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Top 10 amazing hot chocolate recipes 1st November 2014

The best things about being outside is taking a flask of hot chocolate to warm up and act as a reward for outdoor exertion. You can of course use the powdered variety but we urge you to try our awesome real hot chocolate recipe and then pep it up as you wish with one of our variations. See below for our top 10 - better than anything you will find in the shops.

1. Awesome real hot chocolate
• 250mls milk
• 50g good quality dark chocolate (70–100% cocoa solids) grated
• Sugar to taste
• 1 pinch sea salt

Pour the milk into a large pan and bring almost to the boil over a medium heat. Stir in the chocolate until it has melted and the milk has thickened slightly. Add sugar to taste and a small pinch of sea salt. Don’t let the mixture boil once you have added the chocolate. Beat with a whisk to get a creamy head. For an extra decadent treat stir in a tablespoon of double cream. There are the obvious ingredients you can add to hot chocolate such as marshmallows and whipped cream but we thought you could stretch your taste buds a little further with the following suggestions:

2. Cinnamon hot chocolate
Add a cinnamon stick to the milk as it warms and remove it just before drinking.

3. Nutmeg hot chocolate
Grate fresh nutmeg over the surface of your hot chocolate.

4. Mexican style spicy hot chocolate
Spice it up a bit by adding a dried chilli to the milk as it warms. Remove the chilli before drinking. You can also add the heat by using dark chilli chocolate.

5. Cardamon scented hot chocolate
This amazing intense aroma adds an earthy, flowery, comforting flavour to hot chocolate. Crush two cardamom pods and add when warming the milk. You will need to pour the hot choc through a strainer before drinking.

6. Nutella hot chocolate
The perfect recipe for camping as the nutella can be used for a multitude of simple recipes. Instead of using the recipe above just add 2 ½ tablespoons of nutella, 1 tablespooon of cocoa and a tiny pinch of salt to a cup of milk.

7. Really warming hot chocolate for grown ups
Add a nip (or more if you wish) of rum or brandy to give you that doubly warm feeling inside.

8. Mocha hot chocolate
Add 1 cup of freshly made espresso coffee for your caffeine chocolate kick.

9. Baileys hot chocolate
Another one for the grown ups... Add Baileys to taste.

10. Peppermint hot chocolate
Give each person a candy cane to stir their hot chocolate to give as much sweet peppermint flavour as desired.

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