GINGERBREAD HOT CHOCOLATE WITH VANILLA MARSHMALLOWS

Author:Samina Patel


‘Tis the Season to be jolly. December is a month of festivities with Christmas and New Year upon us and the celebrations in full swing. It’s the season where we gear up to say our last goodbyes to the fabulous year that was. The drop of in temperatures creates a cozy vibe as you get your warm winter clothes out of the closet, sipping hot cappuccinos and diving head first into comfort food.


With parties and get-togethers being the norm to welcome and bid adieu to the final month of the year, why not serve your guests a delightful drink that would warm the cockles of their hearts?


Hot chocolate is a classic winter beverage and rightly so, it is the perfect combination of comfort and warmth with the right amount of indulgence. Decadent chocolate paired with Christmassy spice is a must in the Festive season and what better way to accomplish this than by using Gingerbread spice mix?


The hot chocolate is a rich concoction of creamy milk, melted dark chocolate, cocoa powder and spices. As it bubbles away, you can feel the Christmas spirit kicking in! How do you make this even more celebratory you ask? You simply pour them in these Reindeer paper cups!


What’s hot chocolate without some fluffy marshmallows! You could top your drink with some store-bought marshmallows but if you’d like to customize them to add a special touch to the gingerbread hot chocolate, why not make your own? Besides, they’re super easy to prepare! Use your favourite Christmas cookie cutters to give them festive shapes and drop them by the dozen in your hot chocolate!


Serve these decadent treats in the festive golden plates complete with gold napkins and use the festive paper straws to sip these decadent delights!


To make this an adult beverage, add a bit of your favourite brandy, rum or whiskey and let the festivities kick in!


Ingredients:


For the Marshmallows:

1 tablespoon cornflour

1 tablespoon icing sugar

Oil for greasing

7 grams unflavoured gelatine (this is a non-vegetarian product)

3 tablespoons water + 45 grams water

105 grams caster sugar

½ teaspoon vanilla extract

Sprinkles (Optional)


For the Gingerbread Hot Chocolate:

500 mls full fat milk

100 grams dark chocolate, chopped

1 tablespoon cocoa powder

1 tablespoon instant coffee powder

2 tablespoons caster sugar (add more if needed)

1 teaspoon cornflour

1 ½ teaspoons gingerbread spice mix


Method:

Grease a tray with oil and sprinkle a mix of cornflour and icing sugar generously on the surface.

Begin by making the marshmallows. In a bowl, add the 3 tablespoons water and sprinkle the gelatine over it.

Let it sit for 15 minutes to activate.

In a saucepan, add caster sugar and 45 grams of water.

Bring it to the boil, then reduce heat to simmer until a candy thermometer registers 115 degrees Celsius.

If you don’t have a candy thermometer, simply cook the sugar and water mix for 8 – 9 minutes on medium low flame without stirring.

Pour the sugar syrup gently over the gelatine mix while beating constantly with electric beaters on low speed.

Once sugar syrup is poured, increase speed to high and beat for 5 minutes.

Grease the spatula with oil and transfer the marshmallow mix into the tray and flatten it.

The mix will be very sticky. Top the surface with sprinkles whilst still wet.

Let it set for 2 – 3 hours. Use cookie cutters to cut shapes or cut squares.


To make the hot chocolate, combine all the ingredients in a saucepan.

Bring to boil.

Reduce the heat and simmer for 3 minutes.

Pour into Reindeer cups and top with marshmallows.

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