Hot Cocoa Part II

Once the milk is at the correct steamy temperature, which is complete guesstimation, we (my son and I) whisk in the chopped chocolate. My son in particular really enjoys watching the chocolate melt into the hot milk because it “turns (translation: swirls)” the chocolate into spider webs. It takes a few minutes of whisking for all the chocolate to melt. My son is more than happy to assist in the chocolate melting, by “turning” it as he likes to say, which means stirring.

While all this is going on, daddy is trying to entertain our daughter. She, however, wants in on the action and continually crawls back into the kitchen to beg her way into my arms (thank goodness I have a helper to stir). Thanks to her brother, she is no stranger to the taste of chocolate and I believe that it is the aroma of the melting chocolate that keeps her coming back into the kitchen to see what the fuss is all about (and perhaps to beg for another taste from her brother’s helping hand).

After several minutes the chocolate is completely melted in the steamy milk, and the hot cocoa is ready to pour into the prepared hot cocoa mugs (with the little matching saucers). We ladle the hot cocoa into the three prepared mugs. For the finishing touch I dust a little cocoa powder over the homemade marshmallows which are, at this point, drenched in hot cocoa and add a small crank (from the salt grinder) of sea salt as well.

It is always the first taste that gets me because I forget, after a year of not having it, how rich and decadent it actually is. While my husband and I are both slowly sipping the hot chocolatey beverage, our son is practically eating it. The smear of chocolate and marshmallow across his face speaks for itself. Once he is finished, which is faster than I anticipated a small child could drink a hot beverage, he turns to me and says, “I want some more … PLEASE!!!