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01-24-2008, 02:06 PM
How to Make Hot Chocolate (http://www.wikihow.com/Make-Hot-Chocolate)


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Hot chocolate can be a delicious and comforting beverage, especially during cold winter months. If chilled, however, you'll have a refreshing drink or possibly a dessert depending on how you dress it up.

But hot chocolate should not to be confused with hot cocoa. The former is made with actual chocolate and is a richer, much more substantial beverage. The latter is produced from cocoa powder or from a manufactured product containing cocoa powder such as hot cocoa mixes available at grocery stores.
This article concentrates on hot chocolate and will serve as a guideline as to how you can prepare it. Experiment with your own recipes and see what you can create. The possibilities are endless!

[edit (http://www.wikihow.com/index.php?title=Make-Hot-Chocolate&action=edit&section=1)] Ingredients

Milk or water
Flavorings, such as herbs, spices, liqueur, mint etc. Pinch of salt

[edit (http://www.wikihow.com/index.php?title=Make-Hot-Chocolate&action=edit&section=2)] Steps

Obtain some good quality chocolate. This can be milk, dark, or even white chocolate, depending on your preferences and flavors you wish to add.
If you have some unsweetened chocolate lying around, hot chocolate is a great way to use it up. Simply add sugar to sweeten it.
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Chop the chocolate finely on a clean cutting board or counter. One of the easiest ways to chop the chocolate is to use a serrated knife. Make sure the cutting surface has not been exposed to onions or other strong smelling foods. Residual odors can contaminate the chocolate and impart undesirable flavors.

The amount of chocolate you use depends on how strong and rich you want the beverage to be. A good starting point is 25g of chocolate per cup of liquid. If you need more chocolate, simply add it.
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Turn the stove top to a medium-low or low setting. Pour milk or water into the pot and gently add the chopped chocolate.
An alternative to direct heat is to double boil. If you choose to double boil, place a small pot of water on high heat and put a metal bowl on top. Add the chocolate and stir until fully melted turning the heat down some once the water has reached boiling point. Then add cream at 1:1 to the chocolate and stir, effectively making a ganache. The ganache will be added to your mug of hot milk when finished. Add any flavorings suggested below to the ganache while stirring in the cream. (Using the double boil method should make it more difficult to burn your chocolately goodness, but be careful with the bowl as it will get hot!)
Some people prefer milk for a richer flavor, while others favor water. The choice here is yours, but whatever you use, make sure each serving of hot chocolate is at least 4oz (120ml) for a richer beverage and at most 8oz (240ml) for a thinner beverage.
This is the point where you can add liqueur if you wish. Doing so now will burn off some of the alcohol and mellow out the flavor.
Spices and other flavorings can be added here as well. To increase their flavor presence in the hot chocolate, they will need the opportunity to steep for a longer period of time. However, if you want a subtler, less pronounced flavor, hold off for now.
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Stir continuously with a whisk until the liquid and chocolate combine completely. Just when you think the two are incorporated, you might notice black flecks scattered in the chocolaty matrix. These flecks are bits of unmelted chocolate, so you should continue to stir until they disappear.
Sometimes, whisking vigorously is necessary to dissolve unmelted chocolate completely.
If the mixture becomes too hot, or you feel that it might burn, remove pot from the heat and continue to stir, allowing the temperature to reduce. Put pot back on heat once the mixture has cooled.
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Add desired flavorings once you have a fully emulsified liquid in the pot. Liqueur can also be added, but if you do so now, you might find the flavor too strong because the alcohol will not have had a chance to evaporate.
Turn off the heat and pour in cups immediately afterwards. Garnish with whatever you wish, such as mint leaves, cinnamon sticks, or whipped cream.
Enjoy! And have fun with trying out all sorts of variations!

