'Indulge & Heal' Hot Chocolate

You know when you want that delicious, rich, dark, deep and malty kind of a hot chocolate? The kind that you want to eat with chunky oatmeal cookies as you sit in front of the fire place snuggled up reading a book? Well this is one such recipe. And, what is more is that I have the perfect dunk-worthy oatmeal cookie recipe up on the blog, too (it is the previous post to this). This warm, soothing cacao drink is a beautiful one. It is decadent, it is sweet (you can make it less sweet if you reeeeally want) and it is soul-soothingly indulgent – yet uber healthy. Win? WIN. This serves 3 small tea-cup sized cups OR, 2 medium mugs OR one uber ambitious cacao-lover.

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One thing I absolutely just LOVE about plants is how you can literally turn any old classic recipe into something that is 100 times more nutritious, simple to make, often more affordable and totally YUM. What’s more is that you have total peace of mind in knowing that you don’t have to give up on your health in order to indulge in something sweet and decadent. Not only that, but that it is actually doing amazing things for you!

 

Did you know that pure raw cacao powder is one of the highest sources ever recorded of antioxidants? Why are anti-oxidants important? Well, essentially anti-oxidants help to protect the body against free radicals which to put VERY simply, damage DNA, collagen and muscle tissue. Free radicals are produced by the body when it is under stress (especially during intensive, strenuous exercise) as well as (apparently) from sun-exposure and the natural aging process. Raw cacao is also the richest source of plant-based iron; so for vegans looking to up their intake of iron, look no further than a raw cacao smoothie or date ball or this delicious malty, warming hot chocolate (see how I snuck that in there ;)). To get the most out of the iron in raw cacao it is suggested that you eat it with a high in Vitamin-C food such as goji berries, granadilla, strawberries, or citrus. Raw cacao is also one of the richest sources of plant-based magnesium – which helps in heart & brain function. It is also high in calcium! And of COURSE, last but certainly not least: it is an incredibly effective mood elevator and deep comforting force to be reckoned with. Need I give you ANY more reasons to go to your kitchen RIGHT now to make this delicious silky smooth, delectable hot chocolate?

 

Ingredients:

o   1 cup of filtered water

o   1 cup of unsweetened soy milk (or another plant based milk of choice)

o   3 tablespoons of raw cacao powder

o   1.5-2 tablespoons of sweet molasses (or another sweetener of choice)

o   2 teaspoons of raw Peruvian maca root powder

o   1 teaspoon of tahini (this may sound strange but it adds such a delicious malty flavor and richness) 

o   ½ teaspoon of cinnamon, ground

o   15-20 drops of stevia liquid (I used 20 and it was perfect for my taste buds)

o   Small pinch of sea salt

 

Method:

1.      Heat the water and soy milk together in a small pot on the stove. Add the sweeteners and cinnamon and stir until well combined.

2.      Now add in the rest of your ingredients – stirring continuously until all of the cacao powder and maca powder are clump-free and the hot chocolate is warm and bubbling and has thickened slightly. The more time mine spent on the stove, the thicker it got. Also: make sure it really is clump-free because initially I thought mine was and it was a pale brown color and then when I poured it into the mugs I realized half the cacao was at the bottom of the pot! However, you also don't want it to boil as the heat can damage some of the heat-sensitive nutrients in the raw superfoods. 

3.      Serve in three small tea cups OR in two big mugs. Serve with these oatmeal cookies (recommendation: heat the cookies up if you haven’t just baked them freshly by placing in a toaster or oven and then dip them in some extra tahini and a pinch of salt). THIS IS HEAVEN. You’re so very welcome.  

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