I love The Holidays. This is my favourite time of year for so many reasons. I know that it is fraught with issues (like good old commercialism, etc.) but I love the sparkle and coziness of our winter months. I love gift giving and I love the food that all the world’s celebrations and festivals bring to light. For the most part, I’m a traditionalist. I celebrate secular Christmas and the treats are fairly typical but one less obvious or traditional flavour combination I adore is chocolate and gingerbread together. A few years ago I worked out a recipe for Chocolate Gingerbread Crackles after seeing a recipe for a chocolate gingerbread cake by Nigella. So when the team at Moscow Muled reached out with a pair of their copper mugs I was so excited to make a festive drink for the season. I pondered doing a twist on the traditional mule (vodka, lime, gingerbeer) but I knew these beautiful copper mugs (which feature in our Gift Guide) would be perfect for a very special hot chocolate.
Before I get to the ridiculously easy recipe for this Gingerbread Hot Chocolate, let me tell you more about these gorgeous cups. I had the pleasure of speaking with Jessica of Moscow Muled and it was delightful to hear so much passion and energy coming from a spirited entrepreneur. Moscow Muled copper mugs are 100% copper, hand made, and from my beloved hometown of Vancouver, Canada. Moscow Mule style cups are hot right now and they are easy to find in stores and online, but if you are in the market for them for yourself or as Holiday gifts for the foodies and entertainers on your list, I really do recommend you connect with Moscow Muled and buy their mugs. The quality is absolutely gorgeous and they are head and shoulders better than the ones I bought a few years ago (Moscow Mules are a great tipple to sip while you wrap gifts, I find). On top of being well made and beautiful in hand, these mugs are all for a good cause! Moscow Muled donates 15% of all profits to multiple non-profit organizations committed to preventing and stopping impaired driving – a really worthy cause and one that is extra important during the holidays when people are indulging and out on the town. Why not get a pair of these gorgeous copper mugs for yourself or someone on your gift list?
Now, for the Gingerbread Hot Chocolate! I love the old fashioned, “old world” flavours of gingerbread and obviously I love chocolate! This drink is rich and warm, a decadent indulgence. I’m not personally a fan of marshmallows in hot chocolate – I find them too sweet and rubbery. Instead of marshmallow, I opted here for toasted meringue. If you adore the traditional marshmallow, go for it, but this sweet and toasty meringue is an unexpected and grown up surprise.
In a sauce pan, whisk together the following:
1/2 C cocoa (unsweetened)
1/2 C icing sugar
1 Tbsp ground ginger
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp allspice
Add to the sugar and spice mix:
3 cups of milk
1 tsp vanilla
Add the milk and vanilla slowly, whisking thoroughly between additions for a smooth hot chocolate (cocoa likes to clump)
Heat over medium heat until simmering. Pour into cups.
With an electric mixer, beat 2 egg whites with 2 Tbsp of sugar until the egg whites stand with firm peaks. Scoop the meringue onto the top of the hot chocolates and toast with a kitchen torch. Serve immediately.
makes 2 of these large Moscow Mule mugs or 4 in smaller mugs