Advent Calendar Day 15

Advent Calendar Day 15

Welcome to my 2017 advent calendar! Each day, I’ll have something new and special here for you. Some of the treats might be good for one day only–like a free book on Amazon!–and others will be more mundane blog entries like Christmas recipes. I’d recommend coming back each day so you don’t miss out on anything.

Now what’s behind door number fifteen…?

The Ultimate Hot Chocolate Recipe

Did you know that hot cocoa and hot chocolate are not the same thing? It’s true! Hot cocoa uses powdered cocoa which has had the cocoa butter removed, leaving the dark, granular chocolate solids behind. Hot chocolate, on the hand, uses whole chocolate, which includes the cocoa as well as the rich and creamy cocoa butter. It can be made with dark, semisweet, or bittersweet chocolate, depending on your taste preferences. This recipe uses both bittersweet chocolate as well as cocoa, for extra chocolate-y goodness.


1 teaspoon cornstarch
2 pinches of salt
2 cups half-and-half or 1 cup whole milk plus 1 cup heavy cream
6 ounces bittersweet (60% cacao) chocolate, broken into small pieces or chopped
2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract


  1. Whisk together the cornstarch and salt, and whisk in the milk and cream until cornstarch is dissolved.
  2. Bring the mixture just to a boil over medium heat, whisking constantly, then reduce the heat and slowly simmer it, whisking frequently, 1 minute.
  3. Remove the pan from the heat and add the chocolate. Let it rest for 1 minute, then whisk the mixture until chocolate is melted and liquid is smooth.
  4. Whisk in the cocoa and the vanilla, and if necessary, reheat it over medium-low heat until hot.


Come back tomorrow for the next reveal in the advent calendar!