The New “Hot Cocoa”
Milk with Hershey’s syrup warmed up to my boys is like Tinleigh needing her bottle first thing or me needing coffee first thing. Gage has gone a full week with out it. It’s been so hard for him fighting his addiction. Ever watch a 4-year-old go through withdraw?
I have tried and tried to make him something similar. Using coconut milk though the taste just can’t be the same. I’ve been making his coconut milk myself instead of buying it. I don’t want to risk having it cross contaminated with almonds or coming from Thailand and them not having to label their can with anything potentially dangerous to Gage.
Here’s the coconut milk recipe I follow: homemade coconut milk
• 2 cups unsweetened coconut flakes ( I use sweetened)
• 2 cups hot (not boiling) water
• 2 cups water
• 1 teaspoon vanilla (I omit this)
• 2 tablespoons local honey (I omit this too)
1. In a large bowl, soak the coconut in hot (not boiling) water for about 20 minutes.
2. Pour soaked coconut with its water, the remaining water, vanilla, and honey into the blender. Blend on high until mixed well.
3. In a large bowl, strain the liquid through a cheesecloth or nut milk bag. (I used a small wire strainer)
4. Store milk in mason jars and place them in the refrigerator. It should keep for about 3 days. (I just put mine in a plastic pitcher with lid.)
5. Serve and enjoy!
Basically I just use the water and sweetened coconut flakes. It’s sweet enough that way, you don’t need to add the vanilla or honey. I will try it with unsweetened at some point. I just had sweetened in the fridge. The first two small batches I made I did use the vanilla and honey and it was just way too sweet.
Onto the cocoa! This was actually hard to figure out. A little cocoa with some sugar and BOOM hot cocoa! Not the case. Because the coconut milk already has sweetness to it I kept over doing it with the sugar. Then I tried it with no sugar and it was bitter cocoa. I finally had to make an actual syrup for it to taste right. Thank you again to my friend Rachel for finding the perfect recipe. I had some other friends pass along recipes as well, thank you!
This specific recipe comes from Pennies on a Platter.
I followed this to a T.
- 1 cup water
- 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 cups sugar
- Pinch of salt
- ¼ teaspoon vanilla
Combine the water and cocoa powder in a medium saucepan. Heat over medium while stirring to dissolve the cocoa. Stir in the sugar until dissolved. Bring to a boil and heat for 3 minutes. Make sure the baby on your hip doesn’t distract you from the 3 minute time limit like mine did! It almost boiled over. Remove from the heat and mix in the salt and vanilla. Let set to cool.
I mixed 1-1/2 tbsp into Gage’s coconut milk and warmed it up for the standard 30 seconds.
As you can see Gage didn’t like it at first. Then Charlie tasted it and started to finish the glass. Gage quickly grabbed it away from him and decided he liked it too. PHEW! Thank you big brother for saving the day. Gage finished the cup and successfully had some again this morning. He doesn’t love it but it will have to do for now. Imagine drinking mocha coffee everyday for 2 years then one day having to switch to coconut mocha coffee. It wouldn’t be the same but you have to accept it.
Here’s to homemade coconut milk and chocolate syrup!