Saturday, December 5, 2020

Cocoa Day Review

National Cocoa Day is celebrated each year on December 13. A cup of cocoa or hot chocolate is the perfect way to set the scene for the upcoming winter holidays.

The terms hot cocoa and hot chocolate are pretty much interchangeable.  The difference being that hot cocoa is made with cocoa powder, heated milk or water, and sugar. Hot chocolate uses ground chocolate containing cocoa butter mixed with hot milk. 


|| Hot chocolate is also known as drinking chocolate. 


Origin of Cocoa


The first chocolate beverage was created by the Mayans over 2000 years ago. It became an essential part of the Aztec civilization by 1400 and eventually found it's way from Mexico to the New World. The original cocoa drink was created by grinding cocoa seeds into a paste and mixing it with water, cornmeal, chili peppers, and other ingredients.  This first cocoa was very bitter, since sugar had not yet been discovered, but was highly prized by the elite of the Aztec world. 


It was also thought to have medicinal properties to combat stomach ailments. In our modern times, the health benefits are known to come from the antioxidants in the chocolate.


Source: Pixabay
Today's cocoa is sweet, and delicious. Plus, if you are in a hurry, hot chocolate is easily and quickly made using our modern-day instant cocoa mixes.






Or ~ you could make a quick and fun cup of cocoa with a Cocoa Bomb! This selection of cocoa bombs are handmade by ItzMyPartyCakery on Etsy.


Handmade Hot Cocoa Bombs on Etsy

Hot Cocoa Bombs! Place your cocoa bomb into a mug and add hot milk or hot water and watch the magic happen! Each Hot Cocoa Bomb come individually packaged in a crystal clear box. A perfect stocking stuffer, thank you, or special treat for yourself!



Creamy Hot Chocolate Recipe from Scratch by Allrecipes:


Source: Pixabay


Ingredients:


  • ⅓ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • ¾ cup white sugar 
  • 1 pinch salt
  • ⅓ cup boiling water
  • 3 ½ cups milk
  • ¾ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup half-and-half cream


Directions:


Combine the cocoa, sugar and pinch of salt in a saucepan. Blend in the boiling water. Bring this mixture to an easy boil while you stir. Simmer and stir for about 2 minutes. Watch that it doesn't scorch. Stir in 3 1/2 cups of milk and heat until very hot, but do not boil! Remove from heat and add vanilla. Divide between 4 mugs. Add the cream to the mugs of cocoa to cool it to drinking temperature.


*For an even quicker way to make homemade hot chocolate, using cocoa powder and chocolate chips, check out this recipe from Allison featured on her blog Celebrating Sweets


Ways to Serve


Source: Pixabay

A cup of hot cocoa is delicious served in a variety of ways. Add one or more of the following toppings for a delicious warm drink on a cold winter's day.


  • Whipped cream
  • Cinnamon and sugar
  • Marshmallow
  • candy canes
  • caramel
  • toffee bits
  • coconut
  • Peppermint Patties
  • butterscotch candies, crushed
  • candy sprinkles
  • cinnamon cereal
  • mini chocolate chips
  • chopped nuts


Pick a pretty Cocoa Mug


Vintage Carnation Hot Cocoa Mug


Use your favorite mug for your cocoa or hot chocolate.  Or pick out a new one for this winter season, such as this vintage 1980s Carnation Hot Cocoa Mug available on Etsy in the shop of Coastal Crochet Crafts.


Mark December 13 on your calendar for National Cocoa Day and enjoy the relaxing and warming taste you've come to enjoy in a delicious cup of Cocoa.


Source: Pixabay


Cocoa Day Review written by (c) Wednesday Elf on 12/5/2020


Related Links:

For those on a Keto Diet, Margaret Schindel has perfected the Ultimate Keto Hot Chocolate Recipe.





Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article. “As an Amazon Associate I (we) earn from qualifying purchases.”


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10 comments:

  1. Well, now you have done it! I need hot chocolate, now!!! I do love hot chocolate. We started celebrating cocoa day early though. As soon as the air outside is licked with a chill, it is hot chocolate time. I'm rather intrigued by those cocoa bombs. I've never tried one and they sound delicious as well as a lot of fun. I have my new snowman mugs for this year (thanks to my parents giving me the lovely set for my birthday). Cocoa bombs in snowman mugs sounds like the perfect Christmas Eve treat. Although, I may need to personally test them before the 24th, just to make sure they are okay. I'm sure you understand :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Glad to hear you enjoy hot chocolate. To me, it is an especially enjoyable drink in the wintertime. It warms you up so nice, plus is delicious. My favorite topping is whipped cream! :)

      When I was a small child, my great-grandmother taught me how to 'dunk' my toast in my cocoa. She dunked hers in coffee! We used to enjoy this tasty treat together when I would visit my 'Banny'.

      Let me know if you try out those Cocoa Bombs. I've always wondered what they were like.

      Delete
  2. Well, I just came back from a brisk walk in the out of doors and let me tell you Hot Cocoa sounds just about perfect right now. That wind just bites right through you and I know that the Hot Cocoa will warm me up just as much as the wind chilled me down. Thanks for this reminder to set some time aside just to relax and enjoy everything life has to offer. Cocoa bombs coming up!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Olivia, a cup of hot cocoa is "just the thing" after a brisk winter walk. Nice and warming.

      Delete
  3. I love a mug of cocoa after a crisp cold walk in winter.There is nothing like it for warming you up and is very comforting. My hubby and I go for walks every day even in winter, so its a warming treat! When I was a child my parents and I went out walking with the dog each day whatever the weather and sometimes it was very cold so it became a tradition for us to go for that chilly walk and come home to a roaring fire and a mug of cocoa! If I put a topping on Cocoa its usually Cinnamon. Also dunking toast in cocoa sounds delicious :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't know anyone who doesn't enjoy a cup of hot cocoa, especially after a walk on a cold winters day. And 'dunking' toast in cocoa is delicious (a family favorite). :) Thanks for your visit, Raintree Annie.

      Delete
  4. Absolutely yum! I'm going to make one tomorrow that's Keto - I'll use a sweetener instead - should taste ok - I'm really craving a hot chocolate right now - I may do it before bed - I'm going to try it with almond milk

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Barbara, if your almond milk and sweetener keto version of hot chocolate isn't the way you want it, Margaret has now come up with a keto-friendly hot chocolate recipe. Check it out here on Review This under 'Recipes'. :)

      Delete
  5. There nothing I like better than hot chocolate with marshmallows whipped cream or in my case both. Those coco bombs sound very interesting and a must try.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I agree Sam. Nothing better on a cold winter day then a cup of hot chocolate. These cocoa bombs sound quick, fun -- especially for kids -- and delicious. I will have to try them out myself one day.

      Delete

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