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Author Notes: Seriously, I feel like I’ve been missing something. Mexican chocolate. I mean I’ve had a Mexican hot chocolate before but have never experienced the pure form of it. The deliciously sugary, cinnamony thick tablets of sweet dark chocolate. It’s a serious love affair, and I’m going to find more and more reasons to sneak these into desserts…or my morning coffee. You’ve been warned – forgoing the recipe in favor of just eating the chocolate did not seem like an outlandish option after the first bite.
Atoles are a group of masa-based Mexican and Central American hot drinks with champurrado a specifically chocolate one. The drink consists of water or milk with masa, spices like cinnamon and/or anise, and chocolate in the case of champurrado. The masa acts as a thickening agent to create a drink that can range in thickness from a pudding-like consistency to a thinner liquid.
- 4 cups milk
- 2 tablets Mexican chocolate, chopped into little pieces
- 1/3 cup masa harina
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1/2 vanilla bean, split and scraped (optional)
- In a saucepan, warm 1 cup of milk on low (want it warm enough to melt the chocolate). Pour into blender and add chocolate pieces and masa harina. Blend on high for 30 seconds, and strain back into the saucepan.
- Add remaining milk and ingredients and heat on medium-low. You want to slowly bring the mixture up. Once the mixture begins to bubble, reduce heat to low and let simmer 10 minutes until it thickens and the cinnamon and vanilla have infused. Serve immediately!