Friday, January 22, 2010

It's Time for Hot Chocolate!

The grey clouds parted just long enough to show off the layer of snow they’d left on the mountains. An amazing sight, really. For us moisture-starved Arizonans, this past week has been quite a treat—there’s rain in the deserts and snow on the mountains.

Our cat doesn’t like the rain—it’s wet, he’s wet. He meows at the door wanting us to make the rain stop. We don’t. He wonders if we should let him come in where it’s warm. We don’t. I’m not sure I’d like the outcome of letting an outdoor cat have a sleep-in.

Our dog is also put out by the rain—the whole two minutes she’s out in it. She scratches at the door after being good and doing her ‘business’ outside. We open the door to let her in and she brushes against the cat to enter.

My daughter goes out and gives the cat come attention and then makes a warm little cubby for him to sleep in. He quits meowing, and that is good.

This is the perfect weather for curling up in a nice cozy blanket and reading a good book. It’s the perfect weather for hot chocolate—or soup. Both are good, but today I’m going to share a recipe for Paula Deen’s Dreamy Creamy Hot Chocolate. I’ve tried it, and it is dreamy and creamy.

Dreamy Creamy Hot Chocolate

Makes 2 quarts
1 14-oz can sweetened condensed milk
½ C unsweetened cocoa
1 ½ tsp vanilla extract
1/8 tsp salt
6 ½ C hot water
Mini marshmallow (optional)

In a large saucepan, combine sweetened condensed milk, cocoa, vanilla and salt; mix well. Over medium heat, slowly stir in water; heat through, stirring occasionally. Do not boil. Top with marshmallow if desired.

**This can be stored in the refrigerator for up to five days. Mix well and reheat before serving.

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