Cosy socks, oversized hoodie struggles, moisturiser at an arm's stretch and lots of cosy blanket snuggles. You know what that means?
Winter season is finally here, and while we're enjoying the weather casually surprising us with the chills, the foodie in us in craving some hot chocolate, and quality (socially-distant) time with our best mates.
Far from our regional delicacy, the drink is obviously a tough one to master. From getting the perfect, velvety texture to sweeten your winter palates, all the way to whipping a delicious froth to give you a canvas for those yummy decorations; here are five ways to easily up your hot drinks game this winter.
Hot cocoa floats
Imagine decorating your hot chocolate with a scoop of vanilla ice-cream that's just magnificently floating in the rich, foamy goodness of your warm fuzzy drink? Now imagine being able to gulp that warmth and slurp that freeze with a spoon, all at once? Sounds like a dream? It tastes even better!
Give your drink an upgrade by adding mini chocolate shavings, a generous layer of some delicious chocolate syrup (our preference is Hershey's), and peanuts as part of your condiments. Now, sit back and enjoy.
Little mug floaties
Too lazy to create art on your drink? No worries, it's 2020, and lucky for you, minimal is the new chic. Melt some basic chocolate chips into a muffin cup (Hack: you can do six and even twelve at a time!), and freeze until they set.
Then fill your cup with your yummiest treats (some marshmallows, M&Ms or even whipped cream), and watch it float across the sea of richness you just created. Less is more and adorable too!
Did someone say cookies?
One part white sugar, two parts butter, and three parts plain wheat flour – shortbread cookies are the ultimate munchy fix when it comes to complimenting hot drinks, and what better way than to use your two favourite things, pull your sleeves up and innovate?
Not only will the cute lid help your drink stay warm for longer, it will also satisfy those random, and might I add, usually unnecessary hunger pangs that seem to pop up at odd hours of the night. Excited to make them? Find an easy recipe here.
Flavoured chocolate bombs
This one's a toughie, but if you're really invested in sipping that big mug of royalty, it's what we call the ultimate combination of exotic and yummy. Some chocolate spheres filled with lots of cocoa goodness and tailored to your level of spice, creaminess and winter mood.
Prepare your bombs, decorate with your favourite toppings (sprinkles, chocolate chips, grated cinnamon, or even sweetened coconut shavings), and watch your drink explode with flavour.
Pro tip: you want to make sure you’re using good quality chocolate with cocoa butter in it, and not too many ingredients, or your chocolate won't melt right.
Lazy lover's salt on the rim
If you've reached this part of the article, loved the ideas but convinced yourself this hard work is not for you – don't fret because I feel you. Winter laziness is a whole mood, but when so are your hot chocolate cravings, here's a little something to build up the recipe from the basics.
Topple your empty mug, run it along some melted chocolate, dip it in some sea-salt (could alternate between peppermint and cinnamon too) and there you go. Elevated and ready to gulp. This one definitely has to be my culinary soulmate!
Must be a lot of things hot chocolate can't cure but I don't know a single one of them.