Pumpkin spice hot chocolate (Vegan)

IMG_5082

Tools: Saucepan, whisk

Preparation time: 5 minutes

Ingredients: 1 cup milk of choice (I’m using original cashew milk)

4 tbsp. water

4 tbsp. sugar

2 tbsp. cocoa powder

pumpkin pie spice: 1 tsp. dried ground cinnamon, 1/2 tsp. ginger, 1/8 tsp nutmeg, 1/8 tsp clove

1 tsp. vanilla extract

Garnish: Marshmallows

Method: Whisk together sugar, water,  spices, and cocoa powder over medium heat. Once mixture has come together uniformly, add milk. Whisk together until milk has warmed, remove from heat. Finish with vanilla extract. Garnish with marshmallows.

Variations:

Butterscotch hot chocolate: omit pumpkin pie spices, finish with 1 shot butterscotch schnapps after removed from heat

Peppermint hot chocolate: Omit pumpkin pie spices, finish with 1 shot peppermint schnapps after removed from heat

Traditional hot chocolate: Omit pumpkin pie spices

Mayan hot chocolate: add 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper to spices

Use any sweetener you wish- honey, maple syrup, agave nectar…

Want to know a secret? I love rainy days.

Growing up, I lived in very sunny, hot places. There was almost never snow, and rain became a sought after occurrence. When I went to college in New Mexico the first thing I did was spring out of bed (okay, stumble) and look out my window, hoping for a cloudy day to break up the relentless sun.

Sunny days obligate me to do things like put on real pants. Leave the house. And when I don’t there’s a consuming feeling of guilt. Why didn’t I make the most of this beautiful weather?

Give me a rainy day anytime. I can snuggle with my warm baby, his gentle snores chuffing away. We can linger in the warm bath while he joyously splashes.

I thought the European classics were written with ‘mood weather’ included. Frankenstein’s monster skulks in damp castle corners. Sherlock pulls up his collar to keep out the wet as he researches clues. Heathcliff haunts the misty moors in agony for his lover.

It turns out, it’s just what the weather is actually like.In Germany, Britain, and Ireland, it is cloudy and rainy 70 percent of the time. There is of course, a balance to my rain appreciation. Trudging through sludge day after day could get monotonous, and Vitamin D deficient.

When we visited Ireland the first greeting we got was , “Isn’t it lovely weather we’re having?” Outside it was all clouds and threatening rain, imagine our confusion. Over the course of the week anytime it wasn’t raining, cloudy or sunny, this was the standard greeting. Ireland is so green because it is almost always raining. I love the relentless, dogged, optimism of the Irish people to enjoy every moment even if it their pleasure can be snuffed out at any moment. Theirs is a spirit forged by hardship where they have come out determined to be happy.

When you snuggle up with this hot chocolate, enjoy the lovely weather you’re having. Even if it might not be what you have chosen for yourself. Take a lesson from the Irish and choose to be happy for whatever you do have. And maybe don’t put on real pants.

See my recipes on Pinterest!

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