Friday, December 23, 2011

The Maltesers Holiday Hot Cocoa

Our favorite candy is a British candy called Maltesers, which I love to share and enjoy over the holidays. In the U. S. these would be known as malted milk balls but be of a far inferior quality, with a cheap, almost waxy, chocolate used in all the versions we have found and tried. Maltesers, on the other hand, are covered in a smooth, rich, creamy milk chocolate that melts in your mouth.

This year, we wondered if we could somehow use them to create a hot cocoa. We tried several approaches and finally hit upon the best.

Meanwhile, across the pond, we found this lad who was attempting the very same thing and immediately knew we would have to share it with our readers. Willy Wonka he is not. We found his potty-mouthed antics quite amusing, however. He basically does everything wrong, despite having all of the necessary equipment and ingredients. We knew we could learn from his mistakes and considered ourselves a step ahead in that we actually knew how to use an immersion blender. And people wonder why we attend those Cooking and Science lectures at Harvard!

We wonder if he knows about these? Maltesers does, indeed, make a cocoa mix packet for hot cocoa. It, however, is one of those cocoa mixes you blend with water. We did not like it at all. We did try the mix using half the hot water suggested then adding cream for the rest of the liquid once it was mixed. This provided a much creamier drink but still a bit gritty for our taste.

We used a chopper to pulverize the candy so finely that it was just about powder. We then whisked that, gradually, into a tall saucepan of water warming on the stove. We then used the very same model immersion blender (which we knew how to work) to froth the drink up. It turned out perfectly delicious, just like a liquid Malteser!

We also considered how to create the same flavor if absolutely no Maltesers were to be found. We finely chopped a Cadbury Milk Chocolate candy bar and, again, added that, gradually, to a second pan of warm milk. We then added Carnation Malted Milk powder, one level teaspoon at a time, until we achieved that rich, malty taste we were after. This actually worked surprisingly well and was much easier.

Happy Holidays Everybody! And, please, let us know about your own home cooking experiments.

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