It’s the challenge of every party planner during winter months: how to keep your guests warm and comfortable? Even a short outdoor cocktail hour can have guests feeling chilled and looking for a warm place indoors to shake off the winter air. Need some winter party planning ideas? For your next winter event, try serving a gourmet hot chocolate bar and allow guests to make a take-home custom hot chocolate creation.
- 2 cups granulated sugar
3 tbs. cornstarch or arrowroot powder
9 oz. semi-sweet chocolate baking bar
2 cups cocoa powder
1 tsp. vanilla
1/4 tsp. sea salt
Directions: Mix ingredients in a food processor and gently pulse until you achieve a fine powdery consistency.
Gourmet Hot Chocolate Recipe: Your guests will use a ratio of 3 tbs. cocoa mix for each medium-sized mug with approximately 6 oz. of warm milk.
To create different gourmet flavor options for your hot chocolate bar, simply adjust the base recipe by removing the vanilla and adding the flavor you desire.
- For Mint dark chocolate: add 1- 1/2 tsp mint flavoring in place of the vanilla
- For a Mexican hot chocolate: add 1/4 tsp chili or cayenne pepper
- For a caramel flavor: add 1 tsp caramel flavor
Fill various glass jars with your different gourmet selections and label well! Add a 1 tbs. to each jar for easy measurements. Set your hot chocolate bar with a selection of warm milk such as almond milk, regular 2% dairy, or even coconut milk. Instruct your guests to fill their mug first with their choice of warm milk. Then add 3 tbs. of your hot chocolate mix and stir well. They may choose to add several options to their cup to dress up their hot chocolate, making it gourmet.
Hot Chocolate topping ideas:
- Pieces of chopped toffee candy
Andes mint pieces
- Candy canes
- Toasted coconut shreds
Provide your guests with small cellophane bags and a decorative twist tie to tightly close the bag. Include a card they can slip onto their twist tie with preparation instructions reading: 3 tbs. per 6 oz. of warm milk.
Keep your guests warm this winter with more than just a crackling fire. Add a fun twist with your own gourmet hot chocolate bar!