[edit (http://www.wikihow.com/index.php?title=Make-Hot-Chocolate&action=edit&section=3)] Tips

The pinch of salt makes the chocolate taste more like chocolate!
The richness of your hot chocolate will usually determine how much you will drink or serve to others. Generally, a richer beverage should be served in 4oz cups such as an espresso cup due to the density of the beverage. A thinner, less chocolaty beverage can be served in more liberal portions, such as coffee cups or mugs.
The cocoa content of the chocolate will contribute a lot to the flavor and intensity of the beverage. For example, hot chocolate made with 85% chocolate will be strong and not as sweet as most people are familiar with. To balance this out, add sugar, sweeter chocolate, or even milk chocolate for a more rounded flavor.
Combine different chocolates of various origins, percentages, and even types, such as mixing milk with dark. You can even use flavored bars.
Feel free to add a tablespoon or two of cream for added richness.
A pinch of cornstarch can help thicken the chocolate, if you prefer a thicker texture. Make sure to sift it in so that your hot chocolate doesn't end up grainy.
Store unused portions in the refrigerator to enjoy at another time. Or, refrigerate an entire batch for a cold, refreshing treat. Just shake it to redistribute the chocolate, as it will settle and separate.
Experiment with different herbs and spices, such as basil, fennel, thyme, nutmeg, and ginger. Combine herbs with fruits for added interest. Cinnamon is a great addition!
Play around with when to add the flavorings. Sometimes, certain herbs and spices will need to "steep" while you prepare the hot chocolate, so their flavor can be fully extracted. Other times, however, you can add them towards the end of the process. See what works for you.
Adding malt gives hot chocolate a malted-milk-balls taste.
Many people enjoy adding marshmallows to their chocolate; they give it the creamy layer you see in some pictures.

[edit (http://www.wikihow.com/index.php?title=Make-Hot-Chocolate&action=edit&section=4)] Warnings

When stirring the hot chocolate in the pot, use only a wire whisk and nothing else. A spoon will not blend the chocolate and liquid thoroughly, and you'll end up with a grainy beverage.
Knives are of course sharp, and one should be careful while cutting the chocolate.
Don't leave the stove unattended because milk and chocolate can burn easily.http://www.wikihow.com/Make-Hot-Chocolate

01-26-2008, 12:03 AM
Well no one seemed to like the How To Make Hot Chocolate, so I'll try this one instead!

How to Celebrate Australia Day (http://www.wikihow.com/Celebrate-Australia-Day)

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"It's the day to reflect on what we have achieved and what we can be proud of in our great nation."[1] (http://www.wikihow.com/Celebrate-Australia-Day#_note-0)

Australia Day is celebrated on the 26th of January every year. It is the biggest nationwide public holiday that is celebrated across the country. There are no hard and fast rules on how to celebrate the day but it is great if you feel like participating any way you can. [edit (http://www.wikihow.com/index.php?title=Celebrate-Australia-Day&action=edit&section=1)] Steps

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Decide how you'd like to celebrate. There are many ways to celebrate Australia Day and all of them are good. Probably the main "rule", if there are any rules, is just don't celebrate it alone! Get out there and enjoy it with lots of other people. Different ideas include:
Attending an official event (concerts, award ceremonies, fireworks, parades etc.)
Attending a local event (regattas, community barbecues, sausage sizzles, face painting, musical events etc.)
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Holding a party or barbeque at home
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Going to the pub for celebratory drinks
Having a celebration at work
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Spend time at the beach or pool cooling down. Do this before an evening of partying - or make this the party too!
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Visit museums and learn about Australia's history
Other. If you're stumped for ideas, check out the official list at A to Z of Event Ideas (http://www.australiaday.gov.au/pages/page58.asp)

01-26-2008, 12:05 AM
Other. If you're stumped for ideas, check out the official list at A to Z of Event Ideas (http://www.australiaday.gov.au/pages/page58.asp)
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Dress up in Aussie colours. Use clothes, face paints, temporary tattoos, sunbrellas, jewellery etc. in a range of styles and colors to suit the occasion. For colours, there is a selection of possible colour schemes here:
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Red, white and blue to reflect the flag, with some stars thrown in;
Wattle yellow and eucalyptus green reflecting past colour schemes and colours of the land;
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The colours of the Aboriginal flag - black, red (ochre) and yellow;
The colours of the Torres Strait Islander flag - green, blue and white. (And perhaps the white dhari (headdress) symbol);
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A "national costume" of your choosing (hold a competition and award prizes);
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Anything goes. Provided you get up in time to make the celebrations, wear anything comfortable and a hat.
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Watch the fireworks. Many cities and towns have fireworks in the evening. Grab a blanket, a picnic basket, some food and drinks and head out at a reasonable hour to get a good vantage point. Take a radio if the radio show follows the fireworks; many stations add music that is timed to the fireworks.
Visit another Australian city to discover their celebrations for something different this year.
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Visit Sydney. See the boats in the Harbour by day and watch the amazing fireworks display at night.
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Visit the capital. Go and celebrate in Canberra, the heart of the nation. Here you can watch Australia Day awards ceremonies, attend picnics, see fireworks displays, enter a triathlon (or just watch it) or watch the Chief Minister's sailing regatta.
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Fly the Australian flag. Hoist an Australian flag up in the front yard, hang it from your car or wear it emblazoned across a t-shirt. You can choose from the Australian National flag, the Aboriginal flag, the Torres Strait Islander flag or other Australian flags.
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Make Australian food. Bake up a feast of lamingtons (http://www.wikihow.com/Make-Banana-Lamingtons), pavlova (http://www.wikihow.com/Make-Pavlova), koala shaped biscuits and meat pies. Make a cake in the shape of Australia. Make a pie floater (http://www.wikihow.com/Make-a-Pie-Floater) or two for the 3am munchies.

01-26-2008, 12:06 AM
Make Australian crafts. Make craft items with the kids that reflect Australian themes, such as platypus masks, koala stuffed toys, kangaroo cut-outs and gumnut keyrings.
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Play the didgeridoo (http://www.wikihow.com/Play-the-Didgeridoo). If you know how, play it for your local community. Donate funds to a local charity. Give them away as gifts, sell at craft stalls to enthusiastic Aussie celebrators or wear them - whatever takes your fancy.
Send an Australia Day e-card to friends and colleagues. Look online for sites that provide this resource and wish your fellow Australians a very happy Australia Day.
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Get into sport. Play it, watch it or humour those who can't get enough of it. This is the season for cricket and tennis - when too much sport is barely enough. One time-honoured tradition is to catch a cricket game in the day and the fireworks by night.

[edit (http://www.wikihow.com/index.php?title=Celebrate-Australia-Day&action=edit&section=2)] Tips

Make sure Australia Day is an inclusive day. Australia is a country of great cultural diversity, including Aborigines and Torres Strait Islanders, varied European, Pacific and Asian backgrounds and newly arrived immigrants from all around the world. If your community lacks this recognition, speak up and be ready to help make sure all Australian voices are included.
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Slip, slop, slap. Don't go outdoors without the hat, the sunscreen and the long-sleeved clothing. Glowing red skin at night is not attractive and ultimately can be health-threatening.

[edit (http://www.wikihow.com/index.php?title=Celebrate-Australia-Day&action=edit&section=3)] Warnings

Drink responsibly - alcohol and driving do not mix. Leave the car at home or get sober friends to drive.

[edit (http://www.wikihow.com/index.php?title=Celebrate-Australia-Day&action=edit&section=4)] Things You'll Need

Aussie color clothing
Esky (icebox) if you're partying and lots of ice, drinks and food
Patriotic spirit

[edit (http://www.wikihow.com/index.php?title=Celebrate-Australia-Day&action=edit&section=5)] Related wikiHows

How to Fly the Australian Flag (http://www.wikihow.com/Fly-the-Australian-Flag)
How to Make Pavlova (http://www.wikihow.com/Make-Pavlova)
How to Make Banana Lamingtons (http://www.wikihow.com/Make-Banana-Lamingtons)

01-26-2008, 12:07 AM
Those steps are all jacked up because Coach won't let us post enough pics in a thread!

I think the forum is big enough now to change that up, but the steps are all there!

Enjoy Australia day!


01-26-2008, 12:14 AM
YouTube - How to Juice a Lemon


01-26-2008, 01:06 AM
this post just made me wanna go home and make some "special brownies" thanks h'squared.

01-26-2008, 02:04 AM
this post just made me wanna go home and make some "special brownies" thanks h'squared.

I'm 100% legit nowadays, but that is tempting!!!!

I don't eat sweets though...

Don't put it in the brownies or you're doing it wrong!

:beer: :11: :D :bananen_smilies046:

01-26-2008, 03:05 AM