When The Mr and I went to London in March of 2011, we had cold weather. Cold and windy and damp.
One haven of warmth was Harrod's.
If you haven't heard of it, Harrod's is a famous upscale department store which is known the world over as the purveyor of “all things for all people” and that includes animals. Apart from conventional pets such as cats, dogs, fish and birds, Harrods offers hamsters and mice for the less traditional.
But when the staff at London’s biggest department store was faced with a question from a man who was to later become President of the United States, they weren't the least shocked. They could have balked, of course, when Ronald Reagan asked a salesman at Harrods if they sell elephants, but more surprised was Mr. Reagan himself at the salesman’s immediate response – “Would that be Indian or African, sir?”
When we went to Harrod's, we didn't try to buy an elephant. I'm not certain how we would have gotten it through customs. And it probably would have put our suitcases over the weight limit.
We did go to the Chocolate Bar and taste their famous hot chocolate. And wow, it was worth it.
Fortunately for both my pocketbook and my waistline, we don't live near Harrod's. We tried to visit again when we were last in London, but they were too busy and we couldn't get in before it closed. My Mom was quite disappointed. I decided to try to reproduce it so that she could taste it when she came to visit at Christmas. And here's what I made:
Best Ever Hot Chocolate
- 9 ounces good quality milk chocolate (Harrod's uses Jivara chocolate, but I used a mixture of Godiva and Galaxy)
- 9 ounces full fat milk
- 1/4 cup light corn syrup
The basis of Harrods hot chocolate is a ganache mix, which can be made and then stored in the fridge for up to three days. Roughly chop the milk chocolate. Bring 9 ounces full-fat milk to boil, add corn syrup (this makes the ganache silky smooth) and stir. Pour the milk over the chopped chocolate and stir until it’s all melted. Store in the fridge until needed.
To make a thick chocolate drink, heat one espresso cup of the ganache per person in the microwave. Alternatively, for a lighter hot chocolate, dissolve 1-2 tsp ganache in a small cup of hot milk.
This is the most amazing drink. And my Mom loved it, which was icing on the cake! This would be wonderful on a cold winter evening - definitely worth the extra effort!