Peanut Butter Hot Chocolate

I love that famous peanut butter/chocolate duo. Aah! A marriage made in heaven! I found a recipe for  peanut butter hot chocolate at Stumble Upon. My daughter-in-law clued me in about Stumble Upon a while ago. You can find lots of interesting things there.

I’m so in to hot chocolate lately, but I go the simple route. I use a packet of the Swiss Miss brand. It’s between 30 to 50 calories – depending on which combination you choose – low-fat, fat-free, sugar-free, etc. How low do you want to go? I’m not touting it as a healthful food. It isn’t perfect, but it does provide as much calcium as an 8 oz. glass of milk? That’s 30% of your daily calcium requirements. It has powered skim milk in it, after all. However, it isn’t the hot chocolate the moms of the fifties used to make – with whole milk, powered cocoa and sugar, but it isn’t bad.

Even though I love peanut butter with chocolate, I’m also a purist at heart, and I do love my plain old hot chocolate, but I think I’ll try this one. I know someone who loves the peanut butter/chocolate combination. Maybe she’ll try it first and let me know.

Creamy Peanut Butter Hot Chocolate

If you want it salted, add a pinch of flaky sea salt at the end.

1/4 cup sugar or honey
1/4 cup cocoa
1/4 cup water
3 cups 2% or whole milk
2-4 Tbsp. creamy peanut butter
3 oz. bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped (Lindt 70% cocoa is great)

In a saucepan, stir together the sugar and cocoa to get rid of lumps; stir in the water until smooth, then whisk in the milk over medium-high heat. Heat until steaming. Remove the pan from the heat and add the peanut butter and chocolate. Let it sit for a few seconds, then blend it with a hand-held immersion blender. Or for individual cups, divide the chocolate among the cups and pour the warm milk overtop. Whiz with one of those little frothers to make it very smooth and foamy.

A wire whisk will blend everything together, but a hand-held immersion blender does an even better job of emulsifying everything to a perfect smoothness that won’t separate. Top with whipped cream or marshmallows, if you like. And do share – ’tis the season.

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