Are there things that send me into an absolute tiz around the holidays? Yep, but that’s nothing particular to this time of year. There’s lots of things, all year round, that turn my thong into a twisted set of anal beads faster than any stupid holiday related thing. (Bad drivers, whiners…) That is, unless you’re talking about egg nog. What in the hell is a nog anyway? Try looking it up in any culinary dictionary…it’s just not there. I have an extreme dislike of egg nog. Not that it’s ever done anything bad to me, there’s just something about the flavor and consistency that just makes me want to gag. Even though the poster child of holiday cocktails has rum in it, it’s still not enough to save it for me.
My holiday cocktail of choice is hot chocolate. Yeah, I know, hot chocolate isn’t a cocktail. It is in my hands! Hot chocolate takes me back to my childhood days (yes, I too was an innocent child once upon a time – no, I was not hatched or birthed by a bottle of bourbon), lugging a sled up the hill in the neighborhood I grew up in. Our sledding hill was the embankment of a sewer plant. (Wow, as I just typed that I realized how gross that sounds – for the very first time.) Winters in Cleveland meant everything containing even the smallest amount of moisture was frozen rock solid (including the inside of your nose), so our sledding run did not smell. “Suicide Runs” were everyone’s favorite. One person on a plastic sled came down one hill and another person on one of those ‘fancy’ wooden sleds with metal runners came down the other hill at the same time. The challenge was to do this without running into each other. And this wasn’t like chicken, to see who would flinch and move out of the way first. This was barreling full speed ahead and praying that we were able to line ourselves up properly by using our keen eyesight and gloved hands to draw the perfect imaginary line we would be flying down and pass each other at the bottom with only inches to spare. We all loved that run and all got at least one good scare from it. I got an emergency room visit out it one time. Oops! Sorry mom for making you sit in the emergency room all day Super Bowl Sunday.
We weren’t the brightest kids, but somehow we all survived. And no one’s parents were charged with child endangerment.
Anyway, after a long day of sledding, someone’s mother would make us hot chocolate with those tiny little marshmallows floating in it. The ice would melt off our feet (puddling on the floor) and our noses would turn from Rudolph red to a healthy pink again as we sipped.
We’ve all grown up now and don’t go sledding anymore. In fact, most of the old group doesn’t even live in a snowy area anymore. I guess we were smarter than we thought – we were smart enough to move out of the cold and yuck. But I admit, I do still like to visit the snow from time to time. Even I need a break from the sun and surf from time to time. So after a long day of skiing a cup of hot chocolate takes me right back to my sledding childhood. Since I’ve grown up, my tastes have changed a little bit though. Now I like spiked flavored hot chocolate…and my favorite flavored hot chocolate involves Chambord.
You can add this libation to my list of Chambord cocktails that I really enjoy. The raspberry flavor is subtle, so it’s a drink that you can sip and enjoy for a while.
I know I’m probably going to be tied up and whipped by my food blogger brethren, don’t tell them I enjoy it, so here goes. I usually make hot chocolate from scratch (it’s almost as easy as pouring it out of an envelope), but when you mix alcohol with it and put some nice topping on it like homemade whipped cream or marshmallow fluff, you can absolutely use instant hot chocolate – just be sure to make it with milk.
There are lots of hot chocolate recipes out there, but I’ll give you a simple one that you can whip up in no time. Top your Chambord hot chocolate with whipped cream or marshmallow fluff. I’ll even give you a simple recipe for marshmallow fluff. It is the season for giving after all.
This is just a quick one today and it’s for the benefit of all you singles out there.
Dear couples –
I am single. Yes, I am full capable of admitting that I am single. So when I come to your dinner or holiday party without a date, let’s not make a big deal about it. Consider for a moment that there is a reason why I am single. It’s either because I have chosen to not be with anyone for now (or ever) or others have made the decision for me, that I will be single. I do not need you telling me that I need to find someone (especially after I’ve just watched you de-humanize that person you claim to love). Again, I am fully aware of my status. If I had a problem with my singledom, I would not have accepted your invitation and I would have stayed home either drowning my sorrows with a bottle of Jack and a bag of Cheetos or pleasuring myself while watching pay-per-view.
While I appreciate you thinking of me, since we are friends and all, this is not the season of sympathy and it’s not the season of giving me the desire to leave a flaming bag of poop on your doorstep for setting me up with your cousin whose bestest friends are their pet iguana and the woman on QVC from 11pm – 4am.
Your Single Friend
Chambord Flavored Hot Chocolate Recipe
Hot Chocolate Recipe adapted from DineandDish.net
Makes 6 servings
- 6 Tablespoons Sugar
- 6 Cups Milk
- 2 Teaspoons Vanilla Bean Paste (or the seeds from 2 vanilla beans)
- 8 Ounces Semisweet Chocolate (chopped)
- 2 Tablespoons Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
- 4 1/2 Ounces Chambord Liquer
In a saucepan, bring milk to a simmer over medium heat.
Once simmering, stir in vanilla.
Reduce heat to low and add chopped chocolate, cocoa and sugar. Whisk until smooth.
Pour 3/4 ounce Chambord into glass or mug and fill with hot cocoa.
Marshmallow Fluff Recipe
Makes a lot!
- 3 Tablespoons Egg Whites
- 1 Cup Light Corn Syrup
- 1/4 Teaspoon Salt
- 1 Cup Confectioners Sugar
- 1 1/2 Teaspoons Vanilla Extract*
In a large bowl combine egg whites, corn syrup and salt.
Beat with mixer on high speed for 10 minutes or until thick.
Add in the confectioners sugar and beat on low speed until blended.
Beat in vanilla until well blended.
Spoon on top of the Chambord hot chocolate and serve.
The remaining fluff can be refrigerated for up to one week in a covered container. Stir before serving.
* You could replace the vanilla with Chambord to add more raspberry flavor to the drink.
**Please note, this is a somewhat runny fluff, you won’t be making big fluffy marshmallow presentations with this.