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Hot chocolate. The French way. Chocolat Chaud, if you will. We’re doing this.

In honor of the first week we’ve actually had “winter” weather here in the Los Angeles (it’s 38 degrees here as I write!) hot chocolate sat high on my agenda.

But not just any hot chocolate. Something comparable to the hot chocolate we drank all over Europe in late November and early December. The weather was nearly unbearable for this California girl, so downing hot chocolate saved my life on several occasions.

In, fact, to demonstrate how much hot chocolate we consumed on this trip, Bryan drew a pie graph in our journal we wrote in for this trip.

Pretty impressive right?

(Except for Bryan’s handwriting. Good gracious. I think that one on the left says “Flights and Trains. I’m going to blame that on writing while riding a train.)

I’m not sure how we, as an American society, decided that hot chocolate should consist of powdered chocolate and hot water. When you go to Paris—really anywhere we went in Europe—it you get a mug of melted chocolate mixed with warm milk.

Yeah.  Not really a hard decision here.

So I found this recipe by Orangette which is from the book Paris Sweets by Dorie Greenspan. Her recipe comes from Laduree, which I’m sad to say Bryan and I never got to in Paris, but drinking this hot chocolate helps ease the pain a bit. 

Plus, this recipe is so simple and uses just four ingredients. You have no excuse to not have delicious hot chocolate in your life. And bonus for me: this is 100% gluten free.


1 ½ cups whole milk

2 ½ tablespoons water

2 ½ tablespoons granulated sugar

3 oz. bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped

Pour milk, water and sugar into a medium saucepan and whisk occasionally until the sugar dissolves. Increase the heat to medium high and bring mixture just to a boil. Take off the heat. Whisk in your chocolate. Toss in a blender (use caution when blending hot liquids in a blender because they will expand) or use your immersion blender and blend until frothy.

(Now, I would show you photos of all this, but they mysteriously did not save on my phone when I took them. Just imagine they were really impressive photographs.)

I also added some whipped cream, as if this recipe needed any improvements. Or, maybe more appropriately, food processor-ed cream.

Eh. Whipped cream sounds better.

Pour heavy cream into a food processor. Add a teaspoon or so of vanilla extract. Turn on food processor for about a minute.

Boom. Just as good as tradtionally-made whipped cream, but less time consuming. And less arm muscle.

Pour your hot chocolate into a mug, top with as much whipped cream as the law will allow and contemplate how you’ve lived this long not having hot chocolate this way.

Real hot chocolate. You deserve it.