Is it too early to start making hot chocolate?
I don’t know. The sunny afternoons full of warmly colored leaves and temperatures reaching for 70 tell me yes. But as I sit here looking out at a now gloomily gray sky, shivering a bit even in my thick oversize knit sweater since the back door can’t seem to stay shut (super active littles) and chilly air creeps in, my mind is crying out NO! No it is not. Hot chocolate is appropriate any time you want it to be, and really, it is October. I think I’m safe.
Last weekend I made a gorgeous chocolate tart from my friend Alanna’s new cookbook, which I’ll be sharing next week. The tart was infused with earl grey tea. It was fabulous. The tea was steeped into the cream which turned into a chocolate flavored truffle filling. As I stood there, squeezing the cream soaked tea bags to extract every little drop of bergamot flavor them and into the cream, I realized: Why am I not doing this to EVERYTHING involving cream?! Well, that may be a little overboard, but I knew that a tea infused hot chocolate was happening asap.
And here it is.
Thick, dark hot chocolate scented with notes of bergamot and vanilla, topped with a maple sweetened whipped cream. I dusted a little bit of vanilla bean powder on top for a bit of interest, as well as a sprinkling of sea salt. Always sea salt on the hot chocolate. This recipe makes two large mugs of hot chocolate, or four smaller servings. Use a good quality chocolate for best results (though chocolate chips will always work in a pinch). If you use bittersweet chocolate, you may need to use a bit more maple syrup to sweeten.
- 1 cup Heavy Cream
- 1 cup Whole Milk
- ¼ cup + Maple Syrup
- ½ Vanilla Bean, split lengthwise
- ½ teaspoon Sea Salt
- 3-4 Bags Earl Grey Tea (use 4 bags for stronger flavor)
- 3 ounces Bittersweet or Dark Chocolate, chopped
- Whipped Cream, to top (sweeten with maple syrup)
- Vanilla Bean Powder, to garnish (optional)
- Place the cream, milk, maple syrup, vanilla bean, and sea salt in a saucepan and bring just to a boil. Remove from heat and place the tea bags in the mixture. Let steep for 10 minutes. Remove the tea bags from the saucepan, squeezing on the bags to extract as much flavor as possible. Discard Bags.
- Remove the vanilla beans from the saucepan.
- Add the chocolate to the saucepan and whisk over medium/high heat until chocolate is melted and mixture is steaming. Taste hot chocolate and add more maple syrup if a sweeter drink is desired.
- Pour into mugs and top with whipped cream and a small pinch of vanilla bean powder.
More Steamy Drinks?
Pumpkin Spice White Hot Chocolate
Mulled Spiced Concord Grape Cider
Trina Smith says
Fall treat at its best! Feeling cozy already!
Rhian @ Rhian's Recipes says
This sounds incredible! What an interesting combination of flavours, I’ll definitely be trying this out
heather (delicious not gorgeous) says
for all that i love earl grey and london fogs, i’ve never thought of combing them with chocolate! but it’s a pretty strong tea, so i bet it would hold up really nicely against the chocolate. and that cloud of whipped cream doesn’t hurt! (;
Thanks for this the other night, Love. It’s seriously delicious.
[email protected] says
Beautiful recipe & gorgeous photography! Can’t wait to try it.
Denisse | Le Petit Eats says
Wow. Your photography skills are on point! I love all the action shots and the dark, moodiness that so many of them convey…and all of your recipes look irresistible, especially this one that now has me craving cold weather, but living in SoCal I suppose I’ll have to wait a little while longer!
This looks great! And your photography style is gorgeous!!
I just made this tonight for my boyfriend and myself. OH MY… this taste like no other hot chocolate I’ve ever had, it’s definitely one of those gourmet hot chocolates I would have to pay $15 for. Earl grey is one of those teas I never became a fan of and my boyfriend simply doesnt like tea… like at all. So naturally I was afraid of making this drink. I played it safe and only used two tea bags and that was perfect for us!! He loved it so much he asked me to give him a detailed overview of how to make it so he can do it whenever ha ha!! The funniest part was when I mentioned he had to steep earl grey tea bags in the milk he said “there’s tea in this??!!” Thank you for sharing this recipe!!
Can vanilla extract be substituted for the bean? I can’t really justify spending $12 for one vanilla bean.
Oh goodness! I wouldn’t want to pay that much for a vanilla bean either! Yes! 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract should do the trick.
This hot chocolate sounds absolutely incredible even though here in brisbane it’s 28 degrees i still want to be sipping on this
Hygge at its best!
Me and my y family live hit chocolate and this looks and sounds incredibly divine☕☕