Hasslacher’s Hot Drinking Chocolate was a product I knew nothing about until about 2 pm this afternoon. It is the highlight of the happy 20 minutes spent squandering a £10 gift card on lovely things I didn’t need, and it was the last one on the shelf; meant for me.
Everything about it is lovely. See the packaging: super-strong sugar cane fibre paper, like contraband smuggled out of Columbia. Inside, wax paper protects the brick of chocolate. Check the striped backdrop, and the label printed at an angle, like an old-time flier pasted on. Love it. And man was it hard to open. I resorted to scissors to get the cacao back in afterwards.
250 g solid 100% cacao, no sugar, no milk, no nothing. Just pure chocolate in two hefty bars.
It recommends two squares (read: massive bricks) for a mug of hot milk.
Getting the drink together is a little labour of love; a process where every action is because you love what will come from it.
Melt the chocolate blocks very slowly on the base of the saucepan – low heat, and move them around so they don’t catch. When the bricks have become shiny brown liquid ooze, pour cold milk on the situation, and turn up the heat. Add sugar to taste. Whisk or stir as the chocolate melts.
There’s an area in my brain that I associate with addictions. When I eat something that hits all the feel-good notes, I get a sense of pressure slightly above my temples. Olives. Chocolate. It’s probably the release of serotonin. Whatever the biological reason for it, this Columbian solid hot drinking chocolate strikes that exact note.