A dear friend who is no longer here made me this Mexican Hot Chocolate years ago and I fell in love with this thick, sweet, rich chocolate drink. Known also as Oaxacan Chocolate con Leche it’s a chocolate lovers delight!
What made it so special was the care he took in making it, stirring so as not to scorch the milk and the unexpected hint of heat from the pepper completely threw me off.
I had never had it before and the picture in my mind of a deep, thick hot chocolate accented with cinnamon was altered with his addition of a pinch of cayenne pepper. It really was thrilling, exciting and unexpected. I loved this and hope you do too. Feel free to omit the pepper if you prefer, but I hope that you at least try it first!
I like to add my own little spin on this treasure and either rim the hot chocolate glass or sprinkle the top with crushed peppermint candy canes and use half and half cream instead of milk.
I get my Mexican chocolate from a neighborhood Tiendita, but you can find this at any local Mexican market or on Amazon. The brand I like to use is Ibarra Chocolate and it hails from the maker Chocolatera de Jalisco of Guadalajara, in Jalisco, Mexico. This is also the same chocolate I use in my Slow Simmered Pork Molé Negro.
Each chocolate is wrapped and the circular tablet has eight pieces. It’s recommended to use 2 pieces per cup of liquid. That makes one thin, weak sip and not my style. So as my friend showed me in his recipe, I like to use 2 tablets (or 1 cup of chocolate pieces) and while they say to use milk, I use heavy whipping cream for full effect. If you don’t have any Ibarra Mexican Chocolate feel free to use a good chocolate bar broken into pieces or chocolate chips.
The chocolate is a little gritty and needs to be melted due its undissolved granulated sugar. It has a cinnamon flavoring, but I add a little myself, too.
Heat the heavy whipping cream to a slight simmer, add the chocolate and whisk until melted. For true Aztec and Mayan authenticity, I like to add the cayenne pepper for a slightly spicy concoction.
I serve this thick, chocolatey drink in shot glasses due to it’s richness. A little goes a long way. Wet the rim of the glass and dip the rim in crushed peppermint candy canes or sprinkle on top. This is perfect for sipping with family and friends on that special occasion. Happy Holidays and Feliz Navidad!
Mexican Hot Chocolate - Oaxacan Chocolate con Leche
- 2 tablets of Mexican Chocolate (or 1 cup chocolate pieces or chips)
- 3 cups heavy whipping cream
- 1/8 tsp cinnamon
- 1/8 tsp cayenne
- 4 candy canes crushed
- Heat the heavy whipping cream to a slight simmer, add the chocolate pieces and slowly whisk until melted. Be careful not to scorch the cream. If it is too thick for your liking add milk to thin.
- Add the cinnamon and cayenne pepper and continue to stir to incorporate completely.
- Wet the rim of a small shot glass or cup with water and dip the rim into the crushed peppermint candy and pour the hot chocolate into each cup. Sprinkle the crushed peppermint candy of top and serve.