The Messiest, Most Delicious S’mores Hot Chocolate

We’re bringing a night in front of the campfire indoors for this one. The simplicity of roasting s’mores over a fire is one of my favorite things about summer time. I also love hot chocolate (who doesn’t?), so I came up with something that I think captures the essence of that classic treat but in a breakfast-y drink form.

S'mores Hot Chocolate

It turned out pretty gooey and messy, and so I ended up with “The Messiest, Most Delicious S’mores Hot Chocolate.” Prepare your sweet tooth for this heaping cup of marshmallowy chocolate. Of course, simply putting marshmallows over hot chocolate and letting them melt isn’t enough to elicit that campfire feeling, so I used a marshmallow “roasting” method in the kitchen that I think worked out well.

This decadent drink has all the fix-ins of a traditional s’more. The graham cracker crumbs, roasted marshies and chocolate mix together for a sweet, rich drink that’ll feel reminiscent of those good times roughing it out in the woods (except you’ll be at home under a blanket).

S'mores Hot Chocolate

This recipe makes two cups of hot chocolate. The amount of marshmallows used are meant to be split between two cups, or you know, you can make one giant mug for yourself. 😉

The Messiest, Most Delicious S’mores Hot Chocolate

2 cups whole milk

60 g Symphony Bar milk chocolate (or 1/2 a standard-sized candy bar)

1 heaping tsp cocoa powder (unsweetened)

1 tsp Nutella or other chocolate hazelnut spread

About 10 large marshmallows (more or less depending on your preference)

About 4 graham cracker squares

Chocolate Syrup

Caramel Sauce

Crush the graham crackers into fine crumbs using a rolling pin and bunch them up in a nice, large pile. Prepare your mugs by pouring a bit of chocolate syrup on a plate and dipping the rim of each mug into the chocolate. Then, dip the rim of the mugs again into the crushed graham crackers.

In a medium-sized pot, pour the milk over medium-low heat and add the Symphony Bar, cocoa powder and Nutella. Whisk until everything has melted. Be sure the milk does not get too hot.

Let the hot chocolate sit at low heat while you prepare the “roasted marshmallows.” Set your oven to broil-high, and place the marshmallows on a foil-lined baking sheet. Put them in the oven and watch very closely. The marshmallows will start to roast quickly. Take them out when they’ve reached your preferred level of toastiness. I took mine out after about 1 1/2 to 2 min.

Carefully pour the hot chocolate into each mug, followed with the roasted marshmallows. Sprinkle some of the extra graham cracker crumbs over the top and generously drizzle with caramel and chocolate sauce. Happy sipping!

S'mores Hot Chocolate

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A Brief Guide to Loose Leaf Tea

It’s no secret that I am an avid tea drinker. There is something inherently good about sitting down to have a cup of hot tea, feeling the warm mug in your hands as the aroma of steeping leaves drifts into the open air. Sipping tea while reading a good book, working on a creative project or doing something you love really enlivens the soul, I think. With a few deep breaths and an atmosphere that comforts you, it can calm the nerves and bring you to a place that feels truly peaceful. And it certainly helps that drinking tea has quite a lot of health benefits.

A Brief Guide to Loose Leaf Tea

Steeping the Tea

If you want to make yourself a pot or a cup of loose leaf tea at home, you’ll need some sort of mesh tea infuser, either one that fits into your tea pot like a cup or a little ball that opens up for individual steeping. Different temperatures are preferred for different teas, but about 175° is optimal. You can find infusers really easily at places like World Market or Teavana. Black and oolong steep better at just slightly higher temperatures, around 195-200°. Heat up your water on the stove, pour it over the leaves into your cup or pot, wait about five minutes and take the tea leaves out. As a general rule of thumb, for every eight ounces of water, use one teaspoon for green, black and oolong tea and one and a half teaspoons for white.

Tea

Common Tea Types

Green

Green tea has a deep earthy flavor and is slightly bitter, but completely refreshing. Chalk full of antioxidants, it is also one of the healthiest, most beneficial teas out there. Add a teaspoon of honey to your drink if the taste of straight tea is too bitter for your liking, but you may grow to love the taste of tea alone (you totally will).

Oolong

Oolong has a smooth, soothing taste with only a mild bitterness. It’s like a huge breath of fresh air. Depending on the variety, oolong teas can have slightly fruity, flowery or earthy tastes and aromas. They mix well with almost any other flavor. Oolong is probably my favorite type of tea, with green tea in close second. It’s known for its benefits to skin, teeth and heart health.

White

Sweeter and more delicate in its flavor, white tea is a perfect match for fruity or flowery additions like peach, acaĂ­ berry or lavender. Also rich in antioxidants, white teas are known to help reduce fevers and help treat various skin ailments.

Black

This tea has a harsher, bitter flavor but is the perfect pick-me-up when in need of some energy, which is why many people drink black tea in the morning. The amount of caffeine in black tea is just enough to promote healthy blood flow to the brain without overexerting your heart.

If you’re looking for a tea variety without the caffeine, herbal tea can be a great way to go. The perfect drink to enjoy in the morning and at bed time, herbal tea has a more subtle quality to it and can really be made from basically any kind of herb or edible flower.

I am in love with mugs and have this odd attachment to the ones that I own, so I just have to add that teas (and coffees) taste so much better when they’re in big, cozy mugs. Being cozy is the best. Who doesn’t like that? Also, I will shamelessly promote enjoying your tea and buying it looseleaf from The Scented Leaf Tea House + Lounge if you happen to be in Tucson, Arizona. Happy sipping.Â đŸ”