By now, we’ve all met our quota of eggnog, peppermint, and pumpkin-spice inspired hot chocolate (not to mention a lifetime supply of plain cocoa), but we still need something sweet to warm us up on a wintery night.
I’ve got a soft spot for white hot chocolate, which is as comforting as a glass of hot milk can be, but equally snooze-inducing.
To mix things up, I decided to caramelize the white chocolate beforehand. The result was a creamy, nutty, butterscotchy “Hot Chocolate” perfect for sipping.
The basic recipe’s as simple as 1-2-3 (the ratio of ingredients), but you can doctor it with milk or cream to adjust the richness depending on whether you’re enjoying for dessert or as an afternoon pick-me-up.
Caramelized White Chocolate "Hot Chocolate"
4 ounces white chocolate
6 ounces milk
2 ounces cream
Vanilla bean, optional
Cinnamon stick, optional
Salt, to taste
Preheat the oven to 300°F and put the white chocolate in a glass or ceramic baking dish. No need to chop. Toss it in the oven and roast, stirring every 10 minutes or so. The white chocolate will be lumpy and crumbly, but that’s okay. Keep going until it takes on a peanut butter-like color, about 30 minutes total.
Meanwhile, bring the milk and cream to a simmer in a small pot. If you like, toss in a vanilla bean or cinnamon stick to add another layer of flavor.
When the white chocolate comes out of the oven, scrape it into the hot milk-mixture and whisk until smooth. Season with a pinch of salt.
Ladle into mugs and enjoy.