Peruvian Hot Chocolate 'Chocolatada Navideña'
This decadent Peruvian dairy free hot chocolate is full of rich Peruvian cacao flavor and is the perfect sweet treat to enjoy with friends and family this holiday season.
Nothing says warm and cozy like a steaming cup of decadent hot chocolate. While traditional variations of hot chocolate are present in many cultures throughout the world, I knew that for this Christmas series I wanted to highlight the hot chocolate Christmas tradition in Peru.
While the weather may be warm during the holiday season in Peru, that doesn’t keep Peruvians from enjoying piping hot chocolate along with slices of Panettone. When I was first researching the Christmas food culture history in Peru I was surprised to find that Panettone (a traditional Italian dessert) has made such an impact in Peru.
In fact Panettone is one of the most popular desserts enjoyed during the Christmas season and almost always accompanies a steaming cup of hot chocolate, but let’s not confuse it with the main attraction — which is the hot chocolate.
'Chocolatada Navideña' is one of the main traditions in Peru during the Christmas season when friends and family gather together over a big bowl of Peruvian Hot Chocolate. These Chocolatada’s can take place at home or at school, and sometimes are used as a celebratory way for the local community to celebrate the holiday season with one another and raise money for a local charity. Once again food (and chocolate) brings people together, and I love that even in the heat of summer this Peruvian hot chocolate is such a happy tradition.
Traditionally, Peruvian hot chocolate is very thick and resembles the consistency of a runny chocolate pudding. While families have many different recipes the usual ingredients involved are a combination of cocoa, cinnamon, vanilla, cloves, condensed milk, and water. Since I wanted to make this hot chocolate dairy free I opted to replace the condensed milk with full-fat coconut that would allow me to still get that thick texture, while also making the recipe dairy free.
I also would highly recommend putting on the full 'Chocolatada Navideña' experience when making this recipe and serve it in a large bowl for your friends and family to ladle spoonfuls into their own individual cups to sip and enjoy.
peruvian hot chocolate ‘chocolatada navideña’
Place coconut milk (the cream + liquid), cacao powder, water, cinnamon stick, cinnamon powder, cloves, coconut sugar, vanilla, and sea salt in a medium-size sauce pan over medium heat on the stove.
Stir consistently, whisking until the hot chocolate begins to thicken and small bubbles begin to form.
Remove cinnamon stick from mixture and serve in a large bowl and ladle hot chocolate into individual serving cups.
Serve with panettone or Christmas cookies and enjoy!