Hola! We are finally having colder weather here in Los Angeles, and while I was shaking like a Chihuahua the first couple of days since I underestimated the windy streets, I can now enjoy warm drinks and cozy scarves. Today I'm sharing with you guys a very simple recipe that I fondly remember having back home paired with tamales, and that is perfect on cold winter nights. This is a drink called champurrado, and it is some sort of chocolate atole, a thick drink with corn flour (masa) that washes away the cold and fills you up with chocolatey and cinnamon-y goodness you will surely enjoy.
The original recipe, or so I've heard, is made with water, chocolate, corn masa, piloncillo, and cinnamon. Some recipes don't add the cinnamon, some use milk instead of water, or half water half milk, add extra spices and so on. I like the extra creaminess that milk adds, but feel free to replace it with water (or only milk) and add/omit your spices of choice. Piloncillo has different names outside of Mexico (panela, rapadura, so on), so here is a link to learn more about it; also feel free to replace it with brown sugar if you can't find it near you.
- 4 cups water
- 1 cup milk
- 90g chocolate (mexican hot chocolate, like Abuelita, or semi sweet chocolate)
- 160g piloncillo (3/4 cup brown sugar)
- 1/2 cup corn flour (like maseca, you can add a bit less to make it runnier, or more to thicken)
- 1 cinnamon stick
- In a saucepan over medium heat, warm up 3 1/2 cups of the water and add the cinnamon stick. Let it steep for about 10 minutes.
- Add the chocolate and piloncillo (or sugar) and mix with a wooden spoon until both of them dissolve in the hot water.
- Place the milk in a large cup or small bowl, and warm up a little bit in the microwave. Add the corn flour and mix well. If lumps form slowly add the 1/2 cup of water remaining and mix well.
- Slowly add the flour mixture into the chocolate water, mixing it with one hand while you slowly pour the mix. Don't rush it or you might end up forming lumps. You can use a sieve to add the flour mixture if you want to.
- Mix well and reduce the heat a little bit, in a medium-low setting, until the mixture thickens.
- Remove the cinnamon stick and serve into cups.
I recommend drinking it after dinner, you'll feel super warm and fuzzy and so ready to go to bed. So grab your cup, blanket and softest socks and get ready to have an awesome night's sleep. And if you have a dog, cat or fuzzy friend to cuddle next to you, the better. Have fun in the kitchen!