hot enough to thicken by itself. You can notice that the color of the chocolate will become darker too.
As soon as you feel that it's getting thick, turn the stove off.
It doesn't need to be really thick, it can be halfway between liquid and thick, which is the way it's usually done...that is up to you anyway!
Your hot chocolate is ready!
Remember: the more you leave it on the stove, the thicker it will get. So it's better to remove it from the stove immediately, even if the chocolate doesn't seem thick enough. It is so hot that it will continue to warm up for a while without being heated so it will get thicker when you pour it in a cup.
Enjoy it!! :)