Carla Hall's Hot Chocolate Features A Dollop Of Ginger Whipped Cream

Chef Carla Hall has a few culinary secrets tucked in her sleeve when it comes to perfecting an indulgent cup of hot cocoa. While there's certainly nothing wrong with a classically made hot chocolate recipe, Hall turns up the heat by adding extra spices to the homemade whipped cream she uses to garnish each steaming cup.

By whipping ground ginger together with heavy cream and sugar, Hall creates a flavorful whipped topping to place on top of cocoa mugs. Whipping the cream happens quickly, Hall warns on her website, so if you do attempt this spicy add-in, watch the cream carefully so that it doesn't become butter before you begin to bring in ginger and sugar into the mix. Once all of the ingredients have been mixed to make the whipped cream, you'll have a fresh tasty batch that can be scooped into mugs of hot cocoa or set on top of desserts that might benefit from a little extra oomph. 

Turn an old favorite into a gourmet treat

Consider toasting cinnamon or ginger before adding it to your recipes for an even warmer, more flavorful essence. Toasting the spices can help release the essential oils found in the spices and can add extra heat to both your mug of hot cocoa and homemade whipped cream. When paired with the zest of an orange and an extra sprinkle of ground cinnamon, these cups of hot chocolate disappear quickly.

If you're catering to dairy restrictions, simply reach for plant-based milk to serve up dairy-free servings to family members and friends. Use coconut milk to whip up dairy-free whipped cream and add a sprinkle of ginger to bring a taste of the tropics to your hot chocolate mugs. Once you've experimented with combining ginger in your whipped cream recipes, you can consider including other spices like cardamon, pumpkin pie spice, and nutmeg to flavor the hot cocoa recipes of your dreams.