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Mexican Hot Chocolate- St. Juan Diego- December 9

Updated: Oct 4, 2023

When I cook or bake for feast days I like to tap into the culture of my family, and the saint being celebrated, as much as I can. I do this because I want our liturgical living to be intentional and authentic to who we are as a family. I also want to put in the extraordinary effort that liturgical living at times asks of us in imitation of the highest liturgical form, the Mass, which also requires great work.

I have found from experience, that the most memorable traditions come from the instances when everyone gets involved and pitches in to express joy for a feast day. My family used to come together around Christmastime every year to make hot chocolate, sit around the table, and just enjoy one another. I'm sure your family has these experiences too, and if not, it's never too late to start!

For the feast of St. Juan Diego, I went back to my own family's hispanic cultural traditions, so we are going to make Mexican hot chocolate. This recipe does require a bit more attention than sprinkling cocoa powder into warm milk. However, I appreciate that, as it not only embodies some of the principles of liturgical theology that I mentioned earlier, but it's also darn good.

If you really want to make this in a truly authentic way, you could purchase a molinillo in advance which is used to make Mexican hot chocolate frothy. The texture is something that you might not be used to, since it is packed with spices it tends to be more grainy. To achieve the richer taste, you are going to use a more bitter chocolate which will harmonize beautifully with the cinnamon, nutmeg, and my secret ingredient.

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Total Time: 10 minutes

Yields: 4 Servings

The Ingredients

  1. 4 cups milk

  2. 3 oz Ghirardelli 60% cacao bittersweet chocolate chips (about 1/2 cup)

  3. 1/2 tbsp vanilla extract

  4. 1/2 tsp nutmeg

  5. 1/2 tsp cinnamon

  6. Secret Ingredient: 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper

Once you drink this authentic hot chocolate, you'll never want a Swiss Miss packet again. Let's begin!

Pour 4 cups milk (or alternative like almond, coconut, cashew, soy, etc.) into a saucepan over medium heat.

Then infuse the milk with your spices for a minimum of 10 minutes, up to 1 hour. I usually just do 10 minutes but if you allow for more time then you have a better chance of pulling out those delicious seasonal flavors.

Pour in 1/2 tbsp vanilla extract, 1/2 tsp nutmeg, 1/2 tsp cinnamon, and 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper. As this is simmering whisk the spices together until they are mostly combined.

Once that is complete you will measure out 3 ounces, or 1/2 cup, of the bittersweet chocolate chips and pour them into the milk. Whisk until the chocolate is completely melted and blended in.

This hot chocolate slightly more grainy due to all the fresh spices we used. If this is not something appealing to you then as you are serving, pour the hot chocolate through a sieve and into the mugs.

Just writing this is giving me a craving for that feel good, cold weather, homey beverage.

Garnish the drink with a dollop of cool whip and a cinnamon stick. This is what perfection looks like!

Happy feasting this Advent and Christmas.

Did you make this recipe? If so I would love to see it, drop a picture in the comment or send it to me on social media Facebook @HisGirlSunday or Instagram @steffani_hisgirlsunday.

For more liturgical living resources check out the blog section of my website or follow me on Facebook to see what Catholic things I am doing to celebrate feast days.

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