Remember our epic Vanilla-Rose Water Cupcakes crafted by star baker Heather Baird of SprinkleBakes? We know — how could you forget? She’s returned to share another one of her stellar sweet treats and this one’s got ‘holiday’ sprinkled all over it.
“When chilly weather arrives, we’re all inclined to look for something warming — fuzzy socks, flannel pajamas, and that all important winter weather staple, hot chocolate!” says Heather.
“Fragrant cinnamon and clove add extra warmth to this recipe, and its single serving portions make for perfect party favors! Just be sure to package them in festive cellophane bags with instructions, so friends know to dissolve 1 hot chocolate stick in 6 oz. hot milk. I used biodegradable wooden spoons, but you could use lollipop sticks, wooden craft sticks, or even fancy dessert spoons.”
Spiced Hot Chocolate on a Stick
By Heather Baird, SprinkleBakes.com
8 small paper or plastic cups
8 wooden spoons, lollipop sticks, or wooden craft sticks
8 oz. best-quality chocolate, chopped evenly (Valrhona, Scharffen Berger and Callebaut are all good choices)
¼ cup natural cocoa powder, sifted
½ cup confectioners’ sugar, sifted
¼ tsp. ground cloves
¼ tsp. ground ginger
½ tsp. ground cinnamon, plus extra for dusting
Disposable piping bag or a zip-top bag with the corner snipped
One or two grinds of black pepper
Whole star anise and cinnamon sticks (optional)
1. Place chopped chocolate in a heat-proof bowl. Simmer a pot of water filled 1/3 full and place bowl over water. Stir until chocolate is almost completely melted, with just a few lumps remaining. Remove bowl from simmering pot and wipe the bottom of the bowl with a dish cloth to avoid getting water in the chocolate. Continue to stir until chocolate has melted completely.
2. Stir in cocoa powder, confectioners’ sugar and spices. The mixture will be very thick and it may take a few minutes to thoroughly incorporate the ingredients.
3. Transfer mixture to a piping bag or zip-top bag with the corner snipped. Pipe mixture evenly into the 8 cups (about 1 oz. per cup/cavity).
4. Give each cup a tap or two on the kitchen counter to remove air bubbles. Place a ‘stick’ into each cup. The mixture should be thick enough for the stick to stand upright. Sprinkle with extra cinnamon, then decorate with pieces of star anise and cinnamon sticks if desired.
5. Place cups in the refrigerator for 5-10 minutes, or until chocolate has hardened. If using paper or plastic cups, remove hardened chocolate by snipping the side of the cup with a pair of scissors, and peeling it away from the chocolate.
6. Package in cellophane bags for gift-giving or display on a fancy platter on your holiday treat table!