The simplest chocolate recipe you will ever learn is something a six-year-old can do, if there is a step stool handy: chocolate milk. Pour a glass of cold, fresh cow’s milk, preferably whole-fat, not to the brim and not as high as you would pour it if you were drinking it unenhanced. Squirt in chocolate syrup from a squeeze bottle. Stir. Drink.
(You must not use chocolate powder; only thick, gooey syrup will do. You might be able to get away with powder, in a pinch, if you’re making hot chocolate, which is usually just heated-up chocolate milk with tiny marshmallows floating in it and sometimes featuring a sprinkle of nutmeg or cinnamon, but two things to remember are 1. hot chocolate should be a little heavier on the chocolate than cold chocolate milk, and 2. syrup is still better.)
Of the best known brands of chocolate syrup available, Bosco still rules, even though, disappointingly, high fructose corn syrup has replaced the cane sugar that sweetened the product in this baby boomer’s childhood. Hershey places second, with Nestlé a poor third. Not one of their websites is forthcoming about the ingredients in their syrups, even though the information is readily available on the label of every bottle! Aforementioned baby boomer happens to keep a bottle of Bosco, difficult to obtain at her part of the world, tucked upside down (to faciliate flow) in the door of her refrigerator, along with a larger bottle of Berryhill, an off brand. The Bosco contains, in descending order of prevalence, high fructose corn syrup, sugar syrup, corn syrup, water, cocoa, malt extract, xanthan gum, salt, natural vanilla flavor, citric acid, and vitamins B3, B6 and B2. The Berryhill contains high fructose corn syrup, corn syrup, water, sugar, cocoa, “2% or less” (which means everything following is also 2% or less, give the listing order) of potassium sorbate, salt, mono- and di-glycerides, polysorbate 60, xanthan gum, and vanillin. Note that vanillin is an artificial flavoring, and that polysorbate 60 is an emulsifier used also in cosmetics. Berryhill hasn’t got its own website but is mentioned on the site of its distributor, Aldi, where the product is sufficiently inexpensive that overlooking the ingredient list may be forgivable.
However, even this simple delicacy can be improved upon, and here is how: with the addition of a single ingredient, turn it into a New York Egg Cream.
Incomprehensibly, an egg cream contains neither eggs nor cream. It is just a chocolate milk soda. Add seltzer to chocolate milk and you have a chocolate egg cream! (Add raspberry or orange syrup along with the seltzer and you’ve got an exquisite egg cream.) NOTE: You cannot add chocolate milk to seltzer, unless your greatest joy in life is sponging off your flooded kitchen counter; you must add the seltzer to the chocolate milk (any extra flavoring comes before the seltzer).
If all you can get your hands on is club soda, so be it; it will work. However, seltzer has more fizz, and that’s what gives an egg cream its bite. Do not use tonic water; it contains quinine, which makes it bitter.
The proper ratio of chocolate milk to seltzer in an egg cream is as much based on personal taste as is the ratio of chocolate syrup to milk in a plain chocolate milk. However, the approximate ratio will be three to four parts chocolate milk to one part seltzer. If you’re stuck with club soda, add slightly more, to enhance the fizz (you may wish to make the chocolate component stronger too).
If seltzer does not provide enough of a kick for you, then perhaps a chocolate cocktail will do the trick. There are chocolate liqueurs that are perfect unadulterated, over ice, mixed with vodka, rum or brandy, or swirled into milk or cream. The richest of these is Godiva, but other creme de cacaos are less expensive and can be enriched by the addition of the kind of syrup used in the making of chocolate milk and egg creams, or the thinner syrups, notably those made by Torani and Monin. There are also nonchocolate liqueurs that can be combined with chocolate syrup or chocolate liqueur and other ingredients to produce sweet, delightful cocktails. Here are some original ideas:
* Chocky Mocky *
Mix one part coffee liqueur, such as Kahlua, Tia Maria, Copa de Oro, Kamora, Bols Coffee Liqueur; one part chocolate liqueur, such as Godiva Dark Chocolate, Godiva White Chocolate, Mozart Gold Chocolate Cream Liqueur, Mozart White Chocolate Cream Liqueur or any crème de cacao (such as those made by Bols); two parts heavy whipping cream and one part whole cow’s milk. The best way of mixing these ingredients thoroughly is to put them in a jar and shake the jar with anticipatory vigor. Pour into wide or tall glasses and garnish with fresh mint leaves.
* Chockaretto *
Substitute, in the Chocky Mocky recipe, two parts amaretto (almond-flavored liqueur) for one part coffee liqueur (amaretto is more delicately flavored) and reduce the chocolate to one part. The best of these is Amaretto Di Saronno, but Bols and DeKuyper make decent versions.
* Chambord Avec Chocolat *
Mix two parts Chambord (black raspberry liqueur), one part chocolate liqueur or crème de cacao and one half part dark rum. Pour over ice or smooth it out with three parts heavy whipping cream or half and half.
* Licky Chocky *
Equal parts anisette (a black licorice liqueur, the best of which is Sambuca; sometimes this kind of liqueur is called pastis) and chocolate liqueur or crème de cacao, over ice or creamy smooth as with the recipes above.
* Shirley Temple Very Black *
Two parts thick chocolate syrup; one part dark chocolate syrup of the sort made by Monin and Torani (the latter’s Chocolate Milano syrup is wonderful); one eighth part cinnamon syrup; one quarter part crème de cacao syrup and one half part chocolate mint syrup. This one cries out for milk!
Note that the brand names mentioned, other than Chambord, are those that have been sampled by the author; many others exist and their exclusion implies no disrespect. Further note: the nature of chocolate is that it craves milk and cream, but if a creamy drink is not desired, skip the cream and milk, keeping the other ratios the same, put ice cubes in the jar, then either serve the drinks ice and all, or first strain out the ice; the latter is recommended, since ice melts and will water down that luscious flavor. Still further note that Monin and Torani make thin syrups in the same flavors as the liqueurs mentioned and those can be used for virgin cocktails. And on a final note, thick syrups such as those made by Bosco, Hersheys et al must be refrigerated after being opened, and the thin syrups such as those made by Monin and Torani.
Finally, what serious look at chocolate drinks would ignore the chocolate milkshake? You’ll need a blender. Blend one scoop of the darkest chocolate ice cream you can find, one scoop of vanilla bean or French vanilla, a generous squirt of thick chocolate syrup and milk to fill the blender without causing an overflow). If it’s thicker than you like, add more milk. If it’s thinner than you like, pour half of it back into the blender and add another scoop of chocolate ice cream, blend, then mix well with the part that didn’t get a second blending.
Now it’s up to you to go chock-wild and create your own heavenly chocolate beverages!
Further reading about the products mentioned in this article:
1. 1000+ ideas about Frozen Drinks on Pinterest | Ocean Spray …
2. How to Create a food diary step by step
3. 28 Mocktails and non-alcoholic drinks to love – Mix That Drink