Italian hot chocolate is a copycat recipe of the dense and thick hot chocolates one can order in Italy’s bars. It’s a perfect winter and Valentine’s Day beverage!
Originally published March 22, 2012.
A few years ago, Starbucks had a futile attempt to recreate the deliciously thick Italian style hot chocolate concoction.
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Of course, my curiosity got the best of me and I had to try it, fully knowing that it was going to be a let down. (Why did I do that?) It is no longer on their menu–I rest my case.
What is Italian Hot Chocolate?
Back in Italy, I had tasted a thick, heavenly delight of dark, chocolatey goodness in a cup. Those of you who have been privileged enough to have tried the thick, pudding-like hot chocolate which is served in bars in Italy, do know what I’m talking about. The beverage is more of a dessert/treat than just a cup of regular hot chocolate.
In Italy, ask for Cioccolata Calda Densa
If you’re traveling in Italy and would like to try this rich chocolate beverage then just go into any bar and ask for cioccolata calda densa. This Ciobar product is what I’ve actually been served, so you can buy it, but this homemade version will be less expensive.
Truthfully, I wanted my Italian hot chocolate geared more for adults who are usually a bit more calorie-conscious. Let’s face it, who wants to drink a cup of heavy whipping cream (okay, I’d love to, but that’s not the point). Here’s a link to the puffin mugs since so many of you ask about it! :)
So, the other day when it was raining, I decided to make a homemade version of this thick Italian hot chocolate; albeit a bit less thick than the original Italian beverage (which I think is a bit too thick).
If you love the Italian Deruta cup with heart shaped saucer, you can order this and so many other beautiful, handmade products at Ceramiche Sberna. They ship so quickly you’ll be delighted (especially since they offer free shipping if you spend over a certain amount).
Let’s say that I’m very pleased with the outcome, and I think you will be too. Moreover, as long as you use good quality cocoa and chocolate, you can’t go wrong.
Italian Hot Chocolate Recipe
Inspired by Ciobar hot chocolate mix. makes 1 serving
FULL PRINTABLE RECIPE BELOW
- good quality unsweetened cocoa, like Perugina or Barry (do not use Hershey’s)
- whole milk
- good quality dark or bittersweet chocolate, broken into small pieces, like Perugina or Callebaut
- corn starch
Put the cocoa into a small pot (off the cooktop) and add about a tablespoon or two of the milk to whisk into a paste, then add the remaining milk and continue whisking. I use this mini-whisk from OXO as it’s perfect for jobs like this.
Place the pot over medium heat and continue to whisk; add the broken chocolate. Keep whisking until the chocolate has melted.
Next, add the sugar and stir.
Continue to whisk the mixture while adding the corn starch, before the hot chocolate comes to a boil. Turn up the heat and whisk briskly to keep the mixture smooth. As soon as it comes to a boil, remove from the heat and pour into a cup or mug. Serve immediately in a beautiful cup and saucer, like this thistle design!
Making it for your kids? Serve them a smaller portion in an espresso cup!
It’s a perfectly sized portion for children, in my humble opinion.
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- 2 Tbsp good quality unsweetened cocoa powder
- 6 oz (3/4 cup) whole milk
- 1 oz dark or bittersweet chocolate, broken into small pieces
- 1 to 2 tsp sugar (more or less, to taste)
- 1 tsp corn starch
- Put the cocoa into a small pot (off the cooktop) and add about a tablespoon or two of the milk to whisk into a paste, then add the remaining milk and continue whisking. I use this mini-whisk from OXO as it's perfect for jobs like this.
- Place the pot over medium heat and continue to whisk; add the broken chocolate. Keep whisking until the chocolate has melted.
- Next, add the sugar and stir.
- Continue to whisk the mixture while adding the corn starch, before the hot chocolate comes to a boil.
- Turn up the heat and whisk briskly to keep the mixture smooth. As soon as it comes to a boil, remove from the heat and pour into a mug. Serve immediately.
Adjust the sugar to your liking and add more or less corn starch to suit your degree of how thick the hot chocolate is.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 1 Serving Size: 6 oz
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 361Total Fat: 22gSaturated Fat: 13gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 19mgSodium: 86mgCarbohydrates: 29gFiber: 7gSugar: 14gProtein: 12g
Nutrition information is only estimated.
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