Marie Antoinette – the Queen with her own Chocolate Maker – started each morning with a wee tass of hot chocolate. Decades earlier, Louis XV and his mistresses looked to hot chocolate for an aphrodisiac boost. In 1755, Menon captured this Louis’ recipe.
‘Place an equal number of bars of chocolate and cups of water in a cafetière and boil on a low heat for a short while; when you are ready to serve, add one egg yolk for four cups and stir over a low heat without allowing to boil. It is better if prepared a day in advance. Those who drink it every day should leave a small amount as flavouring for those who prepare it the next day. Instead of an egg yolk one can add a beaten egg white after having removed the top layer of froth. Mix in a small amount of chocolate from the cafetière then add to the cafetière and finish as with the egg yolk.’
These days most of us will ixnay on the added yolks, but if you are looking to melt some of your own drinking chocolate, Yaletown’s Xoxolat is a delicious source. Stir some dark chocolate circles into your boiling water or milk, thicken to your liking.
Xoxolat, founded by Hodie Rondeau, creates their own chocolate line along with importing single origin, ethically-made chocolate from around the world. They first opened in 2007 under the name Monde Chocolat. They have also become rather well-known for their collection of chocolate shoes.
Written by Elizabeth Newton
Photo: Cup of Water and a Rose on a Silver Plate. Francisco de Zurbarán. 1630