Abigail O’Neill of Model Chocolate shares her tips and recipes for the healthy alternative to the classic winter warmer.
Try Abigail’s raw, vegan Supergorgeous Almond Mylk – a creamy refined sugar free, dairy free milk option that you can create yourself at home in no time using only a blender and a nut milk bag (available at good health food stores). Otherwise, simply use milk of your choice.
image via pinterest
Abigail O’Neill’s Supergorgeous Almond Mylk Recipe:
Raw. Alkaline. Superfood. Perfect anywhere you’d use dairy milk.
1½ cups organic raw almonds
6 cups of water
1–2 tablespoons raw agave or 4 medjool dates
¼ teaspoon vanilla powder
¼ teaspoon cinnamon powder
Pinch sea salt
Method: Rinse almonds well and dates if using, drain. Soak in 3 cups of water 4 hours or overnight. Blend until creamy. Add remaining water and all other ingredients and blend again until fine and milky. Strain through a nut milk bag or an extra fine sieve over a wide jug or bowl. Keep in a sealable glass jug or bottle in the fridge. This delicious Raw Mylk is best consumed within 4 days. It may separate so stir before use.
4 hours soaking time + 10 minutes preparation. Makes over 1 litre.
Hit The Spot Hot Cacao Recipe
Enjoy experimenting with a few different flavour options to custom make your own gourmet cup of hot cacao.
⅓ of your mug size Supergorgeous Almond Mylk, or milk of your choice
Generous pinch of vanilla powder, may use scraped vanilla bean or natural vanilla extract
2 teaspoons raw cacao powder
1–2 teaspoons coconut sugar, maple syrup, raw unrefined honey, or sweetener of your choice
⅔ cup boiling water
Place Mylk into a large mug, add dry ingredients along with any optional flavourings from the list below. Use an Aerolatte/milk frother to whip Mylk, cacao and flavourings together until frothy. Top up with boiling water. Stir lightly, sprinkle with extra cacao. Perfect!
2 minutes to make. Serves one.
Try one of Abigail’s 10 healthy and delicious flavour variations:
White Hot Chocolate with Nutmeg: Base this recipe on 100% Supergorgeous Almond Mylk instead of part water, heating it in a small saucepan gently with 1 – 2 teaspoons cacao butter shavings a pinch of cinnamon, vanilla and 1 – 2 pinches of ground nutmeg. Sweeten with raw honey to taste.
Carob Delight: Use some carob powder in place of part of the raw cacao as both a sweetener and for the extra nutrient benefits of carob. Carob has a lovely synergy when used with raw cacao.
Coconut-Peppermint: Try using tablespoon, or two, if you really want it rich, of organic coconut cream in place of Almond Mylk. Omit vanilla and replace very carefully with 1 drop of pure essential oil of peppermint. Be sure to cream ingredients together well before filling your mug with hot water. Peppermint is an excellent digestion tonic, refreshing and rich in essential fats.
Jaffa: Add in a pinch of cinnamon + ½ teaspoon super-finely grated organic orange rind OR very carefully, 1 drop of pure essential oil of orange in the whipping Mylk and cacao together stage. Orange boasts antidepressant benefits, which are quadrupled when combined with raw cacao.
Hormonal Balance: Try 1/2 – 1 teaspoon of pure organic ‘maca’ root powder added in with the raw cacao. Surprisingly delicious and perfect for those off days! Maca is rich in trace minerals and has hormone balancing properties, made even better coupled with raw cacao.
Mocha: 1 shot of organic coffee added into the mix as part of the hot water content. For a caffeine free mocha flavoured option try a dandelion root shot or cereal coffee instead. This option is great for an extra energy boost for a big day ahead or if using dandelion, a wonderful tonic herb for the liver and kidneys while treating your tastebuds!
Turkish Delight: Add 1 – 2 teaspoons pure rosewater to the original brew and 1/2 teaspoon strawberry jam, yes jam! OR 1/2 teaspoon freeze-dried strawberry powder! Magic. Taste-bud-tantalising goodness!
Sea Salt: Try adding in pinch of fine Sea Salt to the mug, rich in minerals and sure to bring out the flavours of the cacao and enhance slight caramel tones. Sea salt also has it’s own valuable trace minerals which complement the mineral rich cacao.
Chai Spice: Use one pinch each of all of your favourite chai spices. Cinnamon, ginger, cayenne or black pepper (small amount only), cardamom, nutmeg, even pure tumeric juice! Work with the flavours until you get it just the way you like it best. Spices are warming and rejuvenating especially in Winter.
Lavender: Use piping hot lavender tea OR very carefully 1/2 drop of pure lavender essential oil when frothing Mylk with cacao. Or use piping hot lavender tea in place of boiling water. Lavender is calming and tastes delicious combined with raw chocolate. Lovely for unwinding after a hectic day!
Abigail’s SuperTip: Always place your raw cacao into cold Mylk/milk before adding hot water as it preserves its precious antioxidants.