Saturday, February 11, 2012

Week 6 of 52WOC: Brazilian Theme. Brazilian Chocolate Drink, Perfect for Valentine’s Day Wake Up.


Not the most impressive thing in pictures I’ll admit.

I’ve been a bit slow to get started posting this month, so I’m thankful to have the motivator of 52 Weeks of Cooking to keep me from falling too far behind. And none too soon too, tomorrow is Sunday after all, and I rather not be too much of a last minute person.

Unlike the last weeks where I had a pretty good idea in mind for what to do off the top of my head, this week actually required some thoughts. The perusal of the Wikipedia article on Brazilian cuisine lent some pretty delicious ideas. The caipirinha was a strong contender, being a cocktail and pretty quick to assemble, but I wasn’t feeling quite luxurious enough this week to go out and buy a bottle of cachaça for one week’s post. Another choice I gave a lot of consideration was coxinha, a fried finger food filled with chicken and other goodness, which I definitely would have made for a super bowl feast… if I actually had one to go too. Which fell through, so that too, was scrapped.

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In the end, it was the arrival of my copy of Joy of Cooking that gave a solution to the quandary; in a fit of inspiration a day after the book arrived, I flipped to the index and looked for anything “Brazilian.” There was only one entry, Brazilian Chocolate, a hot drink that involves coffee, chocolate, cream, cinnamon, and a few other goodies. I was sold.

I have to admit that I am uncertain as to how authentically “Brazilian” this drink is. Wikipedia has nothing on this, a Google search for Brazilian Chocolate only yielded actual chocolates rather than a drink, and a googling of “Brazilian Chocolate Drink” pretty much yielded this recipe with absolutely no history whatsoever. It makes me wonder if this recipe is as French as a French Fry and just has Brazil attached to it simply to make it sound more exotic than it really is. Anyone with more information, please comment!

Issues of authenticity aside, this is a delicious drink, and for chocolate/coffee lovers might be particularly pleased to have this drink Valentine’s morning, for those of you lucky (?) enough to be in a relationship this time of year!

On to the pictures, with full recipe at the end.

The ingredients are pretty basic, with the most exotic ingredients being cinnamon and cream. Half and half can, and probably should, be used in place of heavy cream. I had heavy cream I needed to use though, so in it goes.

Other ingredients are vanilla, bittersweet chocolate (semi sweet would work too) milk, sugar, and a bit of salt. And boiling water.

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Sugar and salt are put into a saucepan.

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Along with an ounce of chocolate. If you are using morsels, this is a fair amount less than a quarter cup.

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Chop up the chocolate before adding to your saucepan.

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If you aren’t the attentive type, a double boiler would probably be advisable, but at Joy of Cooking did not explicitly state that was the case for this recipe, I was daring and just went with it directly over very low heat.

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Once the chocolate has melted into the sugar, it is ready for the next step. I’m sure it could melt further…

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But when the next step calls for adding boiling water, the point is moot.

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Stir this and keep over low heat for 3-5 minutes, and do not bring to a boil.

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During those minutes is an ideal time to prep your other liquids. If you are fortunate enough to have an expensive coffee maker, you’re probably golden.

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Hot coffee, hot cream and milk (not hot) ready to go.

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When your 3-5 minutes are up, add them to the melted chocolate mixture.

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And then whisk thoroughly.

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Finally add a bit of vanilla.

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And a pinch of cinnamon.

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Whisk thoroughly again and serve.

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You pretty much get what you expect, a decadently rich chocolaty coffee. Very very rich. Actually a bit too rich, perhaps on account of the heavy cream I used, but I suspect even with half and half it would be on the rich side. And definitely on the sweet side as well.

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If you can restrain yourself you’ll probably have extra, but never fear.

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Just chill it, then make an iced chocolate drink. Simply add to crushed ice.

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This is the way I think it should be served, the extra water from the crushed ice moderating the richness and sweetness of the drink very well.

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Brazilian Chocolate, adapted from Joy of Cooking, enough for 4 people (at least):

  • 1 oz. of semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, chopped
  • 1/4 cup of sugar
  • three fingered pinch of salt
  • 1 cup of boiling water
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup cream or half and half, hot
  • 1 and 1/2 cup strong coffee, hot
  • teaspoon of vanilla
  • pinch of cinnamon
  1. In a medium saucepan, combine chocolate, sugar and salt. Place over very low heat (or a double boiler) and melt until chocolate melts into the sugar.
  2. Add boiling water and keep hot, but not boiling, for 3-5 minutes.
  3. Add the milk, cream or half and half, and coffee and whisk.
  4. Add vanilla and pinch of cinnamon.
  5. Serve hot.
  6. Chill any leftover drink and serve over crushed ice!

1 comment:

  1. Well I don't know how much Brazilian it surely is, but I'm sure that it's a really good chocolate drink.