Rich, creamy, and with a great presentation, this Salted Hot Chocolate recipe is a lovely romantic dessert to share with a loved one.
Chocolate is almost always associated with romance. It’s just sexy. The rich, luxurious, slightly sweet dark chocolate is my favorite. I love it as a deep dark chocolate ice cream, chopped up in my Caramel Coconut Icebox Cake, or even as a lovely sauce to pour all over…well, anything (or anyone) you’d like.
My mind is obviously someplace else, but chocolate and romance do have a long history together, so you can’t blame me.
While chocolate was a prized item in Mayan and Aztec culture, it didn’t become popular in Europe until the 1600’s. [note]Henderson, Amy. "How Chocolate and Valentine's Day Mated For Life." Smithsonian. February 12, 2015. Accessed February 11, 2016. http://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/how-chocolate-and-valentines-day-mated-life-180954228/?no-ist.[/note] By the 1700’s chocolate was a well-known commodity. Some believed it was a cure all, but most saw it as something to take daily to increase vigor…all kinds of vigor. [note]Jones, Christine A. "When Chocolate Was Medicine: Colmenero, Wadsworth and Dufour." Http://publicdomainreview.org/. January 28, 2015. Accessed February 11, 2016. http://publicdomainreview.org/2015/01/28/when-chocolate-was-medicine-colmenero-wadsworth-and-dufour/.[/note]
In 1652 Englishman James Wadsworth wrote that chocolate, "Twill make old women Young and Fresh; Create new notions of the flesh, and cause them to long for you know what, if they but taste chocolate." [note]Prinz, Rabbi Deborah R. "Valentine's Day Chocolate Love Potions." The Huffington Post. February 10, 2014. Accessed February 11, 2016. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/rabbi-deborah-r-prinz/valentines-day-chocolate-_b_4753644.html.[/note] Ummm, yeah, I’m pretty sure you know what he means when he says “you know what.”
In the 1700’s Madame du Barry allegedly used chocolate in her profession. Madame du Barry was a courtesan in Paris, who eventually became the maîtresse-en-titre of King Louis XV of France. That means she became the main mistress of the king…it was a semiofficial position that came with some perks, like apartments. [note]"Madame Du Barry." Wikipedia. Accessed February 11, 2016. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Madame_du_Barry#Life_as_a_courtesan_and_official_mistress_of_Louis_XV.[/note] Go figure.
As a courtesan it’s been said that she would give her clients chocolate to stimulate them. [note]Henderson, Amy. "How Chocolate and Valentine's Day Mated For Life." Smithsonian. February 12, 2015. Accessed February 11, 2016. http://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/how-chocolate-and-valentines-day-mated-life-180954228/?no-ist.[/note] Apparently it worked since she made her way to maitresse-en-titre.
We now know that the aphrodisiac qualities of chocolate are most likely psychological. [note]O'connor, Anahad. "The Claim: Chocolate Is an Aphrodisiac." The New York Times. July 17, 2006. Accessed February 11, 2016. http://www.nytimes.com/2006/07/18/health/18real.html?_r=0.[/note] Even though that’s the case, the idea that chocolate is an aphrodisiac is such a huge belief in our pop culture that you might as well use it to your advantage with Valentine’s Day around the corner.
Bring your date a lovely box of fancy chocolates or better yet, make them this 1930’s Salted Hot Chocolate.
This Salted Hot Chocolate recipe comes from The Detroit News Menu Cook Book published in 1933. It’s basically a rich chocolate sauce that has steaming hot milk added to it. The original doesn’t call for nearly as much salt as I used, but me being the salt fiend that I am, I had to transform it into a salted hot chocolate.
Other than adding the salt it needed (at least in my mind), I followed the recipe as written and it worked well. That was kind of a surprise to me because the step where you melt the unsweetened chocolate in water seemed odd…but it worked just fine!
While hot chocolate can be quite romantic on its own, the presentation of this Salted Hot Chocolate brings the romance factor up a few notches. Present your date with the chocolate sauce and the milk in individual pitchers and slowly combine the two in dainty tea cups. I’m sure they’ll appreciate it and I hope you all have a fantastic Valentine’s Day, lovingly attached or blissfully single.
If you only have sweetened chocolate on hand, of course you can substitute it for the unsweetened…only if you reduce the amount of sugar called for. Chocolatecrafter.com offered a list of conversions to help you out in this situation!
Have a little extra flake salt nearby when serving. Topping off the whipped cream with a little pinch is a lovely addition the recipe.
I used Maldon Salt for this recipe. I always have a ton in my cabinet from work, but even if I didn’t get it for free, it’s still my salt of choice.
Salted Hot Chocolate
- 1 cup whipping cream
- 1 tablespoon powdered sugar
Salted Chocolate Sauce
- 2 ounces unsweetened chocolate chopped
- ½ cup cold water
- ¾ cup sugar
- 1 ½ teaspoons flake salt
- 3 cups milk
- For the whipped cream, combine cream and powdered sugar.
- Using your tool of choice (whisk, hand/stand mixer, food processor, etc.) whip to stiff peaks. Cover and refrigerate.
- For the salted chocolate sauce, set-up an ice bath.
- Place chopped chocolate and cold water in a medium pot.
- Over medium heat, constantly stir until chocolate has melted.
- Reduce heat to low and whisk until smooth.
- Add sugar and salt and continue to whisk until sugar has melted, about 3 minutes.
- Transfer the sauce to the ice bath and whisk until chilled.
- Fold in ½ cup of the whipped cream.
- To serve, heat milk using any method you like, and combine ¼ cup of the salted chocolate sauce with ½ cup of milk. Stir well.
- Top with a large spoonful of the remaining whipped cream and, if you like, a small sprinkle of flake salt.