Chocolate for the Holidays


ChocolateForHolidaysBy Adrianna Zampieri

What do you think of when you hear the words “holiday season?” Do you think of being snuggled up in blankets near a roaring fire with a nice mug of hot chocolate? So do we. With the weather cooling down and the holiday season upon us, it’s time to break out your mugs and cook up some delicious hot chocolate.

Candy Cane Hot Chocolate

There’s nothing better than chocolate and peppermint, so combine the two distinct flavors to create one mouth-watering treat. Candy cane-infused hot chocolate will be sure to satisfy your sweet tooth while warming you up.

What You Need:

  • 4 cups milk
  • 3 (1 oz) squares semisweet chocolate, chopped
  • 4 peppermint candy canes, crushed
  • 1 cup whipped cream
  • 4 small peppermint candy canes

How to Do It:

  1. In a saucepan, heat milk until hot, but not boiling.
  2. Whisk in the chocolate and the crushed peppermint candies until melted and smooth.
  3. Pour hot cocoa into four mugs, and garnish with whipped cream.
  4. Serve each with a candy cane stirring stick.

Caramel Hot Chocolate

For a more classic taste, combine caramel and chocolate. This creamy creation will be a favorite as the temperature keeps cooling down into sweater-weather.

What You Need:

  • 2 cups milk
  • 1½ cups of half and half (part cream part milk)
  • 6 tbsp unsweetened cocoa
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ¼ cup caramel sauce

How to Do It:

  1. Combine all ingredients in a large saucepan. Stir until smooth and hot.
  2. Pour into mugs.
  3. Garnish with whipped cream, caramel and coarse sea salt.

Aggie Coasters

If you’re going to be indulging in hot chocolate, you’re going to need some coasters, too. Here’s a tutorial for a set of Texas A&M coasters, but you can personalize it to your heart’s content. Instead of using Aggie-themed paper, use a colorful pattern, holiday snowflakes, or even use old photos you may have lying around. Make a couple of different sets for yourself or make some to give away as gifts. Either way, handmade coasters are an easy and useful project to complete in your spare time.

What You Need:

  • 4 4-by-4-inch white tiles
  • 4 4-by-4-inch pieces of the Texas A&M patterned paper
  • Scissors
  • Mod Podge
  • Foam brush
  • Clear spray sealant
  • Felt
  • Hot glue gun

How to Do It:

  1. Buy four small, white tiles from your local hardware store.
  2. Select the patterned paper you would like to use. You can visit your local craft store, or find them on the Internet and print them off. Cut the paper into four 4-by-4-inch squares to fit on the top of your tile.
  3. Wipe off the surface of your titles to ensure they are clean.
  4. Then using the foam brush, paint a thin layer of Mod Podge on top of the tile. Center and place a square of patterned paper to the tile. Press down firmly and use your fingers to smooth it down and remove any air bubbles.
  5. Allow this bottom layer of Mod Podge to dry before applying a couple of more coats on top of the paper as instructed on the bottle of Mod Podge.
  6. Once all of the Mod Podge is completely dry, spray a quick coat of sealant.
  7. Last, cut out four small squares of felt to glue on the bottom of each coaster. This will keep the tile coasters from scratching your coffee table.
  8. Enjoy using your handmade coasters on those chilly nights when you whip up some hot chocolate.


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