The weather is changing, my friends. It is becoming that time where all I really want to do is curl up on my couch with a good book, pets all around, hot mug of steaming liquid in my hand, and forget about everything else. I particularly like to read Anne Rice’s vampire novels during the cold seasonal months. I can’t read them during the summer, something about night dwelling immortals and the bright happy sun do not mix…my imagination is good, but not quite that skilled. So, it is time. I walk to my book shelf, choose my book, and then hit the kitchen for that final touch to a perfect chilly evening. By the way, I might add that I pretty much never turn my heat on, really paints the picture I am going for here. I do draw the line at dragon breath in the house though (you know, steamy breath). I’ll let the heat turn on just enough to keep from getting frost bite.
Back to the kitchen: Sometimes I hit up a nice cup of tea….but not this time. It is soon to be Halloween. I want a frothing mug of hot chocolate that is both a trick and a treat. What the hell am I talking about? Well, hot chocolate is known for being a sweet and delicious velvety drink, coating the throat with a rich film that leaves the mouth craving another sip…and another….and…yeah, you know what I’m talking about. This recipe packs of punch, though, with the introduction of cayenne pepper. I love the mix of sweet and spicy. It makes me sip much slower so I can really savor the flavors of this dessert like drink. It also makes this the perfect hot cocoa recipe for a mischievous holiday like Halloween.
- 2½ C dairy free milk
- ¼ C vegan chocolate chips
- ¼ C agave syrup (less if you don't want it very sweet)
- 2 tbs unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- ½ tsp cinnamon
- ½ tsp cayenne pepper
- 6 vegan marshmallows (I used Sweet & Sara brand)
- OPTIONAL: 2 shots Van Gogh Espresso vodka
- Place a sauce pan on the stove on medium heat. Add your milk and heat until warm.
- Add all other ingredients and stir well.
- Bring to a low simmer, stirring often. Let simmer for 1 minute then take off heat immediately.
- Pour into 2 mugs, add the espresso vodka now if you choose to add it, and then top with 3 marshmallows each. Sprinkle cinnamon on top if you would like.