Giulio's Chocolate Liqueur Recipe
Hot, cold…as long as it’s chocolate!
With winter well under way, I thought I would present a recipe to help us keep warm. Because you rarely need that in Sicily, at least in the area that I'm from, this time I can't really say I've taken inspiration from my mum's recipe book. Rather, this delicious chocolate liqueur I'm about to introduce is a symbol of my life in Leeds: long cold winters snuggling up under the covers to discover a new feeling of cosiness, the warmth of new friendships while sipping hot chocolate in small cafés. And yes, let's say it, some booze as well, here and there.
It only sounds logical, then, that to summarise all of that, my choice for this month's And so to Recipe should fall on this boozy, chocolatey drink, or, using a fancier expression, 'chocolate liqueur'. According to Wikipedia the origins of this drink need to be traced back to 17th century France, although it soon became popular in the New World as well. But whether it first originated on this or the other side of the Atlantic, I'm sure that for at least some of us this peculiar mix of sweetness and inebriation will be a match made in heaven (or hell, more likely).
Although it is usually served chilled, it is guaranteed to keep you warm to the core, whether you enjoy it as a small drink or use it as a sauce to pour on your ice cream or any other dessert. Let's have a look at the ingredients and the simple 5-step process (as usual, easy is my key-word):
Cooking time: 45 min
Skill level: Easy
- 1 litre of whole milk
- 160 grams of unsweetened (dark) cocoa powder
- 700 grams of sugar
- 1 tsp of vanilla essence
- 300 ml of 95% pure alcohol
1. Start by warming up your milk on low heat. Add the sugar, get stirring and keep doing so until the sugar has dissolved completely.
2. Sieve your cocoa powder into the mix and add the vanilla essence as well.
3. Keep stirring for about 30 mins on low heat, making sure that no lumps are formed. Do not bring to the boiling point.
4. Take your mix off the heat, let it cool down for at least 30 mins then add the alcohol and stir until you obtain a smooth creamy texture.
5. Bottle up your liqueur and ideally let it sit in the fridge for 1-2 weeks. Remember to shake well before drinking.
If this basic recipe has sparked your creativity, you can add some extra flavour with some grated orange peel, cinnamon, mint leaves or even chilli. Furthermore, if creative really is your style, why not serve your boozy chocolate in fancy glasses with your own decorations? You can use melted chocolate and stick little nuts, coconut flakes or anything you can think of!
If you need a little help getting more colourful, have a look at our Unicorn Hot Chocolate kit. Don't worry if it says 'hot', this fabulous kit is the perfect match for any chocolate-based drink, including our chilled liqueur!
Finally, sit back, close your eyes and enjoy the magic that only cocoa can bring about. If, like me, you're enjoying this drink on your couch, buried under layers of blankets, I would recommend adding the extra comfort of your softest pillow or, even better, a Chunky Knit Cushion from our Shop. Warmth guaranteed!