Red-Hot Hot Chocolate

The calendar may say it’s spring, but really, a winter warmer is in order for this weekend. I can try my best to think tropical thoughts, but as my scarf, boots, and long wooly coat continue to get a workout these days, I’m really thinking a warm mug of “infused” hot chocolate is the call for this frigid “March Madness” we’ve been having.

And if you plan to catch some of the “sporting” March Madness and kick back with basketball games, this will be a nice change of pace after the beer and snacks and such. For a party, make a big pot of cocoa and keep it warm in a slow cooker. Guests can add their own rum to mugs and have fun garnishing. Plan ahead—you’ll need to make the cinnamon spiced rum a day in advance. Cheers!
 

Red-Hot Hot Chocolate

Makes 1 cocktail

3 Tbsp. dark or bittersweet high-quality chocolate sauce
4 oz. milk
1 1/2 oz. Red Hot Spice Rum (recipe follows)

Garnish: whipped cream, Red Hot candies and shaved chocolate (optional)

Mix together chocolate sauce and milk in small saucepan. Place over medium heat until very hot, but not scalding. (Or microwave for about 1-1 1/2 minutes.) Then measure and stir in the rum. Top with whipped cream and garnish with cinnamon candies and shaved chocolate, if desired.
 

Red Hot Spice Rum

Makes 2 cups (enough for about 10 drinks)

2 c. Captain Morgan Original Spiced Rum
1/3 c. cinnamon candies

Place rum and candies into glass jar. Cover tightly and shake well. Let set for one day or overnight, shaking jar periodically. Once candies are dissolved, place liquor into a pretty bottle and seal. Store at room temperature.

Recipes by mixologist Kathy Casey from Drinks magazine.

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Mary Subialka
Mary Subialka is the editor of Real Food and Drinks magazines, covering the flavorful world of food, wine and spirits. She rarely meets a chicken she doesn’t like, and hopes that her school-age son, who used to eat beets and Indian food, will one day again think of real food as more than a means to a treat—and later share this with his younger brother.