Sipping Chocolate

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I have a confession to make. 

I don’t drink coffee.  I don’t like it, never have, never will. 

Actually, I don’t drink any caffeinated beverages. 

Blame it on chronic migraines and a long history of insomnia. 

So when I want a hot beverage I have two choices, herbal tea and hot chocolate. 

What do you think I like to pick?

If you picked the tea, then you really don’t know me. 

Except, I’m really picky when it comes to my hot chocolate.  My standards are set high and I generally compare everything to Jacques Torres Hot Chocolate. It’s thick, rich, and made with real chocolate – not cocoa powder.  Essentially, sipping chocolate sold in an 8oz cup. 

When we were in Montreal last summer, I had the perfect cup of sipping chocolate.  So dark, the chocolate was practically black, and thick enough that you could have used a spoon instead of sipping it.  The drink was served in an espresso cup and it was just the right amount to satisfy the need for chocolate. 


sipping chocolate from Montreal

While we were in Luxembourg, Brussels, France and Cologne a few weeks ago I was determined to find a cup of that luxurious sipping chocolate again. 

Unfortunately, it was much more difficult than I anticipated.  One hot chocolate was too watery, one was a little too milky and the other.  Well, that one was good – we had it at the  Schokolade Museum in Cologne.  

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However, I don’t know if you can call it hot chocolate rather than hot chocolate shake. It was so thick that the whipped cream sat on top while I sipped the entire thing through the straw.

Having been home for three weeks now, my craving has yet to subside for sipping chocolate, so I’ve created a recipe for myself.  This is different than my last hot chocolate recipe. A little searching online showed me that the best sipping chocolate should be made with a ganache base and then frothed milk mixed in. 

If you do not have access to a milk frother, warm milk whisked with an immersion blender should do the trick in its place.

This recipe makes for multiple servings of sipping chocolate.  However, the ganache can be refrigerated for a few weeks and reheated as an individual or smaller serving.  Just froth the milk when ready.  

How to make Chocolate Ganache


1 cup heavy cream
8 ounces dark chocolate (60 to 65% cacao), finely chopped
pinch of kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup whole milk

To make the ganache: In a small pot over medium heat – heat the cream until it just begins to simmer around the edges. Remove from the heat and add the chopped chocolate and whisk thoroughly until completely melted.

Stir in the kosher salt and vanilla extract.  Return the ganache to the heat and switch to low to keep warm. 

Using a frother or immersion blender with warm milk.  Froth the milk until thick and set aside.

Fill an espresso cup half full with the ganache and top with the frothed milk.  Carefully milk together and serve. 

The cooled extra ganache can be stored in an airtight container in your refrigerator for a few weeks.

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Little Red Kitchen Bake Shop

13 thoughts on “Sipping Chocolate

  1. Lyndi

    Now I am craving sipping chocolate!

    I love the ever-present pop of red within your post. 🙂

    Looking forward to meeting you at TECHmunch!


    1. Susan

      Thank you! Well, there is a lot of red in my apartment! Just look for the girl in red at Techmunch 🙂 Looking forward to meeting you too! Off to checkout your blog now!

  2. Laura

    I haven’t tried Jacques Torres, but what are your thoughts on City Bakery’s hot chocolate? I found it way too heavy/thick/sweet, but it sounds like it would be just to your liking!

    1. Susan

      I actually can never finish a cup of their hot chocolate. It is too sweet for me. I like my hot chocolate thick, but bitter. Try Jacques sometime, he has a stall in Chelsea Market, so that’ll be the easiest for you to get to (unless of course you plan a run across the Brooklyn Bridge to Dumbo!). His isn’t as sweet as City Bakery’s, plus you can always get the spicy version.

  3. Kayle (The Cooking Actress)

    That’s it: you and I are food blog sister soul mates! I don’t like coffee or any caffeinated beverages either!! AND I’m also picky about my hot chocolate-I like mine just like you like yours, and this recipe looks TO DIE for!! I can’t believe I haven’t had Jacques Torres Hot Chocolate yet!? My current fav. is Max Brenner’s Italian Thick Hot Chocolate….perhaps we should got to Jacques Torres so I can compare? Hmmm…:D

    1. Susan

      umm. . .YES!!! We can go to the one in Chelsea Market and then do a little shopping after! I also had the one at The Chocolate Room in Park Slope last night. I completely forgot how amazing it is. It is seriously, melted dark chocolate. Amazing.

      1. Kayle (The Cooking Actress)

        Sound like so much fun!!! Yes yes yes, it’s a date 🙂 When I lived in Brooklyn I heard really good things about The Chocolate Room–I was too busy visiting Max Brenner’s once a month to go, at the time, though (ah youth) 😛

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  6. Terri

    Hi! I have to say, I just LOVE this recipe! I discovered this type of hot chocolate in Seattle near Pike Market at The Confectional (AMAZING!!). They call it Colombian Hot Chocolate–it’s soooooooo good! Because of them, I add some SPICE to your recipe! 🙂

    After I stir in the kosher salt and vanilla extract, I add 1/4 t. of cinnamon, 1/4 t. of ground cloves, and 1/8th t. of cayenne. Try it! 🙂

    Thanks for this recipe!!

    1. Susan Palmer

      Thank you so much Terri! I go out to Seattle about once a year but we usually hit the Chocolate Box instead for our hot chocolate fix. Looks like I have 2 places to visit next time I go. 🙂

      1. Terri

        Susan, I just now saw the notification for your response. My gMail messes up my emails sometimes (okay–often!), and they get stuck in categories and then I don’t see them (drives me mad!).

        Anyway…..did you ever try it with the spice? 🙂 Also, The Confectional is a MUST stop, and oh boy–wait until you see their cute little cheesecakes! Absolutely to die for. Yes, I’m a bad influence. 😉



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