To Stay Warm Get Hot for Chocolate

IMUSA‘s chef team, who represent some of the best Latin chefs in America, suggest that hot chocolate is a great help to deal with the coming cold “when you feel that chill in the air, it’s time for Mexican hot chocolate, a new twist on a traditional winter favorite.”

IMUSA’s chef team is comprised of food TV star and cookbook author George Duran, a native of Venezuela and author of “Take This Dish and Twist It”; Elsie Ramos, a finalist on Gordon Ramsey’s “Hell’s Kitchen,” and author of “Elsie’s Turkey Tacos and Arroz con Pollo”; and Ana Quincoces, who is of Cuban descent and has authored two successful cookbooks: “Cuban Chicks Can Cook,” and “Sabor! A Passion for Cuban Cuisine.”

According to Chef Duran, “To make hot chocolate like a Mexican grandmother makes it, you need to have a molinillo [moh-lee-NEE-oh] and use Mexican chocolate such as Abuelita or Ibarra. IMUSA’s molinillo is made of ‘turned’ wood and can be used to froth any warm drink. Add authenticity by cooking this hot chocolate in IMUSA’s Chocolatera, a 2-liter aluminum pot, uniquely designed with handles that provide for safe and easy carrying.”

Having a layer of foam on hot chocolate is the key to this drink. Legend has it that the spirit of the drink is in the foam.

Mexican Hot Chocolate

6 cups milk
1/2 cup granulated sugar
3 ounces unsweetened Mexican Chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 t. ground cinnamon
2 eggs
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
Stick cinnamon (for optional garnish)
Salt to taste

In a large saucepan, combine milk, sugar, chocolate, ground cinnamon, and salt. Heat, stirring constantly, until the chocolate has melted and the milk is very hot. (Do not let the milk come to a boil.)

Beat 2 eggs in a bowl. Stir in one cup of the hot mixture into the eggs, return this mixture to the saucepan. Cook 2 to 3 minutes more over low heat, still stirring. Add vanilla. Immerse the IMUSA Molinillo in the liquid chocolate as it cooks. Rub the handle rapidly between your palms. Watch the foam rise.

Pour into mugs, garnish with cinnamon sticks, and serve.

Imusa Chocolatera and Molinillo

More warming recipes from the IMUSA chefs are available at http://www.imusausa.com. The website offers a warm winter oasis of recipes including Chef Duran’s Spicy Mexican Hot Chocolate Fondue, Chef Quincoces’ Black and White Fondue and a delicious and warming Mocha Espresso from Chef Ramos